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Cueto Flashes Brilliance With Free Agency Pending

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    Johnny Cueto of the Kansas City Royals warms up prior to Game One of the 2015 World Series against the New York Mets at Kauffman Stadium on October 27, 2015 in Kansas City, Missouri.

    In a short time, Johnny Cueto will be a free agent.

    On Wednesday night in Kansas City, the righty veteran made his World Series debut and couldn't have done much better in doing so. Cueto fired a complete game for the Royals, allowing just two hits and one run, thanks to three walks. Even still, it was a brilliant performance from a guy who was acquired by the Royals to put them over the top at the trade deadline and instead disappointed for much of his second half with the club.

    But money is made in postseason pitching, and Cueto made himself a lot of dough on Wednesday night.

    The 29-year-old will be a free agent at season's end and will be coming off his third 200-inning season in four years, with the one outlier being a 2013 that was cut short by injury. In 2014, Cueto finished second in the Cy Young voting for the Reds, striking out 242 batters in 243 2/3 innings — both league-leading figures.

    He's been a bit of an erratic head case at times in his career, but for the most part, he's a dominant pitcher with ace qualities.

    Cueto was set to earn a big pay day this winter before Wednesday night, but after that game, it got a little bit bigger.