Royals GM Dayton Moore expects budget to remain the same

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

The Royals set a franchise record with $82 million given out in player salaries.

Kansas City Royals General Manager Dayton Moore believes that the team's payroll budget going into 2014 will remain "about the same" at $82 million, reports Bob Dutton at the Kansas City Star.

More Royals coverage: Royals Review

The Royals already have approximately $42 million under contract for the 2014 season, but that does not include a $12 million option on James Shields which is sure to be exercised. It also does not account for pay raises to Luke Hochevar, Emilio Bonifacio, Felipe Paulino, Greg Holland, Eric Hosmer, Aaron Crow and six others, all of whom are eligible for arbitration.

All-in-all, Kansas City is looking at somewhere around $70 million in contracts to players already on the team barring non-tenders to Hochevar or Bonifacio. That gives the Royals around $10 million to play with in free agency.

That may not be enough to re-sign starting pitchers Ervin Santana and Bruce Chen, both of whom will be free agents. The Royals would like to keep both of them, but Santana alone would likely take up the remaining money. Moore has given indications in the past that the Royals will make a qualifying offer to Santana which, if turned down, will allow Kansas City to at least reap draft pick compensation if he signs elsewhere.

The Royals set a franchise record in 2013 with their $82 million payroll, topping the previous high of $75 million in 2010.

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