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Moylan returns from Classic with mixed feelings

Reliever happy to be in camp, wishes Australia had advanced
MLB.com @FlannyMLB

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Royals right-hander Peter Moylan was back in camp on Sunday with mixed feelings.

Moylan, 38, came home after Australia was eliminated in the World Baseball Classic by Cuba, 4-3, on Thursday. Moylan threw two scoreless innings in that game.

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Royals right-hander Peter Moylan was back in camp on Sunday with mixed feelings.

Moylan, 38, came home after Australia was eliminated in the World Baseball Classic by Cuba, 4-3, on Thursday. Moylan threw two scoreless innings in that game.

Moylan hoped Australia could advance, but he's glad to be back in camp trying to win a job in the Royals' bullpen.

"It was an awesome experience," Moylan said. "Australia as a unit and a team proved to the world we're improving. To lose 4-1 to Japan and 4-3 to Cuba -- thought we outplayed Cuba. We beat China, so we don't have to qualify for the next [Classic]. By then, in 2021, I'll be like 50 years old so that'll be fun.

"One part of me is glad to be back in camp. But at the same time, Australia has never made it to the second round, so that would have been really nice. Good year to do it."

Video: Australian reliever Moylan optimistic to contribute

Moylan will now try to prove to the Royals' coaching staff and front office he merits a spot in the bullpen, which may have only one -- possibly two -- spots available.

"That's the plan, to continue to pitch well which I did [in the offseason] and the first couple of games here, and in the [Classic]," Moylan said. "Just continue to get guys out."

Moylan believes the Royals should know his capabilities -- he posted a 3.43 ERA in 50 games in 2016. But Moylan is on a Minor League deal, and may still have an upward climb to a roster spot.

As for the World Baseball Classic, Moylan is in favor of the tournament continuing in the future.

"I don't have a vote," Moylan said. "But I think the format works and it's exciting. It's like college football [playoffs]. The intensity is there. It's something different to put on a jersey that has your country's name on it."

Jeffrey Flanagan has covered the Royals since 1991, and for MLB.com since 2015. Follow him on Twitter @FlannyMLB.

Kansas City Royals, Peter Moylan