The Royals and Davis agreed Wednesday to a minor league contract, and the 35-year-old right-hander will go to spring training trying to earn a spot on the major league roster.
If added to the 40-man roster, Davis would get a one-year contract paying at a rate of $1.25 million while in the major leagues and $200,000 while in the minors. In the majors he could earn $925,000 for games: $50,000 apiece for 22 and each additional two through 30; $75,000 apiece for 34 and each additional two through 40; and $125,000 each for 55, 60 and 66.
Davis is a three-time All-Star who had 47 saves for the Royals from 2013 to 2016. Kansas City acquired him from Tampa Bay in December 2012, converted him to a full-time reliever in 2013 and traded him to the Chicago Cubs after the 2016 season. He pitched the final out of the 2015 World Series against the New York Mets, throwing a called third strike past Wilmer Flores.
He spent one season in Chicago, completing a four-year, $12.6 million contract with three options that wound up totaling $35.1 million in salary. He then signed a three-year, $52 million contract with the Colorado Rockies.
Davis had a National League-high 43 saves in 2018 and 15 in 2019, then made just five appearances with two saves during last year's pandemic-shortened season, when his ERA shot up to 20.77. The Rockies released him in September.
He has 139 saves in 12 major league seasons, going 63-52 with a 3.81 ERA. He is 4-0 with eight saves over 30 games in postseason play.