Meet Some New Royals…
Resides: San Cristobal, Dominican Republic
Last Season: With the Seattle Mariners where he hit .290 with 28 doubles, 23 homers and 99 RBI. The right-handed batter, hit .362 against lefties, the second-best mark in the A.L.
Note: He hit .329 with eight home runs and 36 RBI in 39 games against A.L. Central opponents in 2007. In the homer category, with the exception of 2006 when he missed 93 games due to injuries, he has topped the 20-home run mark in every season since 2003.
Ron Mahay (MAY-hay)
Position: Left-handed Pitcher
Resides: Litchfield Park, Ariz.
Last Season: Split his time between the Texas Rangers and Atlanta Braves, combining for a 3-0 record with one save and equaling a career best with a 2.55 ERA in 58 appearances.
Note: In 2007, the southpaw held opponents to a .218 average and, specifically, limited lefties to just a .189 average. In his career, the 11-year veteran is 19-10 with four saves and a 3.87 ERA in 359 career appearances.
Resides: Oakdale, Calif.
In 2007: He hit .237 with 20 doubles, four triples, 16 homers and 60 RBI in 122 games as a member of the Florida Marlins.
Note: Defensively, he has thrown out 31.2 percent of attempted base stealers the past two seasons, good for fourth-best in the National League.
Yasuhiko Yabuta (Yah-soo-HEE-co Yah-BOO-tuh)
Position: Right-handed Pitcher
Resides: Urayasu, Chiba, Japan
Last Season: Posted a 4-6 mark with four saves, 38 holds and a 2.73 ERA in 58 relief outings for the Chiba Lotte Marines (Japan’s Pacific League) in 2007. In 62.2 innings, he walked just 10 while striking out 45.
Note: Since the 2004 season, Yabuta, who has spent his entire 12-year professional career pitching for the Marines, has compiled a 2.80 ERA in 222 games as Chiba Lotte’s main setup reliever. He is 44-59 with nine saves and a 4.03 ERA in 343 career appearances, including 86 starts, in his career. Oh, and he did that thing in the World Baseball Classic where he struck out A-Rod, Derrek Lee and Johnny Damon in a brief 1.1-inning outing against the United States.
Resides: Liberty Hill, Texas
Last Season (and the four seasons before that): Managed the Nippon Ham Fighters in Japan, where he took them to the postseason three times and the Japan Series in back-to-back seasons (2006-2007). Took home the Japan Series title in 2006 as well the 2006 Japan “Sportsman of the Year” title.
Note: Launched his career as a manager at the tender age of 27 in the Yankees organization, where he spent 11 consecutive years as the manager for various New York affiliates.