KANSAS CITY -- Jose Guillen's return to the Royals' lineup wasn't an earth-moving event, but at least he came out of it OK if a bit achy.
"I feel good, a little sore," he said Sunday. "It's a little different when you're practicing and playing the game."
After missing 15 days with a right hip flexor tear, Guillen was in right field on Saturday night against Detroit. He went to the plate three times with a walk and two groundouts and made a routine catch and chased down a hit or two.
Despite the layoff, Guillen is confident his swing is OK.
"I'm not worried about my timing, it's there," he said. "I want to start contributing and winning some games."
Guillen was surprised that he was the designated hitter on Sunday and not back in right field.
"As far as I know, he's OK. I'm DHing him today, but that wasn't because of any conversation," manager Trey Hillman said. "It's a day game after a night game and I really felt like Billy [Butler] needs a day off similar to the way I gave Mike [Aviles] a day off last night, hoping that would recharge his batteries a little bit."
Butler, just 1-for-10 in his last three games, was on the bench and Mike Jacobs went from DH to first base. Aviles, who sat Saturday night after a 2-for-22 swoon in six games, was back at shortstop.
Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.