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Kansas City Royals, Mike Moustakas avoid arbitration, agree to 2-year, $14.3 million deal

The Kansas City Royals have agreed on a contract extension with Mike Moustakas, who was set for an upcoming arbitration hearing.

John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

Earlier this offseason, Dayton Moore and the Kansas City Royals front office agreed upon a two-year contract extension to avoid arbitration with their star center fielder Lorenzo Cain. Like Cain, Mike Moustakas has two years of arbitration-eligibility left and has also agreed upon a contract that will not only resolve this years arbitration case, but next years' as well.

The terms of the deal are reported to be $14.3 million over two years. When filing for arbitration, it seemed that the Royals and Moustakas were quite a distance apart. Moustakas filed a $7 million, one-year salary on his own behalf, while his employer filed for $4.2 million.

Based on the fact that Moustakas was asking for a 169 percent raise on last year's salary, the Royals had a fairly good chance of winning the case, had it gone to the arbiter. However, teams usually like to avoid the awkward exchange of arbitration if at all possible, and the Royals have decided to pay Moustakas more than his asking price in average annual value. Of course, there was a good chance that Moustakas' worth would have risen again in his third and final arbitration year.

After learning how to beat the defensive shift in 2015, Moustakas has reinvented himself as a hitter and was an integral part of the World Series effort. Moustakas will be eligible for free agency following the 2017 season.