SURPRISE, Ariz. — The forecast was better Saturday here in the Valley of the Sun after rain washed out two games Friday for the Royals: an afternoon contest against Cleveland at Surprise Stadium, and a night game against Colorado in Scottsdale.
By BOB DUTTON
The Kansas City Star
Theres just a small chance of rain, although temperatures arent expected to top 60 when the Royals head to Old Scottsdale for a 2:05 p.m. game Central time against the San Francisco Giants.
No radio for the game, but you can hear a webcast at www.royals.com.
The big news Friday was the revelation that right-hander Wade Davis is nursing some minor shoulder inflammation, which will cause him to miss his scheduled start Saturday against the Giants.
Manager Ned Yost insisted the injury is minor, which seems reinforced by Davis throwing a bullpen workout a few days ago. He still felt it just a little bit, Yost said, and it didnt make any sense to force him out.
Even so, its worrisome considering how injuries last spring decimated the pitching staff.
Davis ailment means Yordano Ventura, one of the organizations top prospects, will start in Scottsdale. He has thrown two scoreless innings in each of his last two outings.
It could be Venturas last appearance in big-league camp. Hes slotted to open the season at Class AA Northwest Arkansas, and with less than three weeks before camp ends, the Royals have started trimming their roster.
Those cuts began Friday when lefty Noel Arguelles, who started the afternoon game, was optioned to Northwest Arkansas.
Five more players were reassigned to minor-league camp: catchers Manny Pina and Julio Rodriguez, outfielder Luis Durango, left-hander Ryan Verdugo and right-hander Sugar Ray Marimon.
As a matter of form, players on the 40-man roster must be optioned to the minors; non-roster invites are simply reassigned.
Here is Saturdays lineup: CF Jarrod Dyson, SS Elliot Johnson, 1B Billy Butler, DH Max Ramirez, RF David Lough, 2B Johnny Giavotella, 3B Anthony Seratelli, C Brett Hayes, LF Endy Chavez and Ventura.
World Baseball Classic notables:
• Right-hander Luis Mendoza pitched two scoreless innings in Mexicos 5-2 victory over the United States.
• First baseman Eric Hosmer went one for four with an RBI single in the USAs loss. He also committed an error.
• Lefty reliever Tim Collins faced three batters in the eighth for the USA and gave up a hit, a walk and registered a strikeout.
• Irving Falu played second base and went one for three in Puerto Ricos 3-0 victory over Spain.
Keep those questions coming on twitter to @Royals_Report. Here is todays exchange:
@AlanSchwegman: Is Wade Davis injury considered serious?
It doesnt sound like it at this point. Hes already throwing again on the side. This really does seem precautionary, but lets see (1) if he starts on his next turn through the cycle and (2) how he looks.
@andrewholderkc: Do u think Chris Getz has a legitimate shot at home run record? I expect big time power
His career best is two in 2009 while playing for the White Sox. So, sure, thats in reach.
@LadyRoyalPurple: is the press box at SRF heated? Are there any empty seats? #itscolddownhere
Air conditioning was on in the box Friday night at Salt River Fields. It seemed to be anyway. But there was no wind or rain. Those were hardy fans who came out given the weather forecast.
@85royal: When there is a PTBNL or cash as in the Hottovy deal is there a potential pool of players agreed upon when the trade is made?
Thats often how it works. It also often means the two teams have agreed on a player selected in the previous years draft. Those players cant be traded for one year.
@RoyalDUF: How many scouts at the USA-Mexico game. Wonder if any looking at Mendoza for possible trade value later on.
Those games are well scouted, but I think the Royals are increasingly hesitant to trade any of the three competitors for the fifth spot (Luke Hochevar, Bruce Chen or Luis Mendoza) unless they get exactly what they want.
Wade Davis shoulder injury, which seems minor, is a reminder of how quickly pitching depth can disappear.
@audra_marvin: Just out of curiosity, if a player is a disaster in the WBC, will that affect the club's view of him regarding breaking camp
Theres still at least 10 days or so left once those players return. How they perform in that span is far more crucial.
If you (or anybody) is thinking Eric Hosmer, hell be the first baseman on Opening Day no matter what he does in the WBC.
@limaboykc: I heard Moose tried hitting right handed in the cage the other day. Any possibility he might try switch hitting?
Come on, now. I answered this previously. The quick answer is no.