Royals general manager Dayton Moore is not content to sit pat.
By PETE GRATHOFF
The Kansas City Star
With a significant free-agent signing and two big trades under his belt this offseason, Moore is not merely counting the days to spring training next month.
Were continuing to look at options and see whats available before we actually start camp, Moore said. Well continue to search and look for opportunities to improve the team.
Since finishing the overhaul of the rotation early in December, the Royals have signed outfielders Endy Chavez, Xavier Nady and Willy Taveras, along with infielder Miguel Tejada. Each received a minor-league contract but all have major-league experience.
The deal for Tejada raised eyebrows for two reasons. One, Tejada said he will make $1.1 million if he makes the major-league roster with a potential for an additional $400,000 in performance bonuses.
Second, ESPN Deportes reported that Tejada will be added to the Royals 40-man roster when there is room.
While declining to discuss the financial aspects of the deal, Moore said only that Tejada, 38, will get an invitation to spring training.
Its a minor-league deal, obviously, and well evaluate it through spring training and see where he fits, Moore said. Hes obviously got a great track record and hes playing really well this winter. Weve got a chance to see him a lot.
Felix Francisco, one of our scouts, is actually a GM in the (Dominican Winter League) and has seen him play quite a bit and recommended we sign him.
Francisco is the general manager for La Romana in the Dominican League where Tejada is playing for Aguilas, which is in the playoffs. In 34 regular-season games, Tejada hit .284 with four homers and 19 RBIs.
Former major-league scout Bernie Pleskoff noted that Tejada, who spent the majority of his career in the majors as a shortstop, played the bulk of his games this winter at second base, while also spending time at short and third.
Tejada, a 15-year veteran who was the 2002 American League MVP with Oakland, last played in the majors with the Giants in 2011. He split time mostly between shortstop and third base, but also appeared in four games at second base, his only major-league experience at that position.
Second base for the Royals is shaping up to be a battle between Chris Getz and Johnny Giavotella, but Moore said Tejada, should he make the roster, could be a backup at second and around the infield.
Tejada, who also played for Baltimore, Houston and San Diego, has a career .285 average with a .793 OPS, 304 homers and 1,282 RBIs. He signed with the Royals on Dec. 31, the same day as Chavez.
Moore said Chavez, like the other two outfielders, will be given a chance to make the team in spring training.
Were just bringing him in to compete as well, Moore said. (Hes) a left-handed bat, can play all three outfield positions, a veteran guy, another guy who is playing well in winter ball. Hell just give us some more depth in camp.
Chavez hit .359 with 15 walks in 30 games in the Dominican Winter League. He hit a home run in one playoff game.
Here are how some other Royals players fared in winter ball.
• Salvador Perez led his Venezuelan team (Tiburones de La Guaira) in batting average (.371), RBIs (39) and OPS (1.041) in 32 games. He also had eight homers, 10 doubles and scored 23 runs.
• Alcides Escobar led his Venezuelan team (Cardenales de Lara) with a .349 average. He also had 16 RBIs in 26 games.
• Manny Pina hit .261 in 13 games in Venezuela.
• Irving Falu hit .324 with an .839 OPS in 36 games in the Puerto Rican League
• Christian Colon batted .301 with a league-best 13 stolen bases in Puerto Rico.
Royals sign pitcher Boyer
On Thursday, the Royals signed right-handed pitcher Blaine Boyer to a minor-league contract. He last appeared in the majors in 2011 with the Mets. He previously pitched for Atlanta, St. Louis and Arizona. Boyer has made 233 relief appearances in his career.
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