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Royals interested in outfielder Melky Cabrera

The Royals may want a reunion with the All-Star outfielder, but can they afford it?

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The Royals have focused a lot this off-season on adding an outfield bat and Jon Heyman reports they could be targeting outfielder Melky Cabrera for a return to Kansas City. Heyman writes the Reds are also targeting Melky, and that financial considerations may make it difficult for the Royals to land Cabrera. The 30-year old switch-hitter spent the 2011 season in Kansas City, jump-starting his career with a line of .305/.339/.470 with 18 HR 87 RBI. Cabrera was then traded to San Francisco for pitcher Jonathan Sanchez, only to have a career year, hitting .346/.390/.516 and being named All-Star Game MVP.

He was suspended late that year however in an embarrassingly hilarious PED scandal. Cabrera signed a two-year deal with Toronto and had a disastrous 2013 campaign, although that may have been due to a tumor in his back. He bounced back with a line of .301/.351/.458 last year. In ten Major League seasons with the Yankees, Braves, Royals, Giants, and Blue Jays, Cabrera has hit .286/.339/.415.

Cabrera is a below-average defender in left-field, and presumably would have to move to right-field in Kansas City. He has a pretty even platoon split in his career. Heyman predicts that Cabrera could command a four-year $65 million contract this winter.