KANSAS CITY, MO — The Kansas City Royals announced today that the club has signed four additional players to minor league contracts for the 2013 season. The club plans to announce Major League Spring Training invitations at a later date.
Right-handed pitcher Anthony Ortega, 27, is currently pitching for Tiburones de La Guaira in the Venezuelan Winter League, recording a 1-1 record with a 3.00 ERA in 16 relief appearances. The 6-footer from Miranda, Venezuela, who made three starts for the Angels in 2009, is 26-31 with a 4.41 ERA in 118 career minor league games, including 82 starts. Ortega did not pitch during the 2012 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery on his right elbow.
34-year-old right-handed pitcher Brian Sanches returns to the Royals organization after nearly 10 with other clubs. Sanches was the Royals’ second-round selection in 1999 out of Lamar University. He pitched in the Kansas City system until August 26, 2003 when he was traded to San Diego for outfielder Rondell White. Sanches was then sent to Philadelphia in a trade on April 1, 2004. The 6-foot-1 Nederland, Texas native has made 195 career appearances, all but two in relief, in the Majors with the Phillies (2006-07, 2012), Nationals (2008) and Marlins (2009-11), recording a 13-7 record with a 3.75 ERA in 235.0 innings.
Left-handed pitcher Atahualpa Severino, 28, posted a 3-0 record with three saves and a 2.81 ERA in 46 relief stints for Syracuse, Washington’s Triple-A affiliate, in 2012. Born in Cotui, Dominican Republic, Severino saw his only Major League action in 2011 with the Nationals, recording a 1-0 record with a 3.86 ERA in six games.
Infielder Brandon Wood, 27, spent 2012 at Triple-A Colorado Springs in the Rockies organization, batting .259 with 10 home runs and 64 RBI on 119 games. The former top prospect of the Los Angeles Angels has played in 272 Major League contests since his debut with the Angels as a 22-year-old in 2007. He is a career .186 hitter with 18 home runs for the Angels (2007-11) and Pirates (2011). The 2003 first-round selection (23rd overall), who has connected for at least 20 home runs in five minor league seasons including a California League-record 43 in 2005, came up as a shortstop and third baseman, but has since appeared at first base and in the outfield.