ST. LOUIS — Second baseman Chris Getz exited in the first inning after suffering an injury to the lower part of his left leg while chasing after Carlos Beltran’s ground single up the middle.
By BOB DUTTON
The Kansas City Star
“When I tried to plant, it just kind of went over,” said Getz, who exited Busch Stadium wearing a protective boot on his left foot.
“I’ve rolled my ankle before, but this isn’t ankle-related. (The pain) kind of starts down here (at the back of the foot) and runs all the way up to the knee. It’s not the calf muscle. It’s this other muscle (on the side of the leg).”
The Royals characterized the injury as “a left lateral lower strain” and said Getz will be evaluated further today in Houston.
Getz said the boot made the injury look worse than it is — or so he hopes.
“(The boot) is supposed to be less work for the muscles to let them rest,” he said.
“I’ve just got to hope for the best and get some more information tomorrow.”
Of note: Second baseman Johnny Giavotella was pulled from Class AAA Omaha’s game at Nashville shortly after Getz left the field at Busch Stadium.
Getz’s injury occurred just five days after he returned from a three-week stay on the disabled list because of a bruised left rib cage. Yuniesky Betancourt, who replaced Getz at second base, later hit a game-winning homer.
Paulino likely to return
If all goes as planned, right-hander Felipe Paulino will rejoin the Royals’ rotation June 25 for the start of a three-game series against Tampa Bay at Kauffman Stadium.
Paulino was 3-1 with a 1.67 ERA when he suffered a strained right groin June 6 in the first inning against Minnesota. He tested his recovery Sunday in a pregame bullpen workout as the final step before heading to the minors for rehab start.
“Everything is good,” he said, “and I’m really positive right now. So I think it’s just going to be one more week.”
Plans call for Paulino to start Wednesday for Class AA Northwest Arkansas against Tulsa.
• Outfielder Lorenzo Cain is scheduled to start his rehab assignment tonight at Northwest Arkansas.
It will mark his first true game action since suffering a torn left hip flexor on April 24 while on a rehab assignment for a strained left groin.
One for the books
Bruce Chen became the first Royals pitcher in history to get a hit as a pinch hitter when he grounded a single through the left side of the infield while batting for Tim Collins with one out in the 13th inning.
“When I first went up there,” Chen deadpanned, “I was looking for something to drive. Then with two strikes, I had to take my two-strike approach and go with the ball to the opposite field.”
The Royals used seven relievers to cover nine innings Sunday.
So it’s no surprise Yost admitted a move to summon a fresh arm from the minors is possible before tonight’s series opener in Houston
“I’m going to have to look at the bullpen,” he said, “to see what we can do to fortify it.”
Lefty Tim Collins tied a career high by working three innings.
Closer Jonathan Broxton worked more than one inning for the first time since undergoing surgery last September to remove a bone spur and assorted loose bodies from his elbow.
“That’s not my goal to go out there and go two,” he said Sunday. “But sometimes, you’ve got to bite the bullet and do what you’ve got to do for your teammates after they’ve been out there battling.”
Heading to Houston
Billy Butler was ticketed to return to the lineup tonight even before hitting his game-tying homer in the ninth inning.
He did not start any of the games in St. Louis.
Butler will replace Eric Hosmer at first to provide the lineup with an extra right-handed bat against Astros lefty J.A. Happ.
Hosmer started all three games in St. Louis, in large part, because the Cardinals used three right-handed starters.
Hosmer went one for seven on Sunday and finished the series at three for 16.
• Tim Collins had three more strikeouts and leads all American League relievers with 49.
• Mike Moustakas went three for six and closed out a seven-for-15 weekend that raised his average to .278.
• Billy Butler’s homer was the first by a Royals pinch-hitter since Wilson Betemit on July 2, 2011 at Colorado. It was the 71st pinch homer in franchise history.
• The Royals signed their 34th-round pick, outfielder Marsalis Holloway of Columbia State Community College in Tennessee. Twenty-nine of the club’s 40 picks are now under contract.
• Umpire Kerwin Danley was on medical leave after being treated for dehydration after duty behind the plate in Saturday’s game. Mike Estabrook filled Danley’s spot on the crew.
To reach Bob Dutton, call 816-234-4352 or send email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him at Twitter.com/Royals_Report.