The Royals are in pursuit of free agent starter Scott Kazmir, according to ESPN’s Buster Olney. At the same time, the club is reportedly close to signing Chris Young to a two-year deal worth $10-11 million, per Joel Sherman of the New York Post. The Royals are clearly focused on upgrading the starting rotation as everyone converges on the Winter Meetings in Nashville, Tennessee.
Kazmir, who turns 32 in January, pitched well in 18 starts for the Athletics to start the 2015 season. He posted a 2.38 ERA with a 101/35 K/BB ratio over 109 2/3 innings. The A’s then sent him to the Astros in a trade at the deadline in July, and he compiled mediocre numbers over 13 starts: a 4.13 ERA with a 54/24 K/BB ratio in 73 1/3 innings.
Kazmir was once a top prospect in the Mets’ and Rays’ systems, but struggled and was forced to play for the Sugar Land Skeeters of the Independent League in 2012 at the age of 28. His return to prominence has been remarkable.