The Royals announced two moves in preparation of starting the second half. They’ll recall second baseman Chris Getz and reliever Kelvin Herrera from Omaha and send Johnny Giavotella and Everett Teaford back down to Triple A.
Getz was optioned on June 22nd after opening the year with a .214/.276/.286 line in 157 plate appearances. A week later, Jeff Francoeur was designated for assignment and Johnny Giavotella was called up to play second base. Dayton Moore said Giavotella would be the regular second baseman at the time.
He played ten games. He never played more than four in a row.
At this point, I think most Royals fans are just exhausted with the up and down of Chris Getz vs. Johnny Giavotella. I’m tired of it, too. The Royals stated that Giavotella would get an the opportunity to play everyday, then got 38 plate appearances. He didn’t hit, though his defense looked much better than it ever has. I would rather see the Royals go a different route than Getz if Giavotella isn’t going to get a real look – or even half the opportunity Getz received – to evaluate him at the big league level. Bring up Irving Falu. Bring up Anthony Seratelli. Getz’s ceiling is to be worse than league average. At least make a move that says “we understand that this isn’t working, and we’re going to try a different route”.
The Royals can’t expect much of anything from their second base position. Elliot Johnson isn’t hitting. Johnny Giavotella didn’t hit, and Chris Getz wasn’t hitting.
Somewhat related: a few hours before the Royals announced this move, they also announced that Pedro Ciriaco, who had been claimed on waivers from the Padres, was placed on waivers, cleared, and assigned to Omaha outright. He was out of options but teams can place a player in their minor leagues one time without that player accepting it. Ciriaco had not been sent outright to the minors yet, so there he is in Omaha as infield depth.
Kelvin Herrera was sent to Omaha back in May to get his confidence back, returned on June 2nd, held opponents scoreless in six straight appearances, but then allowed runs in three of his next four and walked a batter in each game. The Royals sent him back to Omaha to start three games and work through lineups more than once so he would have to use his secondary pitches more often, then shifted him back to relief appearances.
In 13.2 innings back in Omaha (and in Northwest Arkansas during the Triple A All-Star Break), Herrera struck out 21, walked three, and gave up two runs. In his big league work this year, he has a 5.20 ERA in 27.2 innings. Teaford will go back to Omaha after one day with the big league roster as an extra arm on Sunday. He faced three batters, allowing one hit.