KANSAS CITY -- General manager Dayton Moore was very pleased about center fielder Melky Cabrera's bounceback season but doesn't see a long-term deal coming out of it immediately.
"We'll probably go a year at a time at this point, but he was a terrific player for us and we're very proud of what he accomplished and we'd be very open to Melky being here long term," Moore said. "But I don't see anything right now. I think he's at a point in his career where he wants to look at things. He's just a year away from free agency."
Cabrera, who had a team-high 201 hits with a .305 average and 18 homers, was signed as a free agent last season but he was on the open market only because the Braves unconditionally released him after a lackluster season. He's still under the Royals' control for 2012 but, as Moore suggests, he probably wants to test free agency. That also would give him great incentive for another big season.
Of course, the chance that he might leave after 2012 also puts him in the position of being a possible trade piece for the Royals while they can still get something for him.
Meanwhile, Cabrera, eligible for salary arbitration this year for the last time, is certain to get a big jump from his $1.25 million in 2011.