The Royals announced they’ve selected reliever Gabe Speier to the big league roster. Wade Davis has been placed on the 10-day injured list, retroactive to September 12, due to right shoulder inflammation. To clear space for Speier on the 40-man roster, Kansas City transferred lefty Richard Lovelady from the 10-day to the 60-day injured list.
Speier is up for the first time this season. The southpaw logged some big league time in 2019-20, combining to throw thirteen innings of eleven-run ball before being outrighted off the 40-man roster last offseason. Speier has spent all of this year with Triple-A Omaha and been dominant. Across 45 1/3 innings, the 26-year-old has posted a 2.98 ERA in a hitter-friendly environment. He’s punched out a strong 29.8% of batters faced while only walking 4.7% of opponents. Speier still has a couple minor league option years remaining, so he could be a long-term depth option for the Kansas City bullpen if he manages to stick on the 40-man roster.
Davis returned to Kansas City on a minor league deal last winter. He was arguably the best reliever in baseball for a stretch of his first stint in Royal blue, but he’d struggled mightily over the past couple seasons in Colorado and hasn’t righted the ship in return to K.C. Over 42 2/3 frames, Davis has managed just a 6.75 ERA with below-average strikeout and ground-ball rates. He’ll be a free agent again at the end of the season.
Lovelady’s season is officially over, although that’s not much of a surprise. The southpaw landed on the IL with a UCL sprain in late August and always seemed unlikely to return this year. He posted a 3.48 ERA over 20 2/3 innings this season, the largest workload he’s shouldered over his three years at the game’s highest level.