Minor Leaguer Gutierrez among five re-signed by KC

Minor Leaguer Gutierrez among five re-signed by KC

KANSAS CITY -- Right-hander Juan Gutierrez, who converted 14 straight save opportunities for Arizona in 2010 and then had shoulder problems, showed enough in his Minor League comeback last season to get another shot with Kansas City.

Gutierrez was among five players re-signed to Minor League contracts, the Royals announced on Thursday. The others were catcher Max Ramirez, first baseman Matt Fields, outfielder Nick Van Stratten and pitcher Devon Lowery.

Pitching for three teams this year, Gutierrez had a 10.45 ERA in 19 games. He pitched just 20 2/3 innings, with 18 strikeouts and six walks. Ramirez hit .300 and banged 17 homers with 77 RBIs for Triple-A Omaha. Both were signed as free agents last winter.

Fields, in 67 games for Single-A Wilmington, had 17 homers and 41 RBIs with a .281 average. Van Stratten hit .312 combined for Wilmington and Double-A Northwest Arkansas. Lowery, who pitched in five games for Kansas City in 2008, is a player-coach in the Minors.