Royals add former infielder Getz to front office
KANSAS CITY -- Former second baseman Chris Getz is taking a new position with the Royals -- he's becoming an assistant in player development in the team's front office.
Getz, 31, was in the Major Leagues for seven years with the White Sox, Royals and, briefly, the Blue Jays. Noted as an outstanding fielder and basestealer, he posted a career average of .250 in 459 games.
After retiring as a player early last season, Getz took the summer off to consider his career options and decided to stay in baseball. He had a discussion with Royals general manager Dayton Moore and assistant general manager J.J. Picollo, and was offered a job in player personnel and development.
"They offered me a position that was ideal and would expose me to the other side of the game, in all areas," Getz said.
"As I'm making the transition from playing, I couldn't think of a better place to go, considering my prior relationships and the baseball minds I'm going to be around, and also because of the character of them. I just felt [Kansas City] was a great place to go."
"He'll get a chance to do a lot of things," Picollo said. "He's a good baseball guy, so I'm glad we got him."
Getz played four years with the Royals after being obtained from the White Sox in a trade prior to the 2010 season. Third baseman-outfielder Mark Teahen was sent to Chicago in exchange for Getz and third baseman Josh Fields. Getz had just finished a promising rookie season for the White Sox.
Troubled at times by injuries, Getz started just 277 games in his four Kansas City seasons. In a total of 332 games for the Royals, he hit .248 with one homer and 79 RBIs, but he had a .305 on-base percentage and his speed netted 61 stolen bases.
In Spring Training 2013, Getz won the second-base job over Johnny Giavotella but later lost playing time to Elliot Johnson, Miguel Tejada and Emilio Bonifacio.
Getz finished 2013 with a career-low average of .220 but hit his first home run as a Royal after 829 at-bats without one. Last December, the Royals did not offer Getz a contract and, as a free agent, he signed with Toronto. He started the season in Triple-A, was called up by the Blue Jays and then was sent down after playing in just 10 games. At that point, last May 16, Getz retired as a player rather than return to Buffalo.
After joining the Royals, Getz spent a week as a coach with their team in the Arizona Fall League and also spent two weeks at the MLB Scout school in Phoenix.
"It's always interesting to learn new and different things in the game," Getz said. "Just to get a scouting perspective, I figured, would be valuable in whatever avenue I take."
His wife, Nicky, gained a measure of fame in 2013 when she and Kim DeJesus, wife of former Royals outfielder David DeJesus, were featured on CBS' "The Amazing Race." Chris and Nicky became parents of their first child, Luke, on June 24. Is his son right-handed or left-handed?
"It's tough to tell, he seems to be grabbing at everything with both hands," Getz said happily.
The Getz family will be moving to the Kansas City area from Grosse Pointe, Mich., in January.