KANSAS CITY – Royals All-Star catcher Salvador Perez’s lingering eye issue finally landed him on the 10-day injured list on Friday. The move is retroactive to Tuesday, and the Royals are hoping his condition will improve enough that he can return for the series in Chicago against the White Sox starting Aug. 28.
Left-hander Randy Rosario was reinstated from the injured list [arm soreness] and will replace Perez on the 28-man roster.
Perez began experiencing blurred vision in his left eye last Sunday in Minnesota and was a late scratch to the lineup. Perez was examined by an eye doctor in Minneapolis prior to Monday’s game at Target Field and it was revealed that he had a fluid-filled particle in his left eye that eventually will dissolve on its own.
Perez managed to start Monday’s game but he was removed in the sixth inning.
Perez then was examined again by an eye doctor in Kansas City on Tuesday and the original diagnosis was confirmed. He has not played since Monday.
The Royals, though, have been carrying three catchers this week in hopes Perez’s eye would heal at any moment. They simply couldn’t keep holding that roster spot any more.
Cam Gallagher likely will see most of the duty behind the plate in Perez’s absence, with Meibrys Viloria backing Gallagher up.
“Cam is an excellent receiver,” Royals manager Mike Matheny said. “He handles the games well. And as you’ve seen, he has given us some really good at-bats as well.
“It’s tough to take someone like Salvy out of the lineup. He’s our best hitter right now. But we need other guys to step up right now.”
Junis getting close
Matheny said right-hander Jakob Junis, on the IL because of back spasms, was scheduled to have a “pretty intense” bullpen session on Friday with at least two up-and-downs at the team’s alternate site.
Junis’ IL stint was retroactive to Aug. 13.
Handling trade talk
It is that time of the year when trade rumors will swirl leading into this season’s Aug. 31 Trade Deadline. Matheny, on occasion, said he has found it necessary to remind players involved in trade rumors to stay focused.
“Usually I get a little bit of a wind that a player is distracted,” Matheny said. “My typical response to those guys is that hey, it’s a compliment, that you’re wanted in the game. But then it’s ‘Leave it there, let’s go play the game. That’s your responsibility.’”
There certainly will be trade talk surrounding the Royals with expiring contracts such as Ian Kennedy, Greg Holland and Trevor Rosenthal.
“It’s there and you know it going into this week,” Matheny said. “It’s excitement for fans, like the Hot Stove, and thinking about what their team might look like.
“Most people love -- I personally don’t -- playing junior GM. That’s why fantasy baseball took off like it did, you know, to be the guy pulling the strings and putting something together. That’s excitement for the game and you have to embrace that from a fan perspective. But internally, we try to downplay that as much as we can.”