KC Royals News: Pitcher heads for Omaha, former Royal gets another shot
While their players took the day off, the KC Royals personnel powers that be made a roster move Thursday morning.
Relief pitcher Dylan Coleman will, for at least the next couple of weeks, work not in the major leagues, but instead in the minors. The Royals optioned him to Triple-A Omaha where, under applicable transaction rules, he must stay for 15 days.
Coleman's demotion comes as no surprise to those who've watched him this season. His velocity is down about 3 mph on his four-seamer and sweeper, and his control worse than it was last year—he's walked seven in five innings this season.
According to MLB.com KC beat writer Anne Rogers, though, Coleman definitely appears fixable:
Coleman pitched two-thirds of an inning against Texas Monday and was charged with six runs and walked four. He's 0-0 with an 18.00 ERA. Including his five 2023 appearances, he's 5-2, 3.63 in 78 games as a Royal. All his wins and losses came last season when he had an excellent 2.78 ERA across 68 appearances.
He did not pitch in Omaha's 14-1 loss to Iowa Thursday.
A big KC Royals disappointment has returned to the major leagues
Ryan O'Hearn didn't overwhelm anyone in 2018, his first even partial season in the big leagues, but the .262/.353/.597 he slashed and 12 homers he hit in 44 games were more than enough to thrust him squarely into the Royals' plans.
Sadly, O'Hearn never developed into the star the club hoped he'd become. The 14 homers he clubbed in 2019 are more than he's managed in the four seasons since, his average sunk below .200 twice in those four campaigns, and he couldn't break into the starting lineup with any regularity. He eventually excelled as a pinch hitter, but that wasn't enough for the Royals, who shipped him to Baltimore for cash in early January.
The Orioles cleverly avoided spending a 40-man roster space on O'Hearn by squeezing him through waivers unclaimed, a move that allowed the club to send him to Triple-A Norfolk. There he flourished—through Wednesday and nine games, he'd homered four times and was slashing .300/.349/.725.
And Thursday? O'Hearn was 2-for-3 and drove in three runs.
With Baltimore. He's back in the big leagues.
The O's looked favorably on his minor league numbers and called him up in time for him to start at first base against Oakland, and those three runs he drove in were instrumental in the Orioles' 8-7 win.
Will this time be the charm for O'Hearn? Time will tell.