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Hayes' strong defense giving Yost options

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KANSAS CITY -- Salvador Perez was back in the Royals' lineup on Sunday, catching James Shields, but backup Brett Hayes was impressive as he guided Danny Duffy to victory on Saturday night.

"He did a phenomenal job with Duffy -- calling the game, blocking pitches. His receiving is really good," manager Ned Yost said. "And I'm just waiting for him to get his first hit. I had a feeling he was going to get a homer for some reason all day long. I said, 'Hayes is going deep tonight.'"

Hayes is 0-for-16 in his 10 games so far, but it's defense that makes him valuable.

"The thing that we've got going for us this year is when we give Salvy a day off, I'm comfortable with the defense we have back there," Yost said. "Last year, we'd get the lead in the seventh or eighth inning, I had to put Salvy in games [for defense]. I don't have to do it this year."

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

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