The big news for the Kansas City Royals this off-season was the acquisition of James Shields from the Tampa Bay Rays. The second player in that trade was right-hander Wade Davis. Davis is scheduled to pitch in his first spring training action today as the Royals begin using pitchers they expect to be in their starting rotation.
Davis spent last season in the Tampa Bay bullpen where he was 3-0 with a 2.43 ERA in 54 games. He had 87 strikeouts against 29 walks in 70 1/3 innings. Davis compiled 58 starts in 2010 and 2011 winning 12 games in 11 games respectively and has appeared in two post seasons. The 6-foot-5 Davis is a fierce competitor and his time in the bullpen has added an element of aggressiveness.
“I plan on being extremely aggressive,” he said. “I think that’s something I learned last year. Being extremely aggressive, not giving any credit to anybody, just attacking everybody the same way and not giving in and trusting everything that I have.”
While Shields was the featured player in the big trade, the deal would not have been completed without the inclusion of Davis. “Well, I’ll tell you what, he’s got a powerful arm, he’s got tremendous stuff. It’s as good as it gets, man, and he’s a competitor,” Shields said.
On Thursday Shields will make his first spring start against the San Diego Padres, Ervin Santana will follow on Friday against the Reds and Jeremy Guthrie will make his spring debut on Saturday against the San Francisco Giants.