Two major KC Royals are absent from Rangers series finale

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The KC Royals entered Globe Life Field already dropping two games to the Texas Rangers, but entered the game with two absences. Before releasing Sunday's lineup, the Royals announced on social media that manager Matt Quatraro wouldn't be managing while he "tends to a personal matter." Also, the Royals had an amended lineup that saw designated hitter Adam Frazier move out of the leadoff spot and off the lineup entirely.

The KC Royals are down a manager and leadoff hitter heading into Sunday's game.

Bench coach Paul Hoover will serve as Kansas City's manager Sunday as the Royals look to avoid a sweep in Texas. This will be the sixth game Hoover manages for Kansas City, posting a 2-3 record last year after Quatraro tested positive for COVID-19.

Second baseman Nick Loftin moved up to Sunday's leadoff spot, while Nelson Velázquez fills in as the designated hitter. This marks Loftin's second time batting leadoff for the Royals this season, while his first featured a hitless performance against the Oakland Athletics on June 20.

Frazier's absence led to some wild speculation on Royals social media, but Bally Sports' Joel Goldberg provided clarity Sunday afternoon. Frazier and centerfielder Garrett Hampson had a near-disastrous play in the outfield, that saw both players sliding for a catch. Frazier suffered a right thumb sprain on the play, according to Goldberg.

The veteran utilityman has slashed .105/.105/.158 since June 10, good for a .263 OPS. Any updated lineup is rare for Kansas City, but with Michael Massey's hopeful return and Frazier's struggles at the plate, there was plenty of pre-game speculation surrounding Frazier.

Velázquez, batting seventh, has gone 2-for-10 on Kansas City's road trip, but singled as a pinch hitter in Saturday's 6-0 loss. The outfielder is batting .444 with two RBI in nine games as a substitute this season.

The Royals enter Sunday with a 42-36 record, good for third in the AL Central. They have already lost the series' first two games and six of the last eight games they have played on this road trip, which included stops against the Oakland A's and Los Angeles Dodgers.

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