The Royals' outfield could be getting a new look as soon as Friday night.
All signs point to the Royals putting outfielder Jarrod Dyson on the disabled list because of an ankle injury he suffered Wednesday at Anaheim when he climbed the wall attempting to catch a Mike Trout home run.
The Royals are expected to recall outfielder David Lough from Class AAA Omaha to replace Dyson on the 25-man roster. Lough, who has a .340 average with 17 RBIs and a .393 OBP, was held out of Thursday's game in Omaha.
However, even if Lough is recalled, it's uncertain how the move will affect playing time for right fielder Jeff Francoeur.
Increased playing time in recent games for Dyson and Elliot Johnson stemmed primarily, Royals manager Ned Yost said, from a desire to ride a player’s hot streak.
Yost dismissed the suggestion that he’s instituted a platoon arrangement in the outfield or at second base.
“I could play Francoeur (on Friday) against a right-hander,” he said. “Then it’s not a platoon. I’m going day-to-day right now."
Dyson started five of the previous eight games and, in addition to the speed he added to the lineup, he provided eight extra-base hits in 42 plate appearances, as many as Francoeur has in 128.
“Everyone wants to jump on the Frenchy bandwagon,” Yost said. “They want to say, ‘OK, he’s platooning.’ I’m not going there. Dyson is swinging the bat well right now, so he’s going to get more playing time."
Of course, that was before Dyson's injury.
Yost suggested it was a similar situation at second.
“It’s like second base right now," he said. "Elliot Johnson has played the majority of time in the last week. Is he the everyday second baseman? No. I’m trying to ride a hot player. I go from day-to-day.”
The Royals view Johnson as their primary utility player, but he started eight of the last 14 games — largely because second baseman Chris Getz is mired in a four-for-47 slump and batting .193. Johnson’s response to the increased opportunity is 11 hits in his last 25 at-bats, which has his average up to .302.
“We’re riding Elliot because he’s swinging the bat well now,” Yost said. “Getzie is scuffling a little bit, but that all changes (at some point). When Getzie gets hot, we’ll ride him.”