September 14, 2013

Carlos Pena has appendectomy, likely out for season

Royals first baseman Carlos Pena is likely out for the season after undergoing an emergency appendectomy Saturday morning in a suburban Detroit hospital.

Veteran first baseman Carlos Peña is likely out for the season after undergoing an emergency appendectomy Saturday morning at a suburban Detroit hospital.

Peña, 35, is expected to be released this morning and return to Kansas City with the Royals after they complete their three-game weekend series against the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park.

“He had some stomach problems and gas pains (on Friday),” manager Ned Yost said. “They gave him some fluids. Thought it might have been food poisoning until he woke up (Saturday) morning.

“They took him to the hospital around 7 (a.m.), and they did the surgery around 10 o’clock this morning. Everything went well.”

The surgery took place at Henry Ford Hospital in Bloomfield, Mich.

The Royals signed Peña, a 13-year veteran, to a minor-league contract on Aug. 27 following his July 31 release by Houston, where he hit .209 with eight homers and 25 RBIs in 85 games.

Peña was six for 22 with two homers in five games at Class AAA Omaha before the Royals selected his contract for their major-league roster on Sept. 3. He appeared in four games and struck out in each of his three at-bats.

Bonifacio ejected

Emilio Bonifacio was ejected in the third inning after throwing down his helmet and batting gloves after getting called out on a close play at first base by umpire James Hoye on a pickoff by Tigers starter Doug Fister.

“I was mad,” Bonifacio said, “so I threw my helmet and started toward the dugout. I didn’t even look at him. It was close play. He thought I was out.”

Replays suggested Bonifacio was safe. When called out, he turned toward the dugout and, without saying anything, threw down his helmet and batting gloves.

Such conduct usually results in a fine for throwing equipment. Hoye chose instead to throw Bonifacio out of the game. Chris Getz replaced Bonifacio as the Royals’ second baseman.

Paulino has surgery

A lost season for right-hander Felipe Paulino officially came to an end last week when he underwent surgery to correct a suprascapular nerve decompression in his throwing shoulder.

Dr. Felix Savoie performed the procedure last Tuesday in New Orleans.

Trainer Nick Kenney said Paulino’s recovery schedule should enable him to “begin his offseason throwing program at his regularly scheduled time and expect him to be full ready for spring training.”

Paulino, 29, made seven minor-league rehab starts this season in his recovery from Tommy John surgery to replace a torn elbow ligament. Back and shoulder problems slowed his recovery and led to last Tuesday’s surgery.

The Royals face an offseason decision on Paulino, who is eligible for arbitration after making $1.75 million. He is 7-7 with a 3.55 ERA in 28 games since arriving in a May 26, 2011, trade from Colorado.

Saving runs

Here’s a defensive-stats update from the experts at Baseball Info Solutions: The Royals, entering Saturday, had saved 86 runs above average on defense for the season.

Baltimore was second among American League clubs at plus-34. Texas was third at plus-31. Seattle ranked last at minus-100.

The Royals are also showing the biggest one-year improvement among AL clubs at plus-73 after registering a plus-13 in 2012. Baltimore was second at plus-46 in moving from minus-12 to plus-34.

Los Angeles and Seattle tied for the biggest declines at a whopping minus-117 from 2012 to 2013.

TV reminder

Sunday’s series finale against the Tigers from Comerica Park, which begins at 12:08 p.m. Central time, can be seen on TBS.

Brian Anderson is handling the play-by-play duties with Cal Ripken and John Smoltz serving as analysts.

Starting Monday, when the Royals open their final home stand, all but one of the season’s remaining games will be shown by Fox Sports Kansas City.

The only remaining game not carried by FSKC is Sept. 21 against Texas at Kauffman Stadium, but it will be shown in Kansas City area by MLB Network.

Omaha takes crown

Lane Adams’ three-run triple keyed a six-run eighth inning that carried Class AAA Omaha to a 10-5 victory over Salt Lake (Angels) for its second Pacific Coast League title in three years.

The Storm Chasers produced a 19-hit assault that included three apiece from Adams, Ben Broussard, Rey Navarro and Manny Pina. Brian Sanches got the victory after holding Salt Lake to two runs in five innings.

Omaha won the series 3-1 and will now play Durham (Rays), the International League champions, on Tuesday in the Class AAA Triple-A championship game in Allentown, Pa.

The Royals’ affiliation with Omaha dates to the franchise’s inaugural 1969 season. Omaha previously won titles in 1969, 1970, 1978, 1990 and 2011.

Idaho Falls wins opener

Idaho Falls got six shutout innings from Jonathan Dziedzic and opened the best-of-three Pioneer League championship series with a 2-1 victory over visiting Helena (Brewers).

Hunter Dozier’s RBI double capped a two-run third inning that provided the Chukars with their only runs. The second and, if necessary, third games are Monday and Tuesday in Helena.

Idaho Falls is seeking its first title since becoming a Royals affiliate in 2004.

Instructional League

Seventy-four players are scheduled to report Sunday for the Instructional League at the Royals’ year-round complex in Surprise, Ariz. The first scheduled workout is Monday.

The 25-player advanced roster, which opens a 19-game schedule on Wednesday, includes infielders Hunter Dozier and Raul Adalberto Mondesi and outfielders Elier Hernandez and Bubba Starling.

Dozier is still playing for Idaho Falls in the Pioneer League championship series and will report shortly after its conclusion.

The remaining 49 players, taking part in the regular Instructional League, begin a 23-game schedule on Sept. 23. The Instructional League runs through Oct. 18.

Looking back

It was 36 years ago Sunday — Sept. 15, 1977 — that the Royals set a franchise record by sweeping a doubleheader over Oakland and extending their winning streak to 16 games.

The Royals lost the following day against Seattle before winning their next eight in a row. That 24-1 run spurred the Royals to their best record in franchise history at 102-60.

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