The Royals announced Friday that right-hander Brandon Maurer, outfielder Paulo Orlando and infielder Ramon Torres all cleared outright waivers. Maurer has already rejected his outright assignment in favor of free agency, while both Orlando and Torres will become minor league free agents tomorrow. In a series of corresponding moves, Kansas City activated Jorge Soler, Cheslor Cuthbert and Jesse Hahn from the 60-day disabled list. The Royals’ 40-man roster sits at 37 players after these moves.
None of the 40-man subtractions come as much of a surprise. Maurer has spent parts of the past two season in the Kansas City bullpen but struggled to catastrophic levels, yielding 45 earned runs, 36 walks and 11 home runs in just 51 1/3 innings pitched. Though he’s shown the ability to miss bats, he’s far too hittable and was projected by MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz to earn as much as $3.1MM in arbitration this winter.
Orlando, 33, hit just .167/.194/.200 in 93 plate appearances with Kansas City this year and has never replicated the BABIP-fueled 2016 season he enjoyed when he hit .302/.329/.405. Orlando has drawn walks at a 2.4 percent clip in his career, one of the lowest marks in all of baseball, and is a career .263/.289/.384 hitter. He brings his share of speed to the table, though that hasn’t been enough to outweigh his otherwise lackluster offensive output.
Torres, 25, has seen action in each of the past two seasons but mustered a timid .225/.269/.265 slash in that time. His .230/.279/.343 showing in Triple-A this season gave little reason for optimism, though at the very least he does offer some versatility with the glove, having experience at second base, shortstop and third base.