Kyle Davies was a well-regarded young pitcher in the summer of 2007, when the Royals acquired him from the Braves for a few months of Octavio Dotel. Since then Davies has had an extended opportunity in Kansas City. Over 469 2/3 innings spread across 86 starts, he sports a 5.15 ERA, 6.2 K/9, 4.1 BB/9, and 1.11 HR/9. He also logged another 104 innings at Triple-A.
Davies, 27, just hasn't made much progress in the bigs. The best that can be said is that he's been healthy and is good for 170-180 innings with an ERA around 5.00. That has value, in that it's better than the production of most fifth starters, but you'd prefer to pay the league minimum for it. Davies, however, could make more than $2MM as a third-time arbitration eligible player.
Davies is still young, and he throws relatively hard with a 92.6 mph average fastball this year. With improved control and a move to the NL, you can picture him as a solid #4 starter. In that sense Davies is more of a trade candidate than a non-tender possibility. Still, you have to wonder if the Royals will give him one more shot given their rotation uncertainty. Zack Greinke could be traded, though he'd likely bring back a Major League ready arm. Brian Bannister is a non-tender candidate, and Bruce Chen is a free agent. If the Royals do give up on Davies and Bannister, they'll probably have to add at least one free agent starter.