Royals

Royals spring training roster breakdown

Updated: 2014-02-09T00:07:07Z

By ANDY McCULLOUGH

The Kansas City Star

The Royals will take their first step toward 2014 on Friday, when pitchers and catchers report to the complex in Surprise, Ariz. After 2013, their most successful season since 1989, they enter camp with most of the roster set. The lineup is in place, and few position battles will be staged.

The major competition will involve the fifth spot in the starting rotation. With Bruce Chen back in the fold, general manager Dayton Moore listed Yordano Ventura, Danny Duffy, Luke Hochevar, Wade Davis and Chris Dwyer as the most likely candidates. Those who miss out on the starting role could move into the bullpen.

Here is a look at the 40-man roster and the 20 others invited to camp.

40-MAN ROSTER

PITCHERS

No.PlayerB-THt.Wt.AgeComment
67Francisley BuenoL-L5-1021532Finished 2013 with 2.66 ERA for Omaha.
52Bruce ChenL-L6-221536Useful swingman is back again, will start in rotation.
62Maikel CletoR-R6-325024Talented right-hander showed flashes after joining Royals organization last summer.
31Louis ColemanR-R6-420527Didn’t give up an earned run in his first 19 appearances last year.
55Tim CollinsL-L5-716524Still struggles with control, but successful against left-handed batters.
43Aaron CrowR-R6-319527Former first-round pick has established himself as quality middle reliever.
17Wade DavisR-R6-522528He’ll compete for rotation slot, but could be bound for bullpen.
41Danny DuffyL-L6-320025On comeback trail from Tommy John surgery, team hopes for breakout.
36Chris DwyerR-L6-321025A fringe contender for fifth spot, but important as depth.
11Jeremy GuthrieR-R6-120034Restructured his contract after making 33 starts with 4.04 ERA.
40Kelvin HerreraR-R5-1020024Flamethrower whiffed 11.4 batters per nine out of bullpen.
44Luke HochevarR-R6-521530The former first-overall pick is in his final year of team control.
56Greg HollandR-R5-1020028He flourished as the closer in 2013; now the team has to worry about his salary.
49Donnie JosephL-L6-319026Command is shaky, but punched out 84 batters in 54 2/3 innings at Class AAA.
38John LambL-L6-420523Former high-profile prospect has endured rocky road back from Tommy John surgery.
48Michael MariotR-R5-1119525Shifted to bullpen full-time in 2013, with decent results.
46Justin MarksL-L6-319526Gave up more than a hit per inning in Omaha last year.
33James ShieldsR-R6-421532The anchor of the rotation, he’s primed for a nine-figure contract next winter.
51Jason VargasL-L6-021531Far from flashy, the $32 million addition averaged 190 innings per year since 2010.
30Yordano VenturaR-R5-1118022He sizzled in a big-league debut, but his role for 2014 hasn’t been decided.

CATCHERS

No.PlayerB-THt.Wt.AgeComment
12Brett HayesR-R6-020029With George Kottaras gone, Hayes could become backup backstop.
26Francisco PenaR-R6-223024Former Mets farmhand is son of Tony Pena.
13Salvador PerezR-R6-324523The backbone of the defense hopes to build on a strong full-season effort.

INFIELDERS

No.PlayerB-THt.Wt.AgeComment
37Pedro CiriacoR-R6-018028With Emilio Bonifacio out of the picture, could make club as utility man.
24Christian ColonR-R5-1018524Was the fourth choice in the 2010 draft, one pick after Manny Machado was taken.
61Cheslor CuthbertR-R6-119021Had trouble adjusting to action in Class AA last season.
2Alcides EscobarR-R6-119527Can he rebound to be the .293 hitter he was in 2012?
9Johnny GiavotellaR-R5-818026Team went after Omar Infante to fill long-standing void at second base.
35Eric HosmerL-L6-422024After a strong second half, Hosmer could become a superstar in 2014.
14Omar InfanteR-R5-1119532The team stretched its budget to add this former Tiger.
8Mike MoustakasL-R6-021025Patience is wearing thin after another troubled campaign.
19Danny ValenciaR-R6-222029He excelled against left-handed pitchers in 2013.

OUTFIELDERS

No.PlayerB-THt.Wt.AgeComment
63Lane AdamsR-R6-220024Hit 30 doubles between Class A and AA.
23Norichika AokiL-R5-917532The new leadoff hitter has a .355 on-base percentage in his two MLB seasons.
6Lorenzo CainR-R6-220528Still an excellent defender; his bat remains middling.
1Jarrod DysonL-R5-916029He stole 34 bases in just 87 games last season.
4Alex GordonL-R6-122029The organization’s premier player, he is coming off his weakest offensive season since 2010.
27Justin MaxwellR-R6-522030He looks dynamic at times, but consistency is his issue.
TBACarlos PegueroL-L6-526027The Royals just acquired the hefty slugger from Seattle.

DESIGNATED HITTER

No.PlayerB-THt.Wt.AgeComment
16Billy ButlerR-R6-124027Power dipped in 2013, and finished with lowest OPS (.787) since 2008.

NON-ROSTER INVITES

PITCHERS

No.PlayerB-THt.Wt.AgeComment
66Jason AdamR-R6-421922Overland Park native struggled in Class AA in 2013.
73Scott AlexanderL-L6-118624Reliever posted 3.00 ERA between Class A and AA.
70Aaron BrooksR-R6-422023Walked just 22 batters in 160 minor-league innings last season.
71Sugar Ray MarimonR-R6-119525Figures to be Class AAA depth after decent AA campaign.
68Guillermo MotaR-R6-624040After 100-game suspension in 2012, did not pitch in majors last year.
53Brad PennyR-R6-423035A two-time All Star, last pitched in relief for Giants in 2012.
60Jon RauchR-R6-1129035Posted a 7.35 ERA for Marlins in 2013 after solid year for Mets in 2012.
25Everett TeafordL-L6-016529Recently cleared waivers and accepted assignment to Class AAA Omaha.
47Cory WadeR-R6-218530Former Dodger and Yankee appeared for Mets, Rays and Cubs in minors last year.
39P.J. WaltersR-R6-421528Pitched sparingly for Twins out of bullpen in recent years.
15Kyle ZimmerR-R6-321522Team hopes top prospect will shine in majors by midseason.

CATCHERS

No.PlayerB-THt.Wt.AgeComment
69Juan GraterolR-R6-117024Part-time backstop for Class AA Northwest Arkansas last year.
50Ramon HernandezR-R6-02203715-year veteran posted a .728 OPS in 17 games with Dodgers.
32Adam MooreR-R6-321529Batted .191 in Omaha, with eight homers.

INFIELDERS

No.PlayerB-THt.Wt.AgeComment
45Jason DonaldR-R6-119529Former part-timer for Indians spent all of 2013 in minors.
34Brandon LairdR-R6-121526Played sparingly for Astros last two seasons, can handle corners.

OUTFIELDERS

No.PlayerB-THt.Wt.AgeComment
7Jorge BonifacioR-R6-119520Tantalizing power prospect flashed potential in minors last year.
54Gorkys HernandezR-R6-019026Traded to Royals from Miami last July.
65Melky MesaR-R6-119027Toolsy switch-hitter washed out of Yankees system.
72Paulo OrlandoR-R6-221028Has been a consistent contributor to Royals minor-league teams in recent years.

To reach Andy McCullough, The Star’s Royals reporter, send email to rmccullough@kcstar.com. Follow him on Twitter @McCulloughStar.

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