Giavotella to start season at Triple-A

Giavotella to start season at Triple-A

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- If Omar Infante isn't ready to start the season with the Royals, it won't be Johnny Giavotella in his place at second base.

Giavotella was optioned to Triple-A Omaha just before Tuesday night's game against the Mariners.

That leaves Danny Valencia, Pedro Ciriaco and Jason Donald as the possibilities to take over for Infante, who has been battling an aching right elbow. Manager Ned Yost, however, said earlier Tuesday that he's optimistic that Infante will be ready for Opening Day.

Giavotella had a productive Cactus League season, with a .341 average (14-for-41) in 21 games. He had a home run, two triples and three doubles with seven RBIs.

Once considered Kansas City's second baseman of the future, Giavotella's Minor League success did not transition well to the Majors in his callups in 2011, '12 and '13. In those three seasons, he played a total of 113 games and hit just .240.

In six Minor League seasons, Giavotella had a .303 average, 45 homers and 332 RBIs in 634 games. He was a second-round pick in the 2008 First-Year Player Draft.

The move leaves the Royals with 29 active players in camp.

Dick Kaegel is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.