On Sunday, left-handed Kansas City Royals relievers Tim Collins and Francisley Bueno combined to turn a tight 1-0 deficit into a 5-0 bulge in the top of the ninth inning Sunday. The implosion was largely responsible for Kansas City’s 5-1 defeat against the Chicago White Sox in what was a fantastic pitching duel between Royals Ace James Shields and Chicago’s Chris Sale.
On Monday, the Royals put both Collins and Bueno on the 15-day DL.
Yost told Dick Kaegel of KCRoyals.com that:
Collins came in after the game and told Nick [Royals head trainer Nick Kenney] that he’s had some stiffness and some soreness in his elbow,” manager Ned Yost said. “They gave him an MRI today and there’s some inflammation in his elbow so we’re going to shut him down for five or five days and go from there.
Bueno’s got a sprained finger,” Yost said. “He reached out on a ball yesterday that Omar [Infante] ended up catching but he sprained his pinkie finger on his throwing hand. It makes it very difficult to grip a baseball. It’s probably a five- or six-day injury but it’s too tough early in the season to go short in the pen.
While the Royals could just be taking reasonable pre-cautions with banged up pitchers, the move could also indicate the Kansas City front office is not going to have patience with early season struggles like they did last season. Poor early performances from RF Jeff Francoeur, RHP Wade Davis, and 2B Chris Getz could have cost the Royals a playoff run in 2013.
Monday’s moves could be a hopeful sign that Royals management will not demonstrate the same slow hook that cost them last season.