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Royals option Merrifield, re-assign Maness

Bench spot goes to Colon as Opening Day nears
MLB.com

Two days before they open their 2017 season in Minnesota, the Royals optioned utility player Whit Merrifield to Triple-A Omaha and sent right-hander Seth Maness to Minor League camp, whittling down their number of players in Major League camp to 26.

That means Christian Colon is set to make Kansas City's Opening Day roster as a utility infielder. Colon had been competing with Merrifield, 28, for a bench spot on the Royals' 25-man roster after Raul Mondesi earned the starting second-base job.

Two days before they open their 2017 season in Minnesota, the Royals optioned utility player Whit Merrifield to Triple-A Omaha and sent right-hander Seth Maness to Minor League camp, whittling down their number of players in Major League camp to 26.

That means Christian Colon is set to make Kansas City's Opening Day roster as a utility infielder. Colon had been competing with Merrifield, 28, for a bench spot on the Royals' 25-man roster after Raul Mondesi earned the starting second-base job.

Merrifield, who has options, batted 283 with 22 doubles, three triples, two homers and 29 RBIs over 81 games in 2016.

Video: KC@CHC: Colon drives in two with a broken-bat single

Veteran right-hander Peter Moylan, the 26th player still in camp, is not on the team's 40-man roster.

Colon, who is out of options, is entering his fourth Major League season with the Royals. The 27-year-old hit .231 with one home run and 13 RBIs in 54 games last season. In 2015, he knocked the go-ahead hit in the 12th inning of the Royals' World Series-clinching Game 5 against the Mets.

David Adler is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @_dadler.

Kansas City Royals, Christian Colon, Whit Merrifield