NEW YORK -- Wanted: a long man for the Royals' bullpen. Interested applicants should see manager Ned Yost.
"I don't have one," Yost said on Monday at Yankee Stadium. "It's a combination of five guys I don't want to wear out down in the bullpen."
When the season began, Yost had a long reliever in Everett Teaford. But Teaford was needed to make a spot start, so Nate Adcock was called up from Triple-A Omaha for that role. Then Luis Mendoza was replaced in the rotation by Felipe Paulino and Mendoza became a second long man. A few days later, Vin Mazzaro was recalled and there were briefly three pitchers available as long men.
Without reciting all the injuries, options and recalls that followed, to make the long man story short, suffice it to say there are none left in that bullpen role. Yost plans to remedy that very shortly.
"There are too many different scenarios going on right now," Yost said. "We've got to decide on one and go with it."
Yost needs a long man to jump into a game in case a starter is knocked out or is injured early in an outing.
"That's the bottom line," he said.