MARCH 5: The Royals have announced the signing, Alec Lewis of The Athletic tweets. The contract includes $250K in performance bonuses.
MARCH 2: The Royals have reached an agreement with free-agent outfielder Jarrod Dyson, Robert Murray of FanSided reports. It’s a $1.5MM pact for the ACES client, per Jon Heyman of MLB Network. The deal is pending a physical.
Dyson is going back to his first organization, which used a 50th-round pick on him in 2006. He managed to overcome the odds and reach the majors in 2010, and has since appeared in the bigs in 11 straight seasons. During his initial run with the Royals, Dyson turned in a few productive campaigns – including during their AL-winning 2014 effort and their World Series title season in 2015 – owing to a combination of excellent defense and base running. He played a fairly regular role with the Royals from 2012-16 and stole at least 25 bases in each of those years.
Heading into the 2017 season, the Royals traded Dyson to the Mariners for right-hander Nate Karns. Dyson, now 36, has also played for the Diamondbacks, Pirates and White Sox since the Royals parted with him. While Dyson has never been a huge threat with the bat, his production has plummeted over the past few seasons. Dating back to 2017, he has slashed an ugly .226/.305/.309 in 1,145 plate appearances, and his 2020 output – .180/.231/.180 in 66 PA – looks especially poor. However, Dyson did steal 80 bases and continue to offer high-grade defense (33 DRS, 22 UZR) during that four-year period.
Dyson, who has extensive experience at all three outfield positions, looks to be in line to back up Andrew Benintendi, Michael A. Taylor and Whit Merrifield in his return to Kansas City. Like Dyson, both Benintendi and Taylor have joined the Royals since last season ended.