Royals shuffle top of lineup

Royals shuffle top of lineup

DETROIT -- When Alberto Callaspo was moved out of the No. 3 slot in the Royals' lineup, Billy Butler moved in. He'd been batting fourth, but third was his regular spot last season and his average was .306 there.

But manager Trey Hillman is still reluctant to tinker with his No. 1 and 2 hitters, David DeJesus and Scott Podsednik. That's even though Podsednik had five steals in the first seven games and is speedier than DeJesus.

"Especially with what Pod has done, it'd seem to make more sense to put Pod [No.] 1 and David [No.] 2," Hillman said. "It's something that I've thought about ever since we signed Pod."

But DeJesus feels more comfortable in his customary leadoff spot, and batting second would be more difficult for him mentally in Hillman's view. The manager recalled telling DeJesus in Spring Training: "As soon as I put you [No.] 2, you're going to read about it because they're definitely going to write about it. And that's going to create anxiety -- you're going to start believing what you're reading."

For the record, DeJesus has been a .297 hitter as a leadoff man (613 games) but just .245 in the second slot (88 games).