AP Photo/Charlie Riedel

Royals “already know they will not be trying to retain Johnny Cueto”

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Johnny Cueto was brilliant in Game 2 of the World Series on Wednesday night in Kansas City and he was also terrific in ALDS Game 5, but his other two starts this postseason have been clunkers and he registered an underwhelming 4.76 ERA in 13 regular-season outings for the Royals after being acquired from the Reds in late July.

The impending free agent right-hander has done serious damage to his open market value, though he should be able to find at least one team willing to bank that he can return to ace-like status. Kansas City apparently won’t be that team …

The Royals already know they will not be trying to retain Johnny Cueto. They expect his free-agent price tag to go beyond their comfort level and, also, they have seen enough of his inconsistency to be worried about trying to keep him long term anyway.

That comes from Joel Sherman of the New York Post, who notes that the Royals do plan to engage in serious negotiations with Alex Gordon and Ben Zobrist.

Brewers have 3 positive COVID tests at alternate site

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
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MILWAUKEE — The Brewers had two players and a staff member test positive for the coronavirus at their alternate training site in Appleton, Wisconsin.

Milwaukee president of baseball operations David Stearns confirmed the positive results Saturday and said they shouldn’t impact the major league team. Teams are using alternate training sites this season to keep reserve players sharp because the minor league season was canceled due to the pandemic.

Stearns said the positive tests came Monday and did not name the two players or the staff member. Players must give their permission for their names to be revealed after positive tests.

The entire camp was placed in quarantine.

“We have gone through contact tracing,” Stearns said. “We do not believe it will have any impact at all on our major league team. We’ve been fortunate to get through this season relatively unscathed in this area. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to get all the way there at our alternate site.”

Milwaukee entered Saturday one game behind the Reds and Cardinals for second place in the NL Central, with the top two teams qualifying for the postseason.

The Brewers still will be able to take taxi squad players with them on the team’s trip to Cincinnati and St. Louis in the final week of the season. He said those players have had repeated negative tests and the team is “confident” there would be no possible spread of the virus.

“Because of the nature of who these individuals were, it’s really not going to affect the quarantine group at all,” Stearns said. “We’re very fortunate that the group of players who could potentially be on a postseason roster for us aren’t interacting all that much with the individuals that tested positive.”