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Royals GM Moore doesn't see Santana as a fit

Royals GM Moore doesn't see Santana as a fit

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Chances of pitcher Ervin Santana returning to the Royals in 2014: Virtually zero.

That's the reality despite a recent CBS Sports report that linked the Royals, along with several other teams, to interest in Santana.

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"We're very satisfied with our current rotation and the individuals we have competing for other open spots," general manager Dayton Moore said. "Erv did a terrific job for us last year and I'm confident that he's going to have a very successful year in 2014. But we're also very satisfied with the collection of the current starting pitchers that we have and I don't see where it's a fit at this particular time."

It's also not a fit for the Royals' budget, with the payroll already at a club-record $90 million or so.

They've signed left-handers Jason Vargas and Bruce Chen to go with James Shields and Jeremy Guthrie in their front four, and have an overflow of candidates competing for the fifth spot.

"We made a decision early on," Moore said. "In our early discussions, we had to make a determination on how we were going to put together our rotation in 2014 and we felt that probably we needed to move on. We signed Jason Vargas, who we're extremely excited about, and we also felt that we would have an opportunity to sign another pitcher. Unfortunately, Bruce took a little longer than we had hoped. But we were able to bring in two starting pitchers and with the group that we have and the group that we have coming, we feel we have strong depth."

That doesn't sound like much in the way of interest in Santana.

Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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