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Royals, Danny Duffy open extension talks

The sides have had preliminary discussions about a long-term deal for the lefty.

MLB: Kansas City Royals at Minnesota Twins Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

The Royals have opened extension talks with left-hander Danny Duffy, according to Jeffrey Flanagan of MLB.com. The talks appear to be preliminary, though there is mutual interest in a deal.

Duffy, 27, is slated to become a free agent after next season and is arbitration-eligible for the final time this season. He earned $4.23 million last season and will receive a pay raise this winter after a strong year in which he posted a 3.51 ERA in 42 appearances (26 starts) for Kansas City.

The Royals have reportedly been looking to shed payroll this offseason, and recently got veterans Edinson Volquez, Kendrys Morales, Kris Medlen and Luke Hochevar off the books by not utilizing their options for next season.

Kansas City will likely try to lock up a couple of key players who are set for free agency next winter, as the club is set to lose Duffy, first baseman Eric Hosmer, shortstop Alcides Escobar, reliever Wade Davis, third baseman Mike Moustakas, starter Jason Vargas and outfielder Lorenzo Cain to the free-agent market.