Kansas City announced the signing Monday, bringing in the 2019 All-Star to boost a rotation that leaned largely on unproven youngsters in 2020. The contract includes a $13 million club option for 2023 with a $1 million buyout.
"We know we needed to add a starter to our young rotation," Royals general manager Dayton Moore said. "We feel like Mikey gives us a lot of stability, a lot of focus. Somebody who has been successful, can provide us innings, and so it’s just a really, really good fit for us, and we’re grateful that he’s once again going to be a Kansas City Royal."
The 32-year-old Minor split 2020 between the Texas Rangers and Oakland Athletics, going 1-6 with a 5.56 ERA and diminished velocity after posting the best numbers of his career a year earlier. In 2019, he was 14-10 with a 3.59 ERA and struck out 200 batters for the first time in his career.
A first round pick by Atlanta in 2009, Minor spent five seasons in the Braves’ rotation before a torn labrum in his left shoulder kept him out of the majors for two years.
The Royals signed Minor to a two-year deal following surgery, allowing him to spend 2016 rehabbing before using him successfully as a reliever in 2017.
"Of course we have a history with Mikey," Moore said. "A history and a relationship we felt was important. We have a special history with Mike, and he has great trust in our medical people, our coaching staff."
Minor signed a $28 million, three-year deal with Texas after the 2017 season, returned to the rotation and emerged as one of the American League’s steadiest starters.
Kansas City also agreed to one-year deals with right-handers Jesse Hahn ($1.75 million) and Jakob Junis ($1.7 million) and outfielder Franchy Cordero ($800,000) that avoided arbitration.
Hahn can earn $350,000 in performance bonuses based on games: $50,000 each for 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50 and 55.
Cordero can earn $25,000 in performance bonuses for plate appearances: $5,000 apiece for 300, 350, 400, 450 and 500.
Right-handed pitcher Carlos Sanabria was designated for assignment, opening a roster spot for Minor.