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Royals exercise Wade Davis' club option

The Kansas City Royals have exercised the 2015 club option on reliever Wade Davis.

John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

The Kansas City Royals have exercised their $7 million club option on reliever Wade Davisaccording to an announcement from the team. Even though the Royals had a club option on Davis, he would not have hit free agency if the option had been declined. Davis remains arbitration-eligible, and won't be able to hit the free agent market until 2016.

Davis' 2014 season was one of the top performances from any reliever in the game. Over 71 appearances, Davis posted a 1.00 ERA along with a 13.63 K/9 rate. Davis has split time as a starter and as a reliever during his six-year career, but has clearly found his niche in the bullpen. Over his career, Davis has a 4.57 ERA as a starter, compared to a 1.65 ERA as a reliever.

Davis, along with James Shields and Elliot Johnson, joined the Royals in a 2012 trade with Tampa Bay that was centered around top prospect Wil Myers. The Rays extended Davis in 2011, when he signed a four-year $12.6 million contract. The extension also included three club option years for 2015-2017. The 2016 option could pay Davis $8 million, and the 2017 option is worth $10 million with a $2.5 million buyout.