Royals “already know they will not be trying to retain Johnny Cueto”

AP Photo/Charlie Riedel

Johnny Cueto was brilliant in Game 2 of the World Series on Wednesday night in Kansas City and he was also terrific in ALDS Game 5, but his other two starts this postseason have been clunkers and he registered an underwhelming 4.76 ERA in 13 regular-season outings for the Royals after being acquired from the Reds in late July.

The impending free agent right-hander has done serious damage to his open market value, though he should be able to find at least one team willing to bank that he can return to ace-like status. Kansas City apparently won’t be that team …

The Royals already know they will not be trying to retain Johnny Cueto. They expect his free-agent price tag to go beyond their comfort level and, also, they have seen enough of his inconsistency to be worried about trying to keep him long term anyway.

That comes from Joel Sherman of the New York Post, who notes that the Royals do plan to engage in serious negotiations with Alex Gordon and Ben Zobrist.