Royals agree to deal with Morales

San Diego, CA ( – The Kansas City Royals have found their
replacement for Billy Butler, signing baseman/designated hitter Kendrys
Morales to a two-year contract on Thursday.

The deal for Morales is reportedly worth $17 million and is pending a

Morales split last season with the Minnesota Twins and Seattle Mariners, who
acquired him right before the non-waiver trade deadline. However, he only hit
.218 in 98 combined games with eight home runs and 42 RBI.

The 31-year-old switch-hitter had declined a qualifying offer from
Seattle last offseason, but found no takers in free agency, as no team was
willing to surrender a draft pick to sign him.

Morales did not sign with the Twins until June 8 when compensation was no
longer a factor.

Morales broke into the majors with the Angels in 2006 and spent the next six
years with club. He is a career .271 hitter with 110 homers and 387 RBI in 718

Following a career-best season in 2009, in which he recorded 43 doubles, 34
home runs and 108 RBI, Morales was limited to 51 games in 2010 and missed the
entire 2011 season because of a severe leg injury. He suffered a fractured
lower left leg celebrating a walk-off grand slam on May 29, 2010 against

Butler left the defending AL champion Royals earlier this offseason for a 3-
year, $30 million deal with the Oakland Athletics.