Results tagged ‘ Brayan Pena ’
The Royals announced on Monday that the club has agreed to terms one-year Major League contracts with infielder Chris Getz and catcher Brayan Pena, avoiding arbitration. Consistent with club policy, terms of the contracts were not disclosed. The Royals now have five remaining arbitration-eligible players: pitchers Luke Hochevar, Felipe Paulino and Jonathan Sanchez; and outfielders Alex Gordon and Mitch Maier.
Getz, 28, batted .255 (97-for-380) with six doubles, 26 RBI and 21 stolen bases in 118 games for the Royals in 2011. He was acquired by Kansas City in a trade with the Chicago White Sox on November 6, 2009. Born in Southfield, Mich., he now resides in Grosse Pointe, Mich.
Pena, who just turned 30 on January 7, batted .248 (55-for-222) with 11 doubles, three home runs and 24 RBI in 72 games for the Royals in 2011. Pena set career highs in games played, at bats, hits, doubles and RBI. He was acquired by Kansas City in a waiver claim from the Atlanta Braves on May 30, 2008. Born in Havana, Cuba, he now resides in Miami, Fla.
The Royals announced that the club has reached agreements with infielder Wilson Betemit and catcher Brayan Pena on Major League contracts for 2011, avoiding arbitration. Consistent with club policy, terms of the agreements were not disclosed. In addition, the Royals announced that infielder Josh Fields will not be tendered a 2011 Major League contract.
The 29-year old Betemit batted .297 with 13 home runs and 43 RBI in 84 games after having his contract selected from Triple-A Omaha on May 25. The switch-hitter batted .265 in 29 games with Omaha. Betemit holds a .266 batting average in 600 Major League games since his debut with Atlanta in 2001.
Pena, 28, posted a .253 average in 60 games while serving as KC’s backup catcher in 2010. The switch-hitter batted .320 with 15 RBI over his final 28 games and was named A.L. Player of the Week for September 6-12. He holds a .253 lifetime average in 195 Major League games.
Fields, who turns 28 on December 14, missed most of 2010 after undergoing labral surgery on his right hip. He batted .306 (15-for-49) in 13 games after being activated from the 60-day disabled list on September 1. He was acquired from the Chicago White Sox on November 5, 2009.
The move to non-tender Fields places Kansas City’s 40-man Major League roster at 39.
We’ll look at several of the topics discussed, starting with…you, the fans!
Yost has the utmost respect for the fans in Kansas City and described them as a classy group. He knows that they are dying for a winner and that they deserve one. He’s never been in a stadium where the fans chant “Let’s go (team name)” as well as at Kauffman Stadium. He knows that the fans want to see a good baseball game and like him, expect a team that plays hard and never gives up. Yost believes that nearly every time that he left the dugout, his players had left it all on the field. He was impressed that the fans acknowledged opposing players for a milestone (example – their first Major League hit).
Are the Rays a realistic comparison?
Is it realistic to compare the Royals to the Rays? (Tampa Bay built their farm system and now they are headed to the postseason for the second time in three years). Yost believes that it is a fair comparison because of the depth of talent in Kansas City’s minor league system. He believes that the Royals are bringing players along at a similar pace to Tampa Bay. Due to the mental and physical demands of the Major Leagues, a majority of the group that was in Double-A this year needs to continue their development at Triple-A in Yost’s opinion.
On the coaching side of things, Yost is looking at ways to improve the information flow to the players through advance reports. He knows that errors will happen on the field, but believes in minimizing the opportunity to make errors.
As reported yesterday, all of the coaches will be back in 2011. Yost does have one position to fill as Rusty Kuntz will be working as a roving coach and special assistant in 2011. Yost knows who that person will be and expects an announcement to be made in the next few days, once the “I’s are dotted and the T’s are crossed”.
Yost expects Aviles to be much stronger heading into 2011 as he continues his way back from “Tommy John” surgery. He would like to see Aviles at third base but needs to see more of him there to make a proper evaluation. Yost believes that Aviles is up to the challenge.
Yost said that the shortstop did a great job of staying focused this year and that Betancourt knows what he needs to work on. Betancourt lives in Miami, as does third base coach and fellow native Cuban Eddie Rodriguez. The pair will work regularly this offseason. Yost gave credit to Rodriguez for helping Yuni during the season. Betancourt is a clutch hitter and not an on-base percentage player, so Yost feels comfortable with Betancourt driving in runs from the seventh or eighth place in the order.
Yost believes that Butler will eventually become a 25-30 home run player who consistently drives in 100+ runs. The fact that his walks are up and his strikeouts are down is a sign that he is turning the corner. Yost sees Butler as a #3 hitter more than a cleanup hitter.
Yost believes that Greinke has the ability to be a Cy Young-caliber pitcher on a yearly basis. He said that 2010 was difficult for Greinke due to the notoriety that goes along with the award.
Both Brayan Pena and Lucas May were sent home with “prescriptions” on what they need to do to improve in 2011. Yost believes that Pena, an offensive catcher, did a fair job on game calling toward the end of the year. Bruce Chen’s shutout on Friday was a great example of Pena’s improvement.
Manny Pina, who played in a combined 91 games with Northwest Arkansas and Omaha, will get a good look in Spring Training. Pina is a defensive-oriented catcher and Yost believes that Pina’s offensive game will improve.
Moose on track
Yost will be traveling to Puerto Rico later this week to watch six of Kansas City’s prospects play on Team USA. He will see Mike Moustakas for the first time since early in the year, when he watched Moose at Northwest Arkansas.
Yost made it clear that it is important not to rush Moustakas. In his opinion, he would want to see the third baseman put up his Double-A numbers for a consistent period of time at Triple-A.
Catching up on Kendall
According to Yost, Jason Kendall is doing pretty well after having extensive shoulder surgery. He is currently still locked up in a sling and recently returned from a doctor’s visit in California where he performed minor rehab exercises. Yost believes the catcher is on schedule and may even be a bit ahead.
Pena’s positives and negatives
One goal of Yost’s in the past few weeks has been to look at new guys, but he also wants to achieve the main objective of winning games. Consequently, Yost has had to alter his plan of splitting playing time between Brayan Pena and Lucas May because he admits it has been difficult to take Pena’s hot bat out of the lineup. Yost added that he thinks Pena’s offensive performance has been good, but his defensive performance has been mixed. He thinks Pena needs to get in better shape and improve his agility behind the plate in order to become an everyday catcher. Yost also said his number one priority when it comes to catchers is finding someone who can catch the ball, throw guys out, block balls in the dirt, and call a good game–hitting takes a back seat.
Chris Getz passed his first stage of tests yesterday, which included trials on the treadmill and elliptical, and he is expected to move to the second stage, which consists of running outside. If all goes well, Yost said Getz will play in the next day or so.
Starting pitcher Luke Hochevar will throw without restrictions in today’s game. The manager anticipates Hoch tossing somewhere between 90-100 pitches.
Congratulations to catcher Brayan Pena, who was named A.L. Player of the Week today for the week of September 6-12. Brayan batted .435 on the week and ranked among the A.L. leaders in RBI (T-1st, nine), hits (T-3rd, 10), batting average (T-3rd, .435), total
bases (T-7th, 16) and slugging percentage (10th, .696). In addition, Brayan threw out 40 percent (2-of-5) of runners attempting to steal a base. Way to go Brayan!
You might remember that former Kansas Jayhawk Cole Aldrich threw out a first pitch a few months ago. Tonight, it was K-State’s turn, with men’s basketball coach Frank Martin taking the mound. Martin was the first member of his family born in the U.S. after they immigrated from Cuba. This afternoon, he met with Yuniesky Betancourt and Brayan Pena, both natives of Cuba.
Tonight fans will see David DeJesus in center field and Mitch Maier in right field, a decision Yost made simply because DeJesus is playing great at that position and he wants Maier to become acclimated with all three outfield positions.
Yost said the two errors in last night’s game were not due to a lack of focus nor were they related to the team having time off over the All-Star Break. Instead, he believes the errors were aggressive mistakes and the result of the players trying to do too much in an effort to get off on the right foot in the second half of the season. Yost expects the team to be less anxious tonight and to play a little more controlled.
Under further review
The manager also discussed Coco Crisp’s controversial leadoff double in last night’s game. Yost said the reversed call definitely set a dangerous precedent for the contest. While he understands that human error is a natural part of the game and that players and coaches have to live with mistakes, he also believes players and teams should get what they earn, but not to the point that the game is stopped for review after every play.
Pena playing time
Yost also announced that Brayan Pena will see a little more action in the remainder of the season. Yost knows, however, that playing time is not a major concern of Pena’s. The manager described Pena as a great team player who understands and accepts his backup role behind Jason Kendall. Additionally, Yost claimed that Pena is the perfect guy for the backup catcher position and is always working hard and getting in as many reps as possible.
Gil Meche bounced back really well today and has plans to play catch, play long toss, and throw a side tomorrow. Should things go as planned, Yost hopes to send the pitcher out on a rehab assignment, probably to Double-A Northwest Arkansas, on Wednesday. According to Yost, Meche is back to feeling good and healthy, though his command is still a bit shaky.
RAIN DELAY UPDATE: We are expecting to start the game at 7:10 p.m.
With his first day and win as Royals manager in the books, Ned Yost addressed the Kansas City media this afternoon. Yost was excited about the first 24 hours in Kansas City, stating that much of what he has been working on to this point was getting his staff organized and communicating his coaching philosophy to staff and players.
Yost was asked about his bullpen and how he plans on using it. He responded by saying that to this point the bullpen is still a little unsettled and that late inning roles tend to define themselves. Yost stated that he will consider using Royals closer Joakim Soria in four-out situations; but believes that closers are at their best when they are used for only three outs. Yost reaffirmed that everyone is starting with a clean slate; he approaches his bullpen under the mindset that everyone will be successful at their jobs and won’t change that thinking unless proven otherwise. When asked on situational use of late-inning arms, Yost said he doesn’t restrict himself to the conventional lefty-lefty or righty-righty matchups. Some situations will require going by the numbers and others will call Yost to go with his ‘gut’. Ultimately, Yost said he will manage each situation in order to win the ballgame and not just cover himself and go by the book.
Yost was also asked to comment on his role players and how he views the second base job. Yost said his primary concern is to find playing time for Kila Ka’aihue, Willie Bloomquist, Chris Getz, and Brayan Pena. Yost understands the difficulty of their roles on this team, but told them to always be prepared to perform when called upon. Yost also stated that infielder Mike Aviles’ hot bat will continue to find him in the lineup at second base.
Royals’ Manager Trey Hillman met with the media prior to this afternoon’s game.
Hillman was asked about the health of catcher Jason Kendall:
Kendall’s forearm was x-rayed during last night’s rain delay and the results came back negative. Kendall would not react to the contusion after being hit by a pitch last night and declined to be taken out of the game. Hillman was impressed by Kendall’s gritty toughness, but made the decision to hold him out of today’s lineup.
Hillman also commented on pitcher Blake Wood who made his Major League debut last night:
Hillman is dead-set on keeping Wood in the bullpen; stating the he assessed the young right-hander during Spring Training and that he has the perfect mental make-up to be a successful reliever. When the team broke Spring Training for Opening Day, Hillman was strongly considering Wood for one of the bullpen spots. Had it not been for some forearm issues slowing down Wood, Hillman believes he likely would have broken with the Major League club.
Hillman finished by talking briefly about today’s starting pitcher Zack Greinke:
Hillman thinks that Greinke will be comfortable with today’s starting catcher Brayan Pena. Pena caught Greinke a few times last season, developing a positive rapport between the two. Hillman continued by addressing the lack of offensive contribution during Greinke’s starts this year. A major reason behind the lack of run support is due to hitters putting added pressure on themselves to score runs for the ace pitcher, especially coming of the Cy Young Award.
Royals Hall of Fame closer Jeff Montgomery (48) and catcher Brayan Pena (28) will both celebrate on January 7. CBS news anchor Katie Couric will be 53 while actor Nicholas Cage turns 46. Charles Addams, a cartoonist who created “The Addams Family,” was born on January 7, 1912.
Shortstop Yuniesky Betancourt rounds out our birthdays for January. Yuni will be 28 on January 31. Three noted baseball Hall of Famers were born on January 31 and all have a Kansas City connection. Ernie Banks, a former Kansas City Monarch who later became “Mr. Cub,” turns 79. Nolan Ryan, the only visiting player to throw a no-hitter at Kauffman Stadium, will be 63. The late Jackie Robinson, also a former Monarch, was born on January 31, 1919.
We’ve come full circle since last February, when Alex Gordon headlined our birthdays. Look for future birthday updates on an individual basis via our Twitter page. ( @aroundthehornkc )