Royals Cut Ties with Zach Davies

Kansas City Royals make roster adjustments ahead of summer

by Zain ul Abedin
Royals Cut Ties with Zach Davies
© Christian Petersen/Getty Images

The Kansas City Royals have released veteran righty Zach Davies from his minor league deal, reports According to the official transactions log, the 31-year-old was pitching for Triple-A Omaha following a signing with the Royals on April 8.

He allowed only five hits and four walks, with nine strikeouts, allowing two runs in 11 innings. It was a rough spring training for Davies with the Nationals. All told, he'd allow 14 runs on 14 innings of work over four starts before ultimately getting released.

He's since signed with the Royals and gone 2-1 with a 4.29 ERA over five starts totaling 21 innings. In that stretch, his strikeout rate was a tepid 12.9%, with a walk rate of 9.7%, which is low for any pitcher but especially poor for Davies.

Not that Davies is much of a strikeout pitcher historically, but those are very low figures even for him.

Career Overview and Decline

For his big league career, Davies has thrown 1,048 1/3 innings, registering a 4.36 ERA, 4.48 FIP, and 4.80 SIERA.

He found relatively massive levels of success with the Milwaukee Brewers and San Diego Padres between the years of 2015 and 2020 when he compiled a 3.79 ERA and 4.18 FIP over 683 2/3 innings. Since then, his performance fell off a cliff.

While he put together a presentable season in 2022 for the Arizona Diamondbacks, it was sandwiched between poor performances in 2021 with the Chicago Cubs and with the Diamondbacks, posting ERAs of 5.78 and 7.00, respectively.

One big problem for Davies has been a decline in command, with his rate of walks spiking from 6.9% in his successful spell 2015-2020 to 10.3% over the last three years. He's also become much more susceptible to home runs yet another potential warning sign of control issues even inside the zone.

Still, Davies could prove to be an attractive target for other teams with similar misfortunes trying to negotiate the oft-fluid landscape of a starting rotation. The Royals' rotation has been nothing short of sensational as a group this MLB-low 3.09 ERA is only surpassed by the Phillies, and no team has thrown more innings.

Consistent showings from Cole Ragans, Brady Singer, Seth Lugo, Michael Wacha, and Alec Marsh have provided something of a backbone for the Royals an element not present here in years. Without any apparent path to the big leagues in Kansas City, Davies could be a valuable pickup for a team like the Red Sox, Rays, Rockies, Marlins or Brewers that is trying to find a way to deal with more than just one or two injuries to its starting pitching. Usually, by this point in the summer, demand for proven pitching depth should make Davies into a pretty commodity.

Kansas City Royals