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What do Kyle Davies, Todd Van Poppel, Kevin Jarvis, and Claude Willoughby have in common?

Kansas City Royals v Boston Red Sox

BOSTON, MA - JULY 25: Kyle Davies #34 of the Kansas City Royals celebrates after Kevin Youkilis of the Boston Red Sox is out in the sixth inning on July 25, 2011 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

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Yesterday the Royals released Kyle Davies, whom they acquired from the Braves for Octavio Dotel in July of 2007 and gave 99 starts to despite a 29-44 record and 5.34 ERA.

Toss in Davies’ early work in Atlanta prior to the trade and he’s thrown 768 innings with a 5.59 ERA for his career. Not only is that really, really bad, it’s historic.

Things could change if he makes it back to the majors and lowers his ERA--after all, he’s still only 27 years old--but right now Davies is just the fourth pitcher in the history of baseball to have an ERA of 5.50 or higher in 750 or more innings:

 YEARS IP ERA
Kevin Jarvis 1994-2006 781 6.03
Claude Willoughby 1925-1931 841 5.84
KYLE DAVIES 2005-2011 768 5.59
Todd Van Poppel 1991-2004 907 5.58

After releasing Davies general manager Dayton Moore told Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star that he “has very good pitches” and “has got better days ahead of him.” Perhaps he’s right, since it’d be tough for Davies to be much worse, but then again Moore is the same guy who kept him around for $3.2 million this season.