Yost is happy Royals will be playing in something other than 90-degree heat tonight
SURPRISE, Ariz. — With only two more spring training games left in Arizona — including tonight’s game on FOX Sports Kansas City — manager Ned Yost is happy his Royals play under the lights tonight, calling it a different atmosphere from the 90-degree day games here.
"I don’t manage spring training games for spring training," he says. "I manage for March 31" — as in Opening Day at Detroit.
Yost’s plan going forward is to play his regulars maybe half the game tonight, then four innings in the Cactus League finale Wednesday. Then he’ll have his starters play over the weekend in Milwaukee to get used to playing in a big-league stadium again.
Tonight’s lineup vs. Seattle:
Norichika Aoki, RF
Alcides Escobar, SS
Eric Hosmer, 1B
Billy Butler, DH
Alex Gordon, LF
Salvador Perez, C
Mike Moustakas, 3B
Lorenzo Cain, CF
Pedro Ciriaco, 2B
Bruce Chen, P (vs. Felix Hernandez)
— Omar Infante played in a minor-league game as he tries to prepare for Opening Day after missing time with a sore elbow. He had five plate appearances in a minor-league game Tuesday while playing second base and is expected to do the same tomorrow. If the progress continues, he will DH in a minor-league game Thursday and join the team to play in Milwaukee over the weekend. The goal is to be ready for Monday.
— What’s left in camp? Simply "to set the roster," Yost says. Much of that will be decided once Infante’s availability becomes more apparent.
— Shortstop Alcides Escobar battled some arm issues in camp but is playing right now and proclaims, "I’m ready to go." He looks significantly older after having his braces removed.
— Third baseman Mike Moustakas seems to have a different hairstyle every spring. One year it was long, one year a crewcut. Now it’s a mohawk. Asked about the look, he said he’s had it since January’s Fanfest. True, but it’s much more pronounced now. Hey, whatever works.
Longtime MLB.com reporter Dick Kaegel, who has been writing baseball since well before these players were born, chimed in, "Back when I was in high school, mohawks …." I walked away, but I’m sure the young guys enjoyed that one.
— Jeremy Guthrie incurred the wrath of KU fans when he tweeted about his alma mater Stanford’s win over the Jayhawks this weekend. He says the responses came in fast. Hopefully, he quelled the turmoil with this tweet:
Let out all the emotion guys. How bout the Royals have a great season & we all kiss & make up in the Playoffs! #BeRoyal 👑
— Jeremy Guthrie (@TheRealJGuts) March 23, 2014
Joel Goldberg is an in-game reporter and host of the "Royals Live" pregame and postgame shows on FOX Sports Kansas City.