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Maxwell starts with Royals light in outfield

KANSAS CITY -- The strong and deep Royals outfield corps was suddenly depleted when, within two days, Lorenzo Cain went on the disabled list and Jarrod Dyson took bereavement leave.

That brought backup Justin Maxwell, who shared a backup role with Dyson, into the starting lineup. Manager Ned Yost had to decide whether Maxwell or right fielder Nori Aoki would take Cain's spot in center field.

"I don't think you gain an advantage in center field with either one, and Nori been consistently playing right, so we'll leave him planted there and Maxie can handle center fine," Yost said.

Maxwell was obtained from Houston last July 31 for pitcher Kyle Smith and played 35 games in the second half for Kansas City with a .268 average and five homers.

"All Maxie needs is a chance. We feel like since we got him in the trade last year, he's continuing to develop upward where he's still got a bunch of ceiling left in his game," Yost said. "It's hard to be productive when you're playing once a week so this is an opportunity for Maxie to get two or three games in a row playing."

Cain is on the disabled list with a left groin strain.

"All the MRI stuff came back OK today for Cain, and we're hoping it's just going to be a 15-day deal and over quick," Yost said.

Meantime, Jimmy Paredes is up from Omaha and Dyson is due back on Monday.

Dick Kaegel is a reporter for
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