by John Viril—
The Royals have optioned outfielder David Lough to the minor leagues, released veteran OF Xavier Nady and RP George Sherrill and named Luis Mendoza the 5th starter. With these moves, the final shape of the 25-man roster becomes almost entirely resolved.
By optioning Lough, who led all Royals hitters with a .455 batting average this spring, the team has clearly opted for a four-man outfield and two-utility infielder bench. That suggests a bench of Jarrod Dyson, utility infielders Elliot Johnson and Miguel Tejada, and either George Kottaras or Brett Hayes as the backup catcher.
The only remaining roster question seems to be who is the 7th relief pitcher. With Mendoza winning (for now) the 5th starter role, Bruce Chen goes to long relief. Greg Holland is the closer, with Tim Collins, Aaron Crow, Kelvin Herrera and Luke Hochevar in single inning set-up roles. Since Yost earlier announced he would use seven relievers, that leaves one more open bullpen job.
This structure l...