Royals aren't tabbing Mondesi as full-time SS

Yost said Escobar's starting streak isn't factor in club's decision

June 18th, 2018

KANSAS CITY -- Royals manager Ned Yost said on Monday that he is not making any commitments to starting infielder , presumably a big part of the team's future, at shortstop anytime soon.

Mondesi, who was recalled from Triple-A Omaha on Sunday, logged an RBI double for his first hit of the season in the series opener against the Rangers on Monday night at Kauffman Stadium.

Yost was asked before the game if he had plans to use Mondesi at shortstop over a struggling .

"[Mondesi] is playing second base tonight," Yost said. "That's as far as I'm going to go."

Escobar came into Monday's game hitting .206 with a .253 on-base percentage. He also was in the midst of a 2-for-41 stretch.

"Who isn't in a slump right now?" Yost asked, pointing to the team's .183 average in June. "I'm not going to single anyone out."

Yost also was asked if Escobar continues to play because he has the longest active starting streak in the Major Leagues, a streak that reached 405 games on Monday.

"No," Yost said.

Merrifield back quickly

Whit Merrifield was back in the lineup on Monday despite sustaining a deep bruise after hitting a foul ball off his left knee on Sunday. Merrifield writhed in pain before being removed from the game, but X-rays showed no fracture.

Merrifield said on Monday that the knee felt much better when he woke up Monday morning, enough that he could DH.

"He probably could have stayed in the game [Sunday] if we'd had another five minutes (to recover)," Yost said.

Keller to be skipped

Yost also said he will alter his rotation because of the upcoming off-day on Thursday. Right-hander , who had been scheduled to start on Saturday in Houston, will now pitch on June 26 in Milwaukee.

And Yost said the Royals will start Danny Duffy, and against the Astros this weekend at Minute Maid Park.

"[Keller] is the No. 5 guy and we just don't want our veterans going long stretches without throwing," Yost said, referring to the upcoming off-days.

Duda to rehab

Royals first baseman , on the disabled list because of right foot plantar fasciitis, left on Sunday to start a rehab assignment with Omaha. He was expected to be in the Storm Chasers' lineup on Monday night.