Royals make first spring cuts

Johnny Giavotella

Kansas City on Monday made its first cuts of the spring, sending four players to the minor leagues. The Royals reassigned second baseman Johnny Giavotella and pitchers Brandon Sisk and Gaby Hernandez to minor league camp while optioning southpaw Noel Arguelles – who is on the club's 40-man roster – to Wilmington.

None of the cuts came as any surprise, as most of the players with legitimate chances to break camp with the Royals won't be reassigned until later this spring.

Johnny Giavotella appeared in five spring games for the Royals, collecting a double in six official at bats, along with three walks. The 23-year-old second baseman is expected to open the season with the Triple-A Omaha Storm Chasers after hitting a robust .322/.395/.460 in 2010 while leading the Texas League champion NW Arkansas Naturals with 92 runs scored.

Brandon Sisk made two one-inning appearances out of the Royals' bullpen this spring, surrendering one earned run on two hits while fanning a pair of hitters and walking none. The 25-year-old southpaw also played his 2010 season with the Naturals, posting a 4.46 ERA and nine saves while ringing up 63 batters in 68.2 innings pitched.

Gaby Hernandez joined the Royals' organization last March after being designated for assignment by the Boston Red Sox, and he spent the entire 2010 season with Omaha, leading the club with 10 victories while posting a 4.91 ERA. The 24-year-old right-hander spent the entire season on the Royals' 40-man roster, but he was outrighted to Triple-A in late November after clearing waivers. This spring he arrived at big league camp as a non-roster invitee, and he appeared in two games for the Royals, surrendering one earned run in two innings pitched.

Cuban defector Noel Arguelles signed a five-year, $6.9 million Major League deal with the Royals in late 2009, but he has yet to pitch a competitive inning for the club after experiencing shoulder pain in Arizona. He underwent surgery on the shoulder last August and has been rehabbing in Arizona ever since. He could, however, be ready to join Wilmington when the Blue Rocks open the season on April 8.

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