SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Left-handed reliever George Sherrill and right-handed slugger Xavier Nady might be in the Royals' future after all.
Both players, who had been released on Monday, were re-signed to Minor League contracts on Wednesday. The move saved the Royals a $100,000 "retention bonus" on each player, based on a new rule in the latest Basic Agreement. They could've signed elsewhere, but both opted to return to the Royals.
Sherrill, 35, made his biggest mark as an All-Star closer with the Orioles, and also has pitched for the Mariners, Dodgers and Braves. He underwent Tommy John surgery last May 4 and has been throwing with Royals starters Felipe Paulino and Danny Duffy, who underwent that procedure also last year.
"It's coming along pretty good. It's a little erratic at times, but I've been told that's what to expect. It seems to be bouncing back pretty well," Sherrill said. "I'd say I'm somewhere about 80 or 85 percent, so I think I'm staying back here [in Arizona] a little bit and go from there, I guess. I've got one more live BP tomorrow, then throw in some extended spring training games and take it from there."
Sherrill has made 442 relief appearances in the Majors with 56 saves, a 19-17 record and a 3.77 ERA.
"He's a funky lefty, and we need one," manager Ned Yost said. "I'm anxious for him to get back, but I'm not to the point where I want to push him or anything like that."
Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.