KANSAS CITY -- Manager Ned Yost, with his young bullpen hitting a bit of a speed bump lately, decided a change was in order after watching Kanekoa Texeira in Wednesday night's game against the Indians. So Louis Coleman got the call, and Texeira was sent to Triple-A Omaha.
"We've been struggling a little bit commanding the ball in the 'pen -- throwing strikes, coming in and getting inherited runners out," Yost said. "And he's been doing a good job, so we look at it as a bit of an upgrade."
Texeira, in six games for the Royals, posted a 2.84 ERA in 6 1/3 innings. He gave up just two runs, but also allowed 13 hits and three walks. Against the Indians on Wednesday night, Texeira worked two innings and allowed five hits and one run, working out of a ninth-inning bases-loaded situation.
"He gave up a lot of hits and he was off a little bit," Yost said. "He commanded the ball really good in Spring Training, kept it down. He's a little more erratic now."
But Texeira certainly could be back and, in fact, it wouldn't be a surprise if the bullpen becomes something of a rotating operation if the kids skid and need some Minor League realignment. There's ample talent at Omaha and Double-A Northwest Arkansas.
"The timing was good to send Texeira down, get him sharp and then be available if we need him. And we will because it's important that our bullpen stays sharp and productive," Yost said. "So if a guy gets off a little bit, we've got the luxury now of sending him down and bringing somebody up that is sharp."
Texeira was in his second big league season. Last season, as a rookie, he was 1-0 with a 4.64 ERA in 27 relief appearances after being claimed off waivers from the Mariners.