Source: Ventura trade talks 'utter nonsense'

June 8th, 2016

BALTIMORE -- A source close to the situation called a Yahoo! Sports report that the Royals had offered up right-hander Yordano Ventura in trade talks within the past month "complete and utter nonsense."

Ventura, who was ejected twice last season and suspended once, is at the forefront again after his involvement in a brawl Tuesday night with the Orioles. After being plunked in the back with a fastball in the fifth inning, Manny Machado charged the mound and threw a punch at Ventura, prompting both benches and bullpens to empty.

Both players were ejected.

But the Royals are not, according to a source, ready to deal the talented but enigmatic Ventura, whose ERA has risen to 5.32 this season. Ventura is in the midst of a five-year, $23 million deal, and the club has control of him through 2021.

Royals general manager Dayton Moore would not discuss any potential trade talks.

"It's highly inappropriate and reckless to discuss any specific trade talks about players with the media," Moore told by phone. "Any discussions along those lines will remain with our baseball operations people. I will not discuss it."

Moore did, however, offer his opinion on the events of Tuesday night, and Ventura's role in the benches-clearing incident.

"We don't condone it," Moore said. "We don't want to see anyone get hurt. But it happens in baseball and has since the beginning.

"You teach your pitchers to be able to command both sides of the plate with their fastball. Obviously we don't want to see what happened last night, and we don't want to see anyone get hurt.

"I just know from what I saw that there is enough blame to go around. It's an unfortunate part of the game. But it's essential to be able to command your fastball on both sides of the plate."

Moore also noted that, as was the case Tuesday, Royals hitters routinely get backed off the plate.

"We get pitched inside more than anyone else," Moore said. "Lorenzo Cain gets pitched inside all the time, so does Eric Hosmer and Alex Gordon and Salvador Perez. Paulo Orlando got hit in the same spot twice in about three days."

Last season, only Tampa Bay (84) got hit by pitches more than Kansas City (77) in the American League. This season, the Royals (15) are near the middle of the pack in hit by pitches.

Still, Moore seemed somewhat resigned to the fact that Ventura could face disciplinary action from Major League Baseball.

"The Commissioner's Office does a tremendous job of handling these situations fairly with proper punishment," Moore said. "And whatever is decided in this case, we will accept."