KANSAS CITY, Mo. The math is simple. Four candidates, maybe more, and just one spot open at the bottom of the Royals' rotation.
And the losers in the fight for the Royals' fifth spot will go directly to the bullpen, perhaps the minors, or perhaps even to the waiver wire.
That's the situation ever since Royals general manager Dayton Moore pulled the trigger on the team's biggest trade in years last December when he added James Shields and Wade Davis to the rotation already occupied by Jeremy Guthrie and Ervin Santana.
For right-hander Luke Hochevar, once the top overall pick in the draft, it's his turn at the crossroads. He either turns his career around, or he gets pushed to the side in his case, most likely the bullpen.
Interestingly, Hochevar, 29, is ready for whatever fate awaits him, even if it's a bullpen gig.
"So be it, if it's the bullpen," Hochevar said. " It doesn't matter where I'm at. I'll take the ball and do ...