The Royals still have 38 players in camp. Manager Ned Yost wants to trim that number to 25 before the team leaves for a two-game exhibition series in Milwaukee.
There are not many spots left to be decided. Brett Hayes looks comfortable ensconced in the backup catcher’s spot, in part thanks to Ramon Hernandez’s lingering knee issues. The team is still committed to bring five outfielders, with Danny Valencia as their lone backup infielder.
With Omar Infante still nursing a bone spur in his right elbow – he’ll resume a throwing program on Saturday – Yost plans to play Valencia at second base as much as possible. Valencia is a natural third baseman.
Here is the lineup as Jason Vargas faces the Rangers:
1. Nori Aoki, RF.
2. Alcides Esobar, SS.
3. Eric Hosmer, 1B.
4. Justin Maxwell, DH.
5. Alex Gordon, LF.
6. Mike Moustakas, 3B.
7. Danny Valencia, 2B.
8. Brett Hayes, C.
9. Jarrod Dyson, CF.
Danny Duffy is slated to appear in relief.