SURPRISE, Ariz. — Rare is the man who receives an opportunity to celebrate a raise of more than $4 million. Fresh off the settlement of his arbitration case, which resulted in a $4.675 million deal for 2014, Greg Holland became one of those.
He opted for a laid-back approach. He grilled with his wife and his brother. Then he went to bed. At 10 p.m.
Im not going to Vegas or anything, Holland said on Thursday morning. I keep it low key.
His new financial reality has not altered his work schedule. Holland was back in the teams complex to continue his early-season workouts. He threw a bullpen session on Thursday, the day before the Royals pitchers and catchers report for the start of camp.
Holland, a 28-year-old right-hander, has been one of the best relievers in baseball these past three seasons. He etched himself into the franchise record book with his performance in 2013. He saved 47 games and gave up just nine earned runs in 68 appearances.
It is difficult to imagine Holland being better than he was in 2013. The challenge is merely to replicate his production.
I approach it the same, Holland said. Ive always said no ones going to expect more out of me than me. Thats how I was raised, and my mentality. So I just want to go out there every day and prove myself. It doesnt really matter my numbers.
Ive always said: I could care less if I dont save a single game this season. If were in the playoffs, I dont have to look at my numbers to tell you it was a successful year.