The Royals are still listing Wednesday’s starter as TBA, but the nod will likely go to former Reds right-hander Homer Bailey, Jeffrey Flanagan of MLB.com reports. Bailey threw in a minor league game late last week and built up to 6 1/3 innings, and he was already in the team’s clubhouse over the weekend. Flanagan further tweets that the Royals have at least discussed the possibility of pursuing recently released Marlins right-hander Dan Straily or recently designated Reds lefty Brandon Finnegan (a former Royals first-round pick), but neither move is likely to come to fruition. The organization, it would seem, is committed to giving Bailey a look with its lone open 40-man roster spot. It’s hard to imagine that a team in the Royals’ position couldn’t clear some additional 40-man room should they see fit, so perhaps the organization simply isn’t that interested in either Straily or Finnegan.
More from the division…
- The Twins organization announced the Opening Day rosters for its Triple-A club Monday, revealing that left-hander Stephen Gonsalves is opening the season on the injured list due to a left flexor/pronator strain. Infielder Nick Gordon is also opening the season on the IL due to acute gastritis (inflammation of his stomach lining). Both Gonsalves and Gordon entered the 2018 season ranked among baseball’s 100 best prospects, though neither elevated his status last season. Gonsalves did make his MLB debut, though he was tagged for a 6.57 ERA in a small sample of four starts. The 24-year-old Gonsalves impressed with a 2.96 ERA and nearly a strikeout per frame in 100 1/3 Triple-A innings, but his 4.9 BB/9 mark there was the worst of his career. Still, he’s an important depth piece should the Twins lose a starter to injury, making his recovery timeline (which has yet to be announced) worth monitoring for Twins fans. As for Gordon, he obliterated Double-A pitching for 42 games before posting a disastrous .212/.262/.283 slash in 99 Triple-A games (his first exposure to that level of pitching).
- Jon Jay began the season on the injured list due to a hip strain and discomfort in his back, and Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times reports that the veteran outfielder “doesn’t appear close to a return” to the White Sox. Manager Rick Renteria indicated over the weekend that Jay will be reevaluated when the team is back in Chicago. There’s also at least some degree of concern surrounding a velocity drop for righty Nate Jones. While Jones maintains that he doesn’t feel any discomfort in his right arm — he missed much of 2018 due to a pronator strain — his early results have been troubling (both in Spring Training and the regular season). Jones averaged 97.2 mph on his heater in each of the past two seasons but has sat at 94.9 mph so far in his first two outings of the 2019 campaign.