Three Royals prospects picked for Futures Game

06/21/2012 5:00 AM

06/22/2012 4:01 PM

Outfielder Wil Myers got the word that he’s heading to Kansas City. So did right-handed pitchers Jake Odorizzi and Yordano Ventura.

Not to join the Royals. Not yet.

Myers, 21, will be part of the U.S. team for the second straight year in the All-Star Futures Game, which this year is July 8 at Kauffman Stadium. Odorizzi will join Myers on the U.S. team, while Ventura will play for the World team.

“Honored to be selected to the MLB Futures Game again,” Myers said in a twitter message shortly after the announcement. “Excited to represent the Royals. Exciting times are coming to KC.”

The Futures Game seeks to showcase the game’s top minor-league prospects. Rosters for the U.S. and World teams were announced today by Major League Baseball.

Royals Hall of Famer George Brett is managing the U.S. team, and his staff includes Omaha manager Mike Jirschele. Former Yankees outfielder Bernie Williams is managing the World team.

Several current Royals took part in the Futures Game in recent years, including Billy Butler, Alex Gordon, Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas and Alcides Escobar.

Myers is batting .336 with 24 homers and 62 RBIs while splitting 68 games at Class AAA Omaha and Class AA Northwest Arkansas. Odorizzi, 22, is a combined 8-2 with a 2.89 ERA in 13 games for the same two clubs.

Ventura, 21, is 3-5 with a 3.10 ERA in 13 starts at Class A Wilmington. Although just 5 feet 11 and 140 pounds, he possesses a power arm and has 78 strikeouts in 61 innings.

Odorizzi hasn’t pitched since June 12, but his down time is merely an organizational procedure to rest young arms midway through the season. He is scheduled to start Friday night against Memphis.

The Royals also recently skipped Omaha lefty Mike Montgomery and are planning to do the same soon with Omaha lefty Will Smith to limit their innings.

Myers was the Royals’ third-round pick in 2009; Odorizzi was Milwaukee’s first-round pick in 2008 and came to the Royals as part of the Zack Greinke trade in December 2010; Ventura signed in October 2008 as a free agent from the Dominican Republic.

Getz check

Second baseman Chris Getz should learn the results Friday of a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) exam on the muscle strain in his lower left leg.

The injury surfaced last Sunday in St. Louis while he was chasing after a ground ball in the first inning. The Royals placed Getz on the disabled list Monday after a follow-up examination in Houston.

By Wednesday, however, Getz said he was feeling much better.

“It was just the wrong time to (suffer the injury),” he said. “There was no time to recover (without going on the disabled list).”

Getz is hopeful that the results of today’s exam will permit him to begin a minor-league rehab assignment in the near future.

“If it keeps on healing as quickly as it has,” he said, “I can’t see why not. I didn’t expect to feel this good this quickly. I don’t think anybody did.”

Rehab updates

Right-hander Felipe Paulino yielded three runs in three innings Wednesday night in a rehab start for Northwest Arkansas. He also gave up two walks and four hits while throwing 33 of 54 pitches for strikes.

It was Paulino’s first game action since exiting a June 6 start against Minnesota in the first inning because of a strained right groin. He got a no-decision when the Naturals rallied for a 7-6 victory over Tulsa.

Lorenzo Cain went two for five with a double while playing the whole game in center field in his recovery from a torn left hip flexor. It was the second game of his rehab assignment.

Crown statues

Five All-Star Crown statues, each weighing more than 1,000 pounds, will be placed in the Kansas City area in coming days as part of the All-Star celebration.

Each statue features the iconic Royals’ crown topped by a baseball. Specific locations will be announced at a later date.

Collectible versions of the statue, which are 6.5 inches tall, are already available for purchase at for $24.99. They will be available next week at team shops and retail outlets in the Kansas City area.

O’Sullivan to Toronto

The Royals cut the cord on soft-tossing righty Sean O’Sullivan by trading him to Toronto for cash considerations.

O’Sullivan, 24, was 5-4 with a 6.75 ERA at Omaha in 17 games, including five starts. He was assigned outright to the Storm Chasers on April 4 after clearing waivers, which means every team passed on the opportunity at that time to pick up his $493,500 salary.

The Royals acquired O’Sullivan with lefty Will Smith from the Los Angeles Angels on July 22, 2010 in a trade for infielder Alberto Callaspo. O’Sullivan was 5-12 with a 6.63 ERA for the Royals in 43 games, including 34 starts, in 2010-11.

Minor moves

Right-hander Sugar Ray Marimon got a promotion to Northwest Arkansas from Class A Wilmington just two days after being the winning pitcher for the Carolina League All-Stars in a 9-1 victory over the California League All-Stars.

Marimon, 23, was 4-2 with a 2.12 ERA in 14 games, including nine starts for the Blue Rocks.

The Royals made several other minor-league moves:

Right-hander Matt Ridings replaced Marimon on the Wilmington roster. Ridings, 24, was 4-3 with a two saves and a 2.43 ERA in 21 relief appearances at Class A Kane County.

Shortstop Jack Lopez, outfielder Julio Aparicio and right-handers Kyle Smith and Bryan Brickhouse were promoted to Kane County from short-season Idaho Falls. Brickhouse and Smith were the club’s third- and fourth-round picks in 2011.

Minor details

Outfielder Bubba Starling’s pro debut at short-season Burlington (N.C.) remains on hold because of a sore hamstring. Assistant general manager J.J. Picollo characterized Starling’s status as “day to day.”

Starling, 19, suffered the injury last Sunday in an exhibition game. He was the organization’s first-round pick in 2011.

Celebrity softball

Arrive early Friday night and you can catch the Celebrity Classic Wiffle Ball Game at the Little K. Participants will include Kansas City natives Paul Rudd, Rob Riggle, Jason Sudeikis and Eric Stonestreet.

The game starts at 5:30 p.m., but seating is limited. Gates to the ballpark open at 5 p.m.

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