NOV. 23: The Royals announced that they have placed Sparkman on unconditional release waivers.
NOV. 20: The Royals have announced a series of roster moves (via Jeffrey Flanagan of MLB.com). Right-hander Glenn Sparkman and left-hander Gabe Speier have each been designated for assignment, while right-hander Chance Adams cleared waivers and was assigned outright to Triple-A Omaha. Those moves clear 40-man roster space for four players Kansas City added to protect them from the Rule 5 draft: outfielder Khalil Lee, catcher Sebastian Rivero, and left-handers Daniel Tillo and Angel Zerpa.
The 28-year-old Sparkman pitched in 31 games (23 starts) for Kansas City in 2019. He only managed a 6.02 ERA with a minuscule 13.4% strikeout rate in that time. The swingman started this season in the Royals’ bullpen but went down with a forearm strain after just five appearances.
Unlike Sparkman, Speier is exclusively a reliever. While he’s had some productive minor-league seasons, the 25-year-old hasn’t found much success at the game’s highest level. In seventeen MLB appearances for Kansas City over the past two seasons, Speier pitched to 7.62 ERA while walking an untenable 15.9% of opposing hitters.
Adams underwent Tommy John surgery last month and won’t pitch next season. The former well-regarded Yankee farmhand will try to work his way back into the mix in 2022.