Royals starter Ian Kennedy is a realist of sorts, a rational thinker under no illusions about his performance or his future. So let’s get this part out of the way early.

Kennedy, 32, possesses a one-time opt-out this offseason on a five-year, $70 million contract signed before the 2016 season. He knows there is almost zero percent chance he will use it.

“It would be pretty stupid if I did,” Kennedy told The Star in an interview on Wednesday, just two days after the worst start of his season.

In a 12-0 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays on Monday, Kennedy surrendered seven earned runs in 2 2/3 innings, finishing out a miserable August. In his second year in the Royals’ rotation, he has posted a 4-10 record with a 5.47 ERA in 130 innings.

“I don’t think anybody would want how I’ve been throwing lately,” Kennedy said. “Shoot, I haven’t thought about it. If you’re throwing well, then you start thinking about it.

“But right now, it doesn’t look too good. You don’t go to the free-agent market pitching how I’ve been. No one is going to want that.”

Kennedy is slated to make a guaranteed $49 million across the next three seasons, including $16 million in 2018 and $16.5 million in 2019 and 2020. He will enter the offseason as the Royals’ second-highest paid player the next two seasons behind left fielder Alex Gordon. His tenure in Kansas City began with a strong debut season in 2016 before an inconsistent run in the first half and a precipitous decline in August.