Royals, Yordano Ventura reach five-year deal

Yordano Ventura and the Kansas City Royals reached a $23 million, five-year deal

Yordano Ventura and the Kansas City Royals reached a $23 million, five-year deal Saturday, two days before the young ace is set to start the opener for the AL champions.

With a 100 mph fastball and one World Series win already to his credit, the 23-year-old Ventura committed to the Royals through the 2019 season.

Ventura and the Royals host the Chicago White Sox on opening day Monday.

The hard-throwing righty dazzled as a rookie last season, going 14-10 with a 3.20 earned-run average.

Ventura pitched seven shutout innings of three-hit ball against San Francisco to win Game 6 of the World Series and force a Game 7, which the Giants took. In Game 2, Ventura pitched well into the sixth inning of a Kansas City victory.

The contract includes team options for 2020 and 2021 at $12 million each, with a $1 million buyout both years. Ventura will make $750,000 this year, $1 million in 2016, $3.25 million in 2017, $6.25 million in 2018 and $9.75 million in 2019. There's also a $1 million signing bonus.

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San Francisco Giants outfielder and first baseman Travis Ishikawa will begin the season on the disabled list because of a back injury.

Manager Bruce Bochy says Ishikawa is in Arizona and beginning to hit off a tee in his rehabilitation. Without Ishikawa, whose game-ending home run sent the eventual champion Giants to the World Series last October, there's an open spot for a 13th pitcher or extra infielder on the opening day roster.

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