Kansas City Royals May Keep Additional Bench Option


It has been a bit of a debate as to how the Kansas City Royals and Ned Yost will handle the 25th man on their roster. For much of the Spring, they had mentioned the possibility of putting together an eight man bullpen, at least for the start of the season. Such an idea had merit, as a deeper bullpen could allow the Royals starters to ease into a season a bit more, presumably saving them for the stretch run.

However, it seems as though that plan may have been put aside, at least for the present. Instead of having that eighth reliever, Yost is leaning towards having another bat on the bench. In fact, Yost has gone so far as to state that, if they do have an additional player on the bench, he would likely prefer an extra outfielder.

Given the continued health issues that Omar Infante is dealing with, that would seem to be a strange choice. While carrying an extra outfielder would theoretically reward Paulo Orlando for his excellent performance thus far in Spring Training, would that really be the best option for the Kansas City Royals?

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It would certainly seem to make more sense to carry another utility infielder. Even though Christian Colon may be all but guaranteed a spot on the Opening Day roster, he cannot be expected to cover everywhere on the infield. Given that Infante has had difficulty with his elbow for most of Spring, the Kansas City Royals may need another player to play around the infield.

Logically, it would seem that a player like Ryan Roberts, who can not only play third, but may be a solid platoon partner for Moustakas given his career .261/.337/.435 batting line against lefty pitching, would be that 25th man. However, Roberts has not exactly lit the Cactus League afire thus far, producing a .231/.286/.346 batting line.

Ned Yost also stated that his determination as to who to keep will be based on who he feels will help the Royals win more during the early portion of the season. Based on their performances thus far, that player may well turn out to be Paulo Orlando. Or, Yost could reverse course and have that eighth reliever if a pitcher truly steps forward.

There are thirteen days left until Opening Day, so nothing is exactly set in stone. However, at this point, it seems as though the Kansas City Royals may have an additional option on the bench when the games truly begin to count.

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