Free-agent Billy Butler's representatives met with the Royals at the GM meetings on Tuesday, according to a report from Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com. As Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star reported, the Royals have interest in retaining Butler, but will likely not go past a two-year deal to do so.
Reports surfaced from MLB.com on Tuesday that Butler has already received a three-year, $30 million offer on the open market which many thought to be from the Orioles, but general manager Dan Duquette flatly told FOXSports.com's Ken Rosenthal that the report was "not true". The O's are likely doing their due diligence on available bats, but seem to be focusing their efforts on re-signing free-agent outfielders Nick Markakis and Nelson Cruz.
Butler, who turns 29 at the beginning of the season, is not expected to command a three-year deal on the open market, so many believe that he should accept the three-year, $30 million offer if it is in fact on the table. The Mariners have been known to be intrigued by Butler for years, but appear to be targeting bigger fish like Victor Martinez, Hanley Ramirez and Torii Hunter.