A new pitcher heads for the KC Royals, another gets bad news

A Pirate is becoming a Royal.
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The KC Royals finally parted ways with oft-injured Adalberto Mondesi just before spring training began two winters ago, trading the long-on-potential, short-on-playing-time Mondesi to Boston for promising pitcher Josh Taylor.

Taylor brought an injury history of his own to the Royals; sadly, he added to it this spring when, after striking out six, walking none, and holding opponents to a single run in six appearances, left biceps soreness forced him to the 15-day Injured List a couple of days before Opening Day.

Now, it appears things could be worse than they initially seemed — the Royals moved Taylor to the 60-day IL Sunday, so he won't be ready to pitch for them until at least early June. But the transfer served a collateral purpose.

It created space on the club's 40-man roster for a new pitcher.

Kansas City has acquired Colin Selby from Pittsburgh

The Royals announced after Sunday's series sweep-clinching victory over the White Sox they've picked up righthander Colin Selby from the Pirates. To get him, the club gave up minor league pitching prospect Connor Oliver, a late selection in last year's draft who appeared once in the Arizona Complex League after signing last summer. Assigned to Single-A Columbia to begin this season, Oliver hadn't pitched yet.

Whether Taylor's injury had much to do with acquiring Selby remains to be seen, although the two are probably at lest tangentially related — losing Taylor immediately decreased the number of pitchers with big league experience available to the Royals, but gaining Selby supplements that crew.

How will the Royals utilize their new hurler? Interestingly enough, Selby can start or relieve. He spent the first two years of his professional career starting exclusively and went 1-3 with a 4.15 ERA in Rookie ball (2018) before improving to 6-3, 2.97 for the Pirates' Greensboro A affiliate in 2019.

But Pittsburgh made him a reliever after that, and he saved six games and won three across 31 Greensboro appearances during minor league ball's 2021 post-pandemic return. Selby spent 2022 in Double-A and Triple-A, and returned to Triple-A last year before the Pirates gave him his first big league shot in August. He finished the campaign with a 9.00 ERA and 2-2 record in 21 appearances.

The Pirates designated him for assignment April 5; he'd pitched twice for Triple-A Indianapolis and struck out and walked three in two innings.

The Royals immediately assigned Selby to Triple-A Omaha.

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