KANSAS CITY -- For the moment, Royals manager Ned Yost is operating with 11 pitchers instead of the preferred 12. And that could change at any moment.
"It just takes one day to throw everything into havoc," Yost said. "You have to keep your bullpen balanced in their workload. And if it gets unbalanced, it creates problems that linger for four or five days. I want to try to avoid that if I can."
For the last two days, Yost had left-hander Danny Duffy available as his seventh bullpen pitcher to face the Rockies but, really, only in an emergency. Duffy will start Saturday night's game against the Orioles so that luxury disappears as of Thursday.
As long as Yost's starting pitchers give him a good six or seven innings, he should be OK.
"I don't need to make a move right now. Will I have to tomorrow? I don't know, we'll see what happens today," Yost said before Wednesday's game.
"I could use up a bunch of pitching. If I don't, then I won't have to make a roster move tomorrow. And our starters have been doing pretty good. We've been keeping our balance in the 'pen pretty good."
A hurry-up call to Triple-A Omaha wouldn't involve much travel for a pitcher because the Storm Chasers are at Memphis and then Nashville over the next eight days. Even if they were on the West Coast, though, no problem.
"We pre-think, pre-plan all this stuff," Yost said. "If something happens, we'll have a guy in tomorrow. I'm not going to need a guy here in 15 minutes. Everything is planned out."
Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. Jackson Alexander is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.