Royals deal for Matt Treanor following Jason Kendall setback

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Jason Kendall’s recent setback in his recovery from shoulder surgery means he likely won’t be ready to come off the disabled list until at least late April–and possibly much later–so the Royals have added some catching depth by acquiring Matt Treanor from the Rangers for cash considerations.

Treanor spent a large chunk of last season as the Rangers’ primary catcher, but gave way to Bengie Molina late in the season and was behind both Yorvit Torrealba and Mike Napoli on Texas’ catching depth chart for this year.

He’ll get a chance to back up Brayan Pena in Kansas City until Kendall returns, at which point the 35-year-old Treanor and his .621 career OPS will likely head to Triple-A or the waiver wire.

Royals sign Drew Storen to minor league deal

Drew Storen
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The Royals are in agreement with right-handed reliever Drew Storen on a minor league deal, the team announced Friday. Per Jon Heyman of MLB Network, the deal is worth $1.25 million if the veteran righty breaks camp with the club this spring. Additional, albeit unspecified incentives will be included in the contract as well.

Storen, 31, is coming off of a protracted absence from any MLB duties. After inking a one-year deal with the Reds in 2017, he sustained a right elbow sprain toward the end of the year and underwent Tommy John surgery that October. He was effectively decommissioned for the club’s entire 2018 run and generated little interest around the league this winter, perhaps due in part to the uninspired 4.45 ERA, 3.8 BB/9, 7.9 SO/9, and career-low -0.2 fWAR he posted across 54 2/3 innings during his last healthy season.

While it’s not immediately clear what kind of performance the Royals can expect from Storen in spring training, they’re not exactly in a position to be choosy. Their bullpen ranked dead last among all MLB teams with a collective 5.04 ERA, 4.85 FIP, and -2.2 fWAR last year, and still appears to be in a state of flux as they approach Opening Day. Skipper Ned Yost told reporters Wednesday that he intends to eschew the traditional closer appointment in 2019 and will instead utilize a combination of right-handers Wily Peralta and Brad Boxberger, lefty Tim Hill, and various others as he tackles high-leverage situations in the future.