The Royals announced that they have signed right-hander Ramon Troncoso to a minor league deal (Twitter link). Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star tweets that the MDR Sports Management client did not receive an invitation to Major League Spring Training.
The 31-year-old Troncoso spent the 2013 campaign with the White Sox, pitching 30 innings over the course of 29 appearances and posting a 4.50 ERA with 5.4 K/9, 4.8 BB/9 and a strong 51 percent ground-ball rate. Troncoso missed the end of the season with a case of pericarditis — inflammation of the tissue surrounding his heart.
The Dominican hurler spent four seasons with the Dodgers from 2008-11, appearing in a career-high 82 2/3 innings and posting a 2.72 ERA as a 26-year-old in 2009. He's struggled since that time but maintained respectable velocity to go along with his ground-ball rate, averaging 92.2 mph on his heater last year in Chicago. Troncoso has an ERA of exactly 4.00 in 227 1/3 career innings to go along with 6.3 K/9 and 3.3 BB/9. Left-handed batters clubbed him at a .360/.467/.620 clip in 2013, but he held opposing righties to a minuscule .179/.253/.239 batting line. He's had a noticeable platoon split throughout his career (.682 OPS vs. right-handed hitters, .822 OPS vs. lefties), but it's never been close to as extreme as it was in 2013.