Mondesi's challenge: To dive or not to dive?

Duffy, Gallagher, Fillmyer join Royals; looking at September callups

September 1st, 2019

KANSAS CITY – The Royals had a busy morning Sunday, activating catcher (left oblique strain), left-hander (left hamstring strain) and shortstop (left shoulder subluxation) from the injured list, while also recalling right-hander .

Duffy started Sunday afternoon’s game against the Orioles at Kauffman Stadium, throwing 6 1/3 innings and giving up four runs (three earned) on seven hits, with one walk and three strikeouts in the Royals’ 6-4 comeback win.

Mondesi went 4-for-5 -- all singles -- in his return, with three stolen bases. He injured his shoulder in mid-July diving for a foul popup, and is under orders not to dive head first into any bases, or to attempt to dive for balls in the field.

Mondesi said before Sunday’s game that that will be difficult.

“I try to play my game and play hard,” Mondesi said, shrugging his shoulders. “We’ll see.”

Royals manager Ned Yost said prior to the game on Sunday that he understands it is tough to tell a player to rein in his effort, and there will be no repercussions if Mondesi dives head first.

“What do you want me to do? Take off my belt and spank him?” Yost said.

The Royals may make some additional September callups other than Fillmyer on Tuesday, quite possibly a pitcher such as left-hander , who is on the 40-man roster.

The Royals also are expected to add Minor League first baseman/outfielder Ryan McBroom to the 40-man roster on Tuesday and call him up. McBroom was acquired Saturday night from the Yankees in exchange for international pool money.

Here’s a look who already has been called up and who else could be:

Arrival: Second baseman . After a rough patch in June and July, Lopez, who was called up from Omaha in May, has shown he is growing accustomed to the pitching at the Major League level. Since Aug. 3, Lopez is hitting .275 with one home run, five doubles and 10 RBIs. He’s also been well above-average defensively, showing perhaps the most accurate arm on the team either at shortstop or second base.

Breakout: Outfielder Nick Heath: The Royals already liked Heath before this season but he proved in stops at Double-A Northwest Arkansas and Triple-A Omaha that he’s not just a speedy defender. Heath, who won’t get called up because of a wrist injury, hit .255 with 14 doubles, eight triples and eight home runs combined in the Minors this season. He also stole an organization-high 60 bases. He’s Rule 5 Draft eligible and is a candidate to be protected on the 40-man roster.

Something to prove: Fillmyer and outfielder . Fillmyer made 13 starts for the Royals in 2018 and looked impressive at times, going 4-2 with a 4.26 ERA. But after a rough start with the Royals earlier this season (9.00 ERA in four outings) and a tough year at Omaha (5.11 ERA), Fillmyer needs to make a statement this September. Bonifacio, after hitting 17 home runs for the Royals in 2017, hasn’t been the same player since. He hit .223 at Omaha this season with 20 home runs and 62 RBIs, and there is some question as to whether he gets called up this week.

Name to watch: McBroom: He hit .315 with 26 home runs and a .976 OPS at the Yankees’ Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre affiliate this season and the Royals will take a good look at him this month.