Player News - Royals

Date: Team: Pos:

Raul Mondesi went 1-for-2 with a solo home run in Saturday's Cactus League win over the Dodgers.

Mondesi cranked a solo home run leading off the sixth inning. He'll need to continue to impress if he's to stick in competition with Whit Merrifield for second base duties. We suspect that the 22-year-old will ultimately be ticketed for Triple-A Omaha when all is said and done this spring, but homers like the one on Saturday only aid his cause.
Feb 24 - 6:05 PM

Jesse Hahn allowed two runs on two hits over 1 2/3 innings in Saturday's Cactus League win over the Dodgers.

Hahn was acquired from the A's in trade at the end of January. Making his spring debut with his new crew on Saturday, he struck out two and walked two. Both runs on his line scored in the second inning. He'll be attempting to win a back-end rotation spot as the spring unfolds and would likely work in a long-relief capacity if he fails to crack the starting five. Hahn has put up an unsightly 5.59 ERA over 116 combined frames during the last two seasons. He doesn't figure to hold any significant fantasy value for the upcoming campaign, regardless of how the spring shakes out.
Feb 24 - 5:51 PM

Royals signed OF Michael Saunders to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

Saunders agreed to terms with the Pirates on a minor league deal this week and was even at their spring training complex earlier Friday. However, it appears he asked out of the agreement after they traded for Corey Dickerson. Saunders will probably have a better shot to make the Royals' Opening Day roster. He batted just .202/.256/.344 with six homers over 73 games for the Phillies and Blue Jays last season.
Feb 23 - 4:41 PM

MLB.com's Jon Morosi said on MLB Network Thursday that the White Sox "could be a fit" for Mike Moustakas.

Morosi cautions that he's "not entirely sure how aggressively they are courting (Moustakas) right now" and also notes that general manager Rich Hahn told The Athletic this week that he's not really looking at any additions from outside the organization. However, Morosi was told by multiple executives that the White Sox "might be the most logical remaining fit" for Moustakas at this point. "Moose" hasn't been able to gain much traction in the market this offseason.
Feb 23 - 11:25 AM

Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that the Braves "have talked about" Mike Moustakas, but "so far there’s no common ground."

The Braves could use a third baseman but likely only would want Moustakas on a short-term deal and so far the free agent doesn't appear willing to accept those terms. The market for Moustakas has been eerily quiet to this point, so he might not have a choice but to lower his demands.
Feb 23 - 11:05 AM

Pirates signed OF Michael Saunders to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

Saunders was an All-Star with the Blue Jays in 2016, but the 31-year-old outfielder batted just .202/.256/.344 with six home runs and 21 RBI in 73 games last season. He's worth a shot for the rebuilding Pirates.
Feb 21 - 12:24 PM

Free agent right-hander Luke Hochevar (shoulder) is still battling symptoms of thoracic outlet syndrome.

Hochevar is hoping to land with a team at some point this spring, but that probably won't happen until he is symptom-free. The 34-year-old right-hander hasn't appeared in a major league game since July 2016 and he didn't pitch anywhere professionally in 2017 while recovering from thoracic outlet surgery. "We don’t know the timetable," Hochevar's agent Scott Boras said Tuesday. "But the doctors say [his shoulder] should come back. We just don’t know when."
Feb 20 - 9:31 PM

Royals manager Ned Yost said he's hoping to get 500-plus at-bats for Jorge Soler, Cheslor Cuthbert, and Jorge Bonifacio in 2018.

The rebuilding club wants to see what they have with all three. Soler carries the most name recognition, but he's coming off a rough first season with the Royals where he batted .144/.245/.258 over 110 plate appearances. However, the opportunity will be there in 2018 and he worked hard over the winter while losing 20 pounds. Yost sees Soler getting at-bats out of the DH spot and the corner outfield spots.
Feb 19 - 12:28 PM

Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports that the Royals plan to stay pat and go into their rebuild and will not pursue any marquee free agents.

That announcement came on the heels of Eric Hosmer spurning their offer to sign with the Padres late Saturday. There has been speculation that Kansas City could still be open to a reunion with Mike Moustakas since his market has dried up, but this report casts doubt on that.
Feb 18 - 7:20 PM

Brandon Maurer lost his arbitration case and will make $2.95 million in 2018.

Maurer had requested $3.5 million from the Royals. The reliever saved 22 games last season for the Padres and Royals but held an ugly 6.52 ERA across 59 1/3 innings.
Feb 16 - 1:17 PM

Nate Karns (thoracic outlet syndrome) is not under any restrictions at the start of spring training.

Karns' 2017 season ended when he had thoracic outlet surgery last July, but he's on the same schedule as the other Royals pitchers at the start of camp. The right-hander will compete for a spot in the rotation.
Feb 16 - 12:35 PM

Royals manager Ned Yost said Wednesday that Hunter Dozier's focus early in camp will be on first base.

"He'll take a lot of ground balls there," Yost said. "We bounced him around a lot last year. But we're going to concentrate with him at first base early." Dozier was drafted as a shortstop in 2013, but quickly moved over to third base and has also played in the outfield. The only pure first baseman on the Royals' 40-man roster is Samir Duenez, a 22-year-old prospect who hasn't played above Double-A. It sounds like Dozier has a real chance of being the Royals' everyday first baseman to start the 2018 season, assuming they are unable to re-sign Eric Hosmer.
Feb 14 - 4:30 PM

Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that the Yankees and free agent third baseman Mike Moustakas have had "occasional contact" in recent days.

Nothing has been ruled out, but a match is still considered a "long shot," as the Yankees are concerned about the luxury-tax threshold and losing a draft pick. Moving Jacoby Ellsbury would create some wiggle room, though there's nothing to indicate anything is close there. Any deal with Moustakas would have to be a short-term one, as the Yankees have Miguel Andujar in the pipeline and could also make a run at Manny Machado next offseason. Moustakas would be in a great situation if he lands in the Bronx, but he could still hold out for a longer deal. Of course, his market has been so quiet that it's unclear how much leverage he has here.
Feb 13 - 2:46 PM

Craig Mish of Sirius XM confirms that the Marlins have spoken with free agent outfielders Melky Cabrera and Jon Jay.

This backs up recent reports from Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports and Joe Frisaro of MLB.com. Mish hears that Cabrera wants two years, but the rebuilding Marlins would prefer a one-year commitment for either. If they end up signing one of them, they will almost certainly become trade bait around midseason.
Feb 13 - 12:53 PM

The Royals and Brandon Maurer have an arbitration hearing scheduled for Thursday.

Barring a last-minute agreement, it will be the first hearing under Dayton Moore's tenure as Royals' GM. Maurer, who was acquired midseason last year, requested $3.5 million and was offered $2.95 million by the Royals when arbitration figures were exchanged a month ago. The arbitration panel will rule for one salary or the other for the 2018 season.
Feb 12 - 2:33 PM


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