You will always hear the nickname “Mondi” come from the mouths of Royals players and staff members.
But it may be time for fans to amend Google searches.
The athlete formerly known as Raul A. Mondesi is kicking the old moniker. He will go by Adalberto Mondesi going forward, the Royals announced Thursday.
It’s essentially “Alberto” with the word “add” in front, pronounced ADD-al-bear-toe.
The name was a mouthful for manager Ned Yost. Instead of using the “A” sound in the second syllable, he went with an “O” for “Adolberto.”
“I ain’t spittin’ it out,” Yost said.
Mondesi, 22, was originally known as Adalberto when he first signed with the Royals as a free agent in 2011. Upon his major-league debut during the 2015 World Series, he started going by Raul Mondesi, like his father, the former Dodgers star who in September was sentenced to eight years in prison in his native Dominican Republic for embezzling from the town for which he was once mayor.
The younger Mondesi said he wasn’t too hard-pressed about the name people called him, but he thought a change might do him some good. Mondesi, a longtime prospect at shortstop, won the starting job at second base last year but was demoted within weeks when he struggled at the major-league level.
With Alcides Escobar back on a one-year contract, it’s unlikely Mondesi will log significant time at shortstop in the major leagues this season. There is still a slim chance Mondesi might beat Whit Merrifield for the job at second base, like last spring.
“I wanna go back to that name because I feel comfortable,” said Mondesi, who grew up in the Dominincan Republic. “That’s my second name and everybody in the Dominican — they know me by that name.”