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Royals sign catcher Olivo

If you can’t beat him, have him join you?

Noted Royals killer Miguel Olivo signed a one-year deal with a mutual option for 2009 to play in Kansas City.

Olivo, 29, hit .237 with 16 homers and 60 RBIs as Florida’s primary catcher last season. Included in those numbers was a three-game series at Kauffman Stadium in which he torched the Royals, going eight-for-13 with a homer, two doubles and three RBIs.

The Marlins were so aware of Olivo’s success against the Royals that he started at catcher for a day game after a night game, a rarity. He went 0-for-4 then, less than 24 hours after his first career five-hit game.

Defensively, Olivo threw out 45 of 144 (31.2 percent) of attempted base stealers the last two seasons, which ranked fourth in the National League.

He is a career .239 hitter with 61 homers and 224 RBIs over six seasons with the White Sox, Mariners, Padres and Marlins.

Olivo is a career .415 hitter at Kauffman Stadium, which is second all-time among players with at least 50 at-bats (Javy Lopez, .423). He is a career .398 hitter (37-for-101) overall against the Royals, by far his best against any particular team.

He is from the Dominican Republic and a distant cousin of Royals shortstop Tony Peña Jr.

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