Rain washes out Royals' intrasquad contest

Rain washes out Royals' intrasquad contest

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Heavy rains washed out the Royals' intrasquad game on Monday, and manager Ned Yost said the club doesn't plan on making it up on Tuesday.

"Hopefully the conditions will be better Tuesday and we can have our normal routine then," Yost said.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Royals impressed with Infante's perseverance

Second baseman battled various injuries last season

Royals impressed with Infante's perseverance

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Royals second baseman Omar Infante had one of the most demanding physical seasons of his career in 2014.

Infante battled through shoulder issues, elbow issues and back issues. He was nailed in the face by a pitch. His right arm throbbed throughout September and the postseason.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hochevar straight forward on throwing curveballs

Hochevar straight forward on throwing curveballs

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Right-hander Luke Hochevar remembers the exact pitch that he blew out his elbow on last Spring Training -- a curveball.

"I remember throwing it and I felt a pop and burn," Hochevar said on Sunday. "I didn't think a whole lot about it at the time because I'd been battling tightness and soreness since 2010 really. Then, I threw a cutter to get the final out of that inning and got back to the bench, and I started to wonder what was going on.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Tracy Ringolsby

Gordon emerges as standout of impressive '05 Draft class

Royals star more consistent than peers Braun, Zimmerman and Tulo

Gordon emerges as standout of impressive '05 Draft class

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- In the midst of a discussion of the importance of the coming season for Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun, Milwaukee general manager Doug Melvin paused, and smiled.

"The game is a challenge," he said. "A few years ago, there were questions about Alex Gordon, and the buzz was about Braun, [Troy] Tulowitzki and [Ryan] Zimmerman. Now? They've all had their problems the last couple years and you'd say Gordon has become the most consistent."

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Tracy Ringolsby is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Blanton brushing off shaky intrasquad outing

Blanton brushing off shaky intrasquad outing

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Right-hander Joe Blanton hasn't pitched in the Major Leagues since 2013, and he hasn't faced a hitter since last April, when he pitched in two games for Oakland's top affiliate before retiring from baseball.

Blanton's road back got off to a bumpy start in the Royals' first intrasquad game of the spring. He gave up four straight hits, including a booming double by Eric Hosmer off the center-field screen. After striking out Erik Kratz, Blanton served up a screaming two-run double to left to Ryan Roberts before pitching coach Dave Eiland said that was enough and called the inning.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Yost offers thoughts on Finnegan in 'pen

Yost offers thoughts on Finnegan in 'pen

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- There is a perception by some observers that keeping rookie left-hander Brandon Finnegan on the 25-man roster and in the Royals' bullpen would be "wasting" him because he was a first-round Draft pick chosen to be an eventual starter.

Manager Ned Yost doesn't see it that way at all.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gore hopes to be running with Royals again in postseason

Speedy outfielder plans on improving bat in Minors before coming up

Gore hopes to be running with Royals again in postseason

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- If there's one guy you'd think can't wait for September and October to come around, it's Royals outfielder Terrance Gore.

Gore was the Royals' secret weapon last season after September callups and in the postseason.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Flynn surprised to be issued Shields' old number

Flynn surprised to be issued Shields' old number

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Left-hander Brian Flynn didn't ask for uniform No. 33.

"I was surprised when they gave it to me," Flynn said, adding that he knew right away that it was James Shields' old number.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Yost trusts players to take care of themselves off the field

With news of Sale's accident, Royals skipper not worried about own team

Yost trusts players to take care of themselves off the field

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- News that White Sox left-hander Chris Sale -- likely the Opening Day starter against the Royals on April 6 if healthy -- suffered an avulsion fracture on the lateral side of his right foot naturally was of interest to Royals manager Ned Yost.

Sale is expected to be out at least three weeks and is questionable for the opener.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Young Mondesi shows promise at camp

Still in his teens, MLB's No. 40 prospect comes from talented family

Young Mondesi shows promise at camp

SURPRISE, Ariz -- It was Photo Day at Royals camp Friday morning, the time of spring when players suit up in their game uniforms, hold up a sheet of white paper with their name written in black permanent marker across the front and smile for the camera.

They pose with bats and gloves. They autograph dozens of baseballs.

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Jesse Sanchez is a national reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @JesseSanchezMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Colon in good shape, hoping for long season in Majors

After big league debut last year, infielder suited for several positions with Royals

Colon in good shape, hoping for long season in Majors

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- It didn't take long for Royals infielder Christian Colon to realize that in order for him to become a better all-around baseball player, he'd have to become a much better racquetball player.

"I learned to move around a little bit, and it helped with that," Colon said. "I worked out all winter, twice a day. It was an all-day thing, and it wasn't the easiest, especially in California, with all the traffic to and from, but my family was very supportive."

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Jesse Sanchez is a national reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @JesseSanchezMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Caribbean Series prepares Pena for upcoming season

After Royals went to World Series last year, backup catcher inspired to work hard

Caribbean Series prepares Pena for upcoming season

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- From the World Series in October to the Caribbean Series earlier in February, it's been a memorable few months for Royals backup catcher Francisco Pena.

He would not have it any other way.

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Jesse Sanchez is a national reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @JesseSanchezMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gordon on track to be ready by Opening Day

Gordon on track to be ready by Opening Day

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Alex Gordon's rehab is going as scheduled, and the Royals' left fielder remains on track to be ready for Opening Day.

Gordon, who had surgery on his right wrist in December, hit off a batting tee Thursday and Friday.

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Jesse Sanchez is a national reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @JesseSanchezMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Royals staying hungry for World Series title

Royals staying hungry for World Series title

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- How devoted are the Royals to getting back to the World Series?

They won't even eat cheeseburgers.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Battle Royal: Relievers vying for roster spots

Yost looking at several candidates, including Collins, Finnegan

Battle Royal: Relievers vying for roster spots

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- There really is only one basic roster battle going on in Royals camp, and that's in the bullpen.

There are two, possibly three, spots up for grabs behind Greg Holland, Wade Davis, Kelvin Herrera, Luke Hochevar, and Jason Frasor, depending on if the club carries seven or eight relievers.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Infante finally feeling healthy in Royals camp

Infante finally feeling healthy in Royals camp

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- After two days of throwing and hitting, Royals second baseman Omar Infante says his right shoulder and elbow feel fine.

"Everything's good," Infante said on Thursday. "I'm trying to take it a little slow, but right now it all feels fine."

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Finnegan among 10 Royals signed to 2015 deals

Finnegan among 10 Royals signed to 2015 deals

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- The Royals agreed to terms on 2015 contracts for left-handers Brandon Finnegan, Brian Flynn and John Lamb, right-handers Aaron Brooks and Michael Mariot, catcher Erik Kratz, infielders Cheslor Cuthbert and Ryan Jackson and outfielders Lane Adams and Jorge Bonifacio.

The Royals still have eight unsigned players, including likely Opening Day starter Yordano Ventura, as well as Rule 5 Draft right-hander Jandel Gustave, catcher Francisco Pena, infielders Orlando Calixte and Christian Colon, and outfielders Reymond Fuentes, Terrance Gore and Paulo Orlando.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Election to Royals Hall special for Sweeney and his dad

Former All-Star slugger set club record with 144 RBIs in 2000

Election to Royals Hall special for Sweeney and his dad

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Being elected into the Royals Hall of Fame on Wednesday was at least a small bit of light in what has been a dark two months for Mike Sweeney.

Sweeney learned on New Year's Eve that his father, Mike, was diagnosed with esophageal cancer.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Medlen confident in Royals' rehab plan

Right-hander coming off second Tommy John surgery in four years

Medlen confident in Royals' rehab plan

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Right-hander Kris Medlen literally does not know when he will actually have his first bullpen session since his Tommy John surgery last year.

The Royals know -- they have his whole rehab schedule mapped out.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

'Bachelor' Juan Pablo visits Royals camp

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'Bachelor' Juan Pablo visits Royals camp

Former star of ABC's "The Bachelor" Juan Pablo Galavis, known to most as, simply, Juan Pablo, is something of an honorary Major Leaguer. He's thrown out a (not great) first pitch before a Marlins game:

And he's good friends with several current players, even serving as a representative of the Venezuelan Baseball Hall of Fame. Seriously.

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Cuthbert adjusting to playing second base

Nicaraguan prospect expected to start season at Triple-A

Cuthbert adjusting to playing second base

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Cheslor Cuthbert, a Nicaraguan who was signed in 2009 as a 16-year-old for $1.35 million, continues to climb his way through the Royals' system.

Cuthbert, now 22, was promoted to Triple-A Omaha toward the end of last season. In 25 games there he hit .264/.330/.385, and Omaha is where he'll start this season.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gordon swings for first time since surgery without issue

Outfielder reports no discomfort in right wrist the day after playing long toss

Gordon swings for first time since surgery without issue

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- After playing long toss on Monday -- Alex Gordon's first attempt at throwing since surgery on his right wrist in December -- the Royals outfielder says he awoke Tuesday morning with no discomfort.

"The wrist felt fine," Gordon said before Tuesday's workout. "But throwing is the easy part. It's hitting that we'll have to see about."

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Moose vows to bunt more to beat defensive shift

Royals third baseman looking to boost batting average in 2015

Moose vows to bunt more to beat defensive shift

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas remembers the feeling he got when he first came up to bat in last year's season opener at Detroit and saw the Tigers' infield suddenly launch into a shift.

"Oh, God," Moustakas said, shaking his head. "I was really confused. I mean, they didn't shift me all spring."

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Durable Escobar plans on playing every game

After starting 162 contests last season, Royals' shortstop looks to keep going

Durable Escobar plans on playing every game

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Shortstop Alcides Escobar arrived in camp on Tuesday, ready to do what he always does -- play nonstop until the season is over.

Escobar played in all 162 games last season, played in all 15 postseason games, went to Japan for the All-Star Series right after that, and then played three weeks of winter ball.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Morales gets jump on spring in Royals camp

Morales gets jump on spring in Royals camp

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Designated hitter Kendrys Morales, whom the Royals signed in the offseason to replace Billy Butler, arrived in camp on Tuesday, eager to get his timing down.

Morales missed Spring Training last year and he didn't sign with Minnesota until June. Morales never got on track, hitting just .218 with eight homers in 2014.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Guthrie wants more taste of big games

Guthrie wants more taste of big games

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- As Royals right-hander Jeremy Guthrie looks back at the wild and eventful 2014 season, he recalls one regular-season game in particular that was virtually pushed aside in people's minds because of the terrific October run the team went on.

That game was on Sept. 26 in Chicago, the night the Royals clinched their first playoff berth since 1985 with a 3-1 win over the White Sox in which Guthrie tossed seven shutout innings.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Starling sharpening offensive, mental parts of game

Royals' 1st-round pick in 2011 Draft worked with Brett over offseason

Starling sharpening offensive, mental parts of game

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- The Royals haven't given up on outfielder Bubba Starling, the fifth overall pick of the 2011 Draft.

"He's an athletic guy who could play in the big leagues right now defensively," Royals vice president/assistant general manager J.J. Picollo said. "Obviously there are some hurdles yet for him at the plate."

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Jeremy Guthrie parodies MJ's retirement presser

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Jeremy Guthrie parodies MJ's retirement presser

Royals pitcher Jeremy Guthrie has announced that he's retiring from collecting sneakers. In a press conference parodying Michael Jordan's first retirement from basketball (the one where he announced he'd play professional baseball), Guthrie donned his Sunday best and held a press conference to, um, hang 'em up, so to speak.

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