Tigers' Sizemore suffers a tough break in AFL

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The Tigers suffered quite a scare when second base prospect Scott Sizemore fractured a bone in his left ankle
during Thursday’s game in the Arizona Fall League. All things
considered, it could have been a lot worse since it was determined to
be a “nondisplaced” fracture, meaning that the bone has cracked but
remains in alignment. Sizemore should be fully recovered by spring

“He was playing very well, offensively and defensively, and feeling
really good,” Dombrowski said of Sizemore’s Arizona debut. “But these
things happen.”

“You wish it wouldn’t have happened. You’d rather have another month (in Arizona) under his belt. But he’ll be fine.”

Sizemore, who was a fifth-round
draft pick of the Tigers in 2006, was off to a hot start in the AFL,
batting .368 with three home runs, two doubles and nine RBI over his
first five games. He batted .308/.389/.500 with 17 homers, 66 RBI and
21 stolen bases between Double-A Erie and Triple-A Toledo this season.
He was recently ranked as
the No. 16 prospect in the Eastern League by Baseball America.

General manager Dave Dombrowski would love to hand
the starting second base job over to the 24-year-old. Placido Polanco,
who hit .285/.331/.396 with 10 homers and 72 RBI in 2009 and
.315/.351/.407 after the All-Star break, will surely sign elsewhere.

Royals sign Clay Buchholz to minor league deal

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Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that the Royals have signed pitcher Clay Buchholz to a minor league deal. Buchholz will earn a $1.5 million salary if he makes the club’s major league roster and can earn an additional $250,000 through incentives. Buchholz has an opt-out date set for May 1, which means if he isn’t on the Royals’ 25-man roster by then, he can request his release.

Buchholz, 33, was acquired by the Phillies from the Red Sox in December 2016, but he made only two starts before an MRI revealed he had a partial tear of his right flexor pronator mass. He underwent surgery in April and missed the rest of the season.

The Royals recently lost Jesse Hahn, who was diagnosed with a sprained right UCL. Buchholz would likely be in consideration for a rotation spot if another starter were to suffer an injury. Presently, the Royals’ rotation appears set with Danny Duffy, Ian Kennedy, Jason Hammel, Jake Junis, and Nate Karns.