Manager Ned Yost said he plans to play Adalberto Mondesi, 22, a couple of days a week at shortstop. Escobar, 31, has been the Royals’ everyday shortstop since 2011 after being acquired from the Milwaukee Brewers as part of the Zack Greinke trade.
“Esky’s been our shortstop for a long time,” Yost said Tuesday. “It’s a pretty big change, seeing somebody different at short, but it’s exciting, too, because now you’re starting to give other younger players opportunities to see what they can do.”
Escobar was an American League All-Star starter and Glove Glove winner in 2015, the year the Royals won the World Series.
With the Royals in last place with a 22-50 record entering the game Tuesday night against the Texas Rangers, they are looking to the future.
“It’s a good chance to experiment right now,” Yost said. “There’s nothing that is going to make or break us. You can start looking at things a little bit differently and start experimenting with some things.”
He said he talked to Escobar about his consecutive-game streak, which is the longest active streak in the majors, ending.
“We talked about the streak,” Yost said. “There will be times he’ll sit. But it’s time to look at Mondi at little bit and move Esky around.”
He said he could play Escobar at third, second or center field.
“He was excited about the opportunity,” Yost said. “He’s at a point in his career where it will increase value if he can play multiple positions.”
Escobar played five games in the outfield in 2010 with the Brewers, including one start. He has played 1,355 games at shortstop.
The Royals have already started their youth movement by trading closer Kelvin Herrera to the Washington Nationals on Monday for three prospects and outfielder Jon Jay to the Arizona Diamondbacks on June 6 for two minor league pitchers.