Royals sticking with .184-hitting rookie Mike Moustakas

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Several of the prospects called up by the Royals this season are playing well, but Mike Moustakas isn’t one of them.

Moustakas has hit just .184 with one homer and a .473 OPS in 51 games since being called up in mid-June, but manager Ned Yost explained to Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star that the Royals are sticking with the 22-year-old third baseman:

He’s playing spectacular defense at third base. So, he’ll figure it out here. You go through these things. That’s why we brought him up now. So he could go through it now. It’s what we keep talking about. These kids all go through this. This is nothing new. He’s good enough that he’ll figure it out.

I think that’s absolutely the right approach for a rebuilding to team to take with a top prospect and former first-round pick, although it would have been nice if the Royals had shown similar patience with Alex Gordon in past seasons.

Moustakas will probably wind up pushing his overall OPS above .500 by season’s end, but if not he’ll become the first 22-year-old to play at least 50 games and post a sub-.500 OPS since Luis Ordaz for the Cardinals in 1998. Ordaz went on to play just 136 more games after 1998 and 126 of them were for the Royals.

Braves sign David Hernandez

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Bill Whitehead of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that the Braves have signed reliever David Hernandez to a minor league contract on Sunday. He’ll report to spring training as a non-roster invitee.

Hernandez, who turns 32 years old in May, signed a minor league contract with the Giants in February. He requested and was granted his release on Friday when he learned he wasn’t making the team’s 25-man roster to open the season.

Hernandez pitched for the Phillies last year. He compiled a 3.84 ERA with an 80/32 K/BB ratio in 72 2/3 innings.

Dave Roberts: It “doesn’t make sense” for Scott Kazmir to start year in Dodgers’ rotation

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Scott Kazmir won’t begin the regular season in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Manager Dave Roberts said after Kazmir’s Cactus League outing on Sunday that it “doesn’t make sense” for the ailing Kazmir to break camp in the rotation, Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times reports. The lefty will instead rehab some more and join the rotation at a later time.

Kazmir has been battling a hip issue which has caused his mechanics to suffer. He was clocked in the low 80’s 10 days ago and wasn’t much better on Sunday afternoon.

Last season with the Dodgers, Kazmir posted a 4.56 ERA with a 134/52 K/BB ratio in 136 1/3 innings, his worst numbers since returning to the majors in 2013.