Notes: Teahen a work in progress

Notes: Teahen a work in progress in outfield

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Mark Teahen is right on about right field.

Teahen is making the switch from third base to right and learning the intricacies of playing the outfield.

"I don't know if I'm better than two weeks ago, but every day I'm getting more comfortable," Teahen said Tuesday. "It is a work in progress. You learn from experience. I'm learning.

"I feel comfortable with the way it has gone so far. I feel like I'm making good strides. It shouldn't be any problem come Opening Day. Obviously, many things will come up throughout the season, but with the experiences I've already gone through and the different stuff I work on, I should be able to deal on the fly."

Teahen acknowledged Orlando Cabrera's double in the fourth inning fooled him in the Royals' 13-7 loss to the Angels.

"I feel like I could have caught it," Teahen said. "It was a ball that was tailing away. Usually, it doesn't carry that far. The wind was blowing a little more today. It is just stuff I need to learn. Cabrera usually doesn't have a lot of pop that way, and I didn't think he got as much of it as he did. I probably could have taken a more direct route and caught it. Live and learn."

Teahen said the toughest thing about playing the outfield is "just reading it off the bat."

"It is still hard to tell sometimes if a ball is hit hard or not," Teahen said. "I've been told not to think too much. I think I've got good baseball instincts. [Manager Buddy Bell] has said that when you're out there, just let your instincts take over. The more I practice things, those things will become more instinctive."

Teahen still ices his right shoulder, which required surgery last September.

"I wish I could say it is 100 percent," he said. "Some days, I feel like it is close to that. Some days, it is just tired. For the most part, I can make a competitive throw."

First cuts: Right-hander Luke Hochevar, the first overall pick in the 2006 First-Year Player Draft, was optioned to Double-A Wichita on Tuesday as the Royals made their initial cuts, sending 15 players to the Minors.

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The Royals also optioned outfielder Mitch Maier, a 2003 first-round draft pick, to Triple-A Omaha; left-hander Danny Christensen to Wichita and right-hander Carlos Rosa to Class A Wilmington.

They reassigned 11 others to Minor League camp: pitchers Dewon Brazelton, Billy Buckner, Wayne Franklin, Roberto Giron, Tyler Lumsden and Matt Wright; catchers Damaso Espino, Jared Price and Max St. Pierre and infielders Graham Koonce and Richard Lewis.

Hochevar, Buckner, Lumsden and Rosa are all considered topflight prospects for future rotations.

"There were no real surprises," Bell said. "We wanted to get our young guys down there and get their pitch counts up. We love what the young kids did. Everything went well for them. There is no timetable for them. We just hope they progress as quickly as possible."

Hochevar could be in Kansas City before the season ends.

"We hope everything works out pitching-wise, so we don't have to see him," Bell said. "We want to be careful with all those guys so we don't rush the issue. They are a nice group to look at and know they are down there for the future."

Injury updates: Joe Nelson is scheduled to have surgery on Wednesday in Kansas City. Nelson said he will have his labrum flap shaved and could be allowed to soft toss in six to eight weeks. He is not ruling out pitching before the season ends. ... Scott Elarton, who had shoulder surgery last Aug. 1, threw batting practice for the first time in Spring Training. ... Outfielder Shane Costa has been sidelined with a back strain.

Mechanically awry: Todd Wellemeyer gave up five runs on six hits and a walk in 2 2/3 innings in a start against the Angels.

"Mechanics-wise, I was way out of whack," Wellemeyer said. "My landing was off. I was coming open a little too early. My head was drifting. My upper body was drifting. You name it, it was off. Mechanically, it didn't feel good and that is going to happen in Spring Training.

"It was a bad day on the range. I didn't like anything I was doing out there. I was keeping the ball down. I've got to work on some stuff. I know what I need to focus on for my next bullpen and that's what we'll do.

"My arm felt good, though. When I got behind, most of the hits were infield hits -- ground balls found a hole. You can't do anything about that, but you need to try to get ahead of the next guy and I didn't do that in the third inning. I left the ball up and they drove it, which is what they should do."

Perez performs: Odalis Perez threw four shutout innings in a game against Royals Minor Leaguers. He walked none, struck out five and gave up four hits.

"He looked fine," Bell said. "His velocity was up a little bit and his command was good. That's the main thing with him, command, more than anything. He was a lot better today."

Hot corner: Alex Gordon took a Vladimir Guerrero scorcher on a bad high-hop single off the collarbone in the third inning and later fouled a ball off his foot.

"Just a couple of bruises, that's all," Gordon said.

Gordon played third for the first time since Friday, when he jammed his right shoulder diving for a ball.

"It didn't bother me," Gordon said. "We're just icing it as a precaution."

On deck: Zack Greinke will start on Wednesday in a 3:05 p.m. CT game against the Rockies at Surprise Stadium. Rodrigo Lopez is scheduled to start for the Rockies.

Alan Eskew is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.