The Royals optioned utility infielder Christian Colon to AAA Omaha and recalled pitcher Brooks Pounders to Kansas City. The move bolsters a tired bullpen that has pitched 9.2 innings in the last two days.
Colon hasn’t hit well in a reserve role for Kansas City this season, slashing a mere .228/.295/.268. There’s no reason to keep the 27-year-old Colon on the roster when he’s hitting no better than Raul Mondesi Jr. While the Royals will have to wait 10 days to recall Colon after sending him down, they can easily bring up the more versatile Whit Merrifield when rosters expand on Friday.
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At this point, you have to wonder just how long Colon will remain in the Kansas City organization. The former no. 4 overall draft pick in 2010 doesn’t appear to have much of a role on the roster going forward.
On the other hand, 25-year-old Brooks Pounders has enjoyed a nice two-year run in the minor leagues. Pounders has risen all the way from High A Wilmington to begin 2015, to the KC Royals in 2016. He’s 5-3 with a 3.15 ERA in 80.1 at AAA Omaha this season with a 10.1 K/9.
Pounders did get a taste of major-league baseball earlier this season, making his debut with Kansas City on July 5. He earned his first major league win with one inning of scoreless relief against the Seattle Mariners on July 7 in KC’s 4-3 victory. Seattle bombed him for five runs three days later to help inflate his ERA to 13.50. This time, he’s likely to get more than 4.2 innings pitched to prove himself.
The 6’5″ 265-pound reliever throws a fastball that sits close to 93 mph and can touch 95. He’s pretty much a fastball/slider guy coming out of the pen, but does throw an occasional change-up.