Royals Agree to Terms with Hunter Dozier and Jorge Soler; Non-tender Six Players


KANSAS CITY, MO (December 2, 2020) – The Kansas City Royals announced tonight that they will not tender a Major League contract to infielders Maikel Franco and Jeison Guzman, infielder/outfielder Erick Mejia and outfielder Bubba Starling. Left-handed pitcher Foster Griffin and right-handed pitcher Carlos Sanabria, who were designated for assignment earlier this week, will also not be tendered Major League contracts.

The Royals announced today that they did agree to terms with infielder/outfielder Hunter Dozier and outfielder/designated hitter Jorge Soler. Yesterday, the Royals announced that they agreed to terms with outfielder Franchy Cordero and right-handed pitchers Jesse Hahn and Jakob Junis.

Franco, 28, started in all 60 games in 2020 and recorded his highest batting average (.278), on-base percentage (.321) and slugging percentage (.457) since 2015 with Philadelphia. He tied for third in the American League with 16 doubles and led the Royals with 38 RBI, which put him on a pace for 103 RBI over a 162-game season.

Guzman, 22, spent most of the 2020 season at the Royals’ Alternate Training Site. He was recalled for three days in August, but did not appear in a game. Guzman was selected to the 40-man roster in November of 2019, after being named Lexington’s Player of the Year that season.

Mejia, 26, made the Royals’ Opening Day roster for the first time in 2020 and played in eight games, including stints from July 24-Aug. 6 and Sept. 16-23.

Starling, 28, made the Royals’ Opening Day roster for the first time in 2020 and played in 35 games. He had two stints on the Injured List from Aug. 5-14 and Sept. 23 through season’s end. Starling was the Royals’ first-round pick (5th overall) in the 2011 First-Year Player Draft.

Dozier, 29, missed the first 16 games of the 2020 season, but started in each of the Royals’ last 44 games and did not commit an error while playing at first base (24 games), right field (18) and left field (2). Despite not making his season debut until Aug. 9, Dozier led the club with 27 walks, which tied for fifth most in the American League from his first game through season’s end. He also ranked third among Royals with 29 runs scored.

Soler, 28, was limited to 43 games in 2020 due to two stints on the Injured List. The first stint snapped his consecutive games played streak at 199, which was the third-longest active run in the Majors at the time, according to Elias. Soler tied for third among Royals with eight home runs, including five in his first 16 games.

Following tonight’s transactions, the Royals have 36 players on their Major League Reserve List.

Derek Nester
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2021 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.

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