CHICAGO — Outfielder Alex Rios joined the Royals in Chicago on Friday morning, but will not be activated from the disabled list until Saturday, manager Ned Yost said.
Rios, recovering from a fractured left hand suffered in April, spent the last four days with Triple A Omaha rehabbing the injury. He went 3 for 17 with a home run and a double, playing twice as the designated hitter and twice in his customary right field.
"I think the purpose was to check if my hand was doing good and if I could swing," Rios said, "and I could. I feel good."
Rios flew in from Omaha on Friday morning at 7 a.m. and Yost said Friday was a day to rest him before activating him Saturday.
The club will have to make a corresponding move to open a roster spot, either optioning Paulo Orlando or designating Jarrod Dyson for assignment. Sending Orlando down seems like the likely move, since Dyson may not clear waivers, meaning Kansas City would lose him.
Rios said there was still some pain when he swung, but it was "manageable."
"On some occasions, there’s going to be discomfort, but I think that’s an issue I’m going to have to deal with," Rios said. "Overall, I was able to swing, I would say, at 100 percent. I think we achieved our goal."
Rios will be a welcome addition to the struggling Kansas City lineup, which has scored five total runs during the Royals’ current four-game losing streak. Orlando and Dyson have split time in right field during Rios’ absence, combining for one home run and nine RBIs in 55 total games.
In his seven games prior to absorbing J.R. Graham’s fastball on April 13 in Minnesota, Rios had one home run and eight RBIs. He said he was excited to return to the lineup.
"You come here to compete," Rios said. "You want to play. You want to be out there playing and enjoying the things that the team is doing. It is exciting and I’m looking forward to it."