Luke Hochevar eyes May return to the Royals’ bullpen

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Kansas City didn’t end up missing Luke Hochevar much last season because the bullpen was ridiculously good without him, but now he’s close to being healthy again after Tommy John surgery and perhaps the Royals could use another late-inning option.

After being a bust as a starter Hochevar shifted to the bullpen full time in 2013 and threw 70 innings with a 1.92 ERA and 82/17 K/BB ratio. He looked pretty good in a handful of spring training outings and Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star reports that the former No. 1 overall pick is building up arm strength at Triple-A in the hopes of being ready at some point in May.

Hochevar told McCullough that to throw “back-to-back days and be able to repeat my stuff” are the two biggest remaining keys to his recovery.