Danny Valencia hits while Mike Moustakas sits

05/20/2014 5:04 PM

06/03/2014 10:17 AM

Royals third baseman Danny Valencia took advantage of his opportunity.

Valencia started against White Sox right-hander Andre Rienzo. Until Tuesday, the Royals had been going with a platoon for about a month with Mike Moustakas starting against right-handers and Valencia against lefties.

But Moustakas has been mired in a season-long slump, and Royals manager Ned Yost made the call to go with Valencia.

“I just wanted to give Danny a shot,” Yost said.

It paid off Tuesday. Valencia smacked a two-run double in the second and added a single and a walk.

“Every time you get in there it’s an opportunity to help the team win,” Valencia said. “For me, I was able to get a couple of hits, but we came up short. A tough loss.”

Valencia, who has been an everyday player only once in his five major-league seasons, figures to get plenty of more at-bats this week. The Royals are scheduled to see a lefty, Jose Quintana, in the series closer and Friday in the opening game against the Angels in Anaheim, C.J. Wilson.

Moustakas lugged a .153 batting average into the game. His four home runs tie for the team lead but his on-base percentage lags at .225 and he’s slugging .323.

He got an at-bat on Tuesday but popped out to third as a pinch-hitter in the eighth inning.

Last week, Moustakas had a bases-clearing double and another two-base hit in the Royals 3-2 victory over the Rockies, but the day didn’t provide a jump start. He’s one of 12 since then.

Valencia entered Tuesday hitting .283 and has hit lefties well throughout his career — .333 this season vs. .188 against right-handers. For the next few days, he’ll see a variety.

“He got an opportunity now, three days in a row.Let’s see what develops,” Yost said.


Join the Discussion

The Kansas City Star is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Terms of Service