The Royals announced on Wednesday that they’ve selected the contracts of right-handers Seth Maness (as Derrick Goold first reported earlier this morning) and Al Alburquerque from Triple-A Omaha. In order to clear spots on the 40-man roster, Kansas City designated infielder Christian Colon and minor league outfielder Peter O’Brien for assignment. Additionally, righty Jake Junis was optioned to Omaha.
Kansas City was obviously looking to get some fresh arms into the bullpen, and they’ve chosen two veterans who are looking to get their careers back on track. Maness has been a steady contributor but was non-tendered after undergoing a primary repair procedure (a Tommy John alternative) last year. Alburquerque has plenty of MLB experience, too, though he only received two major league frames last year.
Colon, 27, was the fourth overall pick in the 2010 draft but never lived up to that billing. He looked to have potentially carved out a spot on the Royals’ roster back in 2015 when he slashed .290/.356/.336 through 119 plate appearances as a rookie, but he followed that performance up with a lackluster .231/.294/.293 in a larger sample of 154 PAs last year. Thus far in 2017, Colon had played sparingly, logging 19 PAs and hitting and going 3-for-17 at the plate.
The 26-year-old O’Brien drew plenty of attention in Spring Training after clubbing seven homers and posting a 1.112 OPS, but the slugger’s production wilted in Omaha, where he got off to an unsightly .162/.235/.276 start through 115 plate appearances. The former catcher has long intrigued fans and MLB clubs with his considerable power, but strikeouts and a lack of defensive contributions have limited O’Brien’s opportunities. He did receive 79 MLB plate appearances with the D-backs in 2015-16, though he turned in a .176/.228/.446 batting line and punched out 32 times.