The Royals reinstated top prospect Hunter Dozier from the 60-day disabled list on Thursday and optioned him to Class AAA Omaha. Dozier, who sustained a strained oblique muscle near the end of spring training, was already playing for Omaha on a rehab assignment.
To make room on the 40-man roster for Dozier, the club placed outfielder Paulo Orlando on the 60-day disabled list. Orlando, who began the season as the Royals’ starting right fielder, suffered a fractured left tibia after fouling a ball off his shin on May 12. Orlando cannot be reinstated to the roster before July 31, though he can begin a rehab assignment before that date.
Dozier, 25, has played five games on his rehab assignment, including three for Class A Wilmington and two at Omaha. He is 5 for 16 with two doubles, two walks and eight strikeouts since returning. A first-round pick in 2013, Dozier made his major-league debut last September. He opened the 2017 season as one of the top position prospects in the Royals’ system.