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Royals Notebook | Bloomquist or Maier -- not DeJesus -- will replace Crisp in center

Look for the Royals to choose between Willie Bloomquist and Mitch Maier as their interim center fielders while Coco Crisp recovers from a strained right rotator cuff.

Manager Trey Hillman shows no inclination to move David DeJesus back to his old position.

“We’ll leave Dave alone in left as much as we can,” Hillman said, “especially since he’s continuing to look better at the plate.”

Nor do the Royals appear inclined to promote another full-time outfielder from the minors. Instead, utility infielders Luis Hernandez and Tug Hulett are taking extra work in right field.

“On an emergency basis,” Hillman said, “in case we need to have it.”

Bloomquist made his third start in center Tuesday in the series opener against Arizona. Maier started last Sunday in center, for the 11th time, when Crisp was placed on the disabled list.

“It will be a combination of both,” Hillman said. “I’m not afraid by any means, offensively or defensively, with either one of them. Some of it will be (based on) matchups, but some of it will depend of whether we need Willie somewhere else.” Back in town

Arizona manager A.J. Hinch only spent two seasons playing for the Royals _ 2001-02 _ but has a long list of friends he’d like to catch up with in this three-game series.

They include Kevin Seitzer, John Wathan and Joe Randa, although Hinch also has some family from Iowa and Oklahoma in town.

Hinch grew up in Oklahoma, and his childhood included numerous family gatherings in Kansas City. The get-togethers were often scheduled around a Royals or Chiefs game.

He liked it so much that he almost moved here.

“I love this area,” he said. “I love Kansas City. I love this park. It looks a lot different now, but it's stood the test of time.”

Hinch confessed he was never a Royals or Chiefs fan growing up. But he would neither confirm nor deny that he was a Broncos fan as a kid because, he said, if word got out, “I’ll get booed in this building.”

Doggone it

Veteran reliever Kyle Farnsworth sported a bandage on his left hand after requiring stitches to close a wound suffered earlier in the day while breaking up a scuffle between his two American bulldogs.

“The young one came and butted in,” he said. “It happened this morning. Then the same situation happened again this afternoon. There were two fights, and the second one was worse. I’ve got to take them to the vet (today).

“One of them has an eye that’s messed up, and the other one has two puncture wounds in the back of his neck. Lots of fun. It’s been a rough day.”

The injury was not expected to affect Farnsworth’s availability.

“I’m planning on him wrapping it up,” Hillman said, “and being available.”

Lack of support

The Royals have yet to see any measurable result from their “Turn St. Lou Royal Blue” campaign in the latest American League All-Star Game balloting release from Major League Baseball.

The update continues to show no Royals among the top five players in balloting at any position. That includes the top 15 outfielders. There is no balloting for pitchers.

In-stadium voting continues through June 28, while online balloting continues through 10:59 p.m. on July 2 at www.MLB.com and the 30 club web sites, including www.royals.com. The teams will be announced July 5.

The All-Star Game is July 14 at Busch Stadium in St. Louis.

Ramirez to Washington

Left-hander Horacio Ramirez, who rejected an opportunity to pitch at Class AAA Omaha, signed a minor-league contract with Washington and will be assigned to Class AAA Syracuse.

Ramirez, 29, was 0-2 with a 5.96 ERA in 19 appearances when designated by the Royals for assignment prior to the June 6 game at Toronto. He cleared waivers but chose to become a free agent rather than accept an assignment to Omaha.

Minor details

Class AA Northwest Arkansas placed three players on the North Division squad for the Texas League All-Star Game, which takes place July 1in Frisco, Texas.

Outfielder Jordan Parraz and third baseman Corey Smith were picked as starters, while second baseman Kurt Mertins was selected as a reserve. Pitching coach Larry Carter will serve on the North staff.

Parraz, 24, joined the Royals as the player to be named in the Nov. 24, 2008 trade that sent left-hander Tyler Lumsden to Houston. Parraz is batting .357 with a .454 on-base percentage, four homers and 37 RBIs in 57 games.

Smith, 27, signed last November with the Royals as a minor-league free agent. He is batting .244 with a .303 OBP, 12 homers and 44 RBIs in 62 games.

Mertins, 23, was the Royals’ 13th-round pick in the 2006 draft. He is batting .298 with a .361 OBP, one homer and 28 RBIs in 54 games.

Carter is in his 12th season as a minor-league pitching coach in the Royals’ system.

More signings

The Royals signed 10 more picks from last week’s draft, including three of their top eight selections: right-hander Mattiew White, a sixth-round pick from New Mexico; left-hander George Baumann, a seventh-round pick from Missouri State; and catcher Benjamin Theriot, a ninth-round pick from Texas State.

Overall, the Royals have signed 17 of their 49 selections.

Looking back

HTML is •It was 22 years ago today -- June 17, 1987 -- that manager Dick Howser succumbed to brain cancer less than two years after guiding the Royals to their only World Series championship.

Sixteen days later, the Royals held Dick Howser Day at then-Royals Stadium. Between games of a double-header sweep over Toronto, the club retired Howser’s No. 10 and inducted him into its Hall of Fame.

HTML is •It was six years ago today -- June 17, 2003 -- that the Royals set a franchise record by scoring 12 runs in an inning in a 14-7 victory over Minnesota at Kauffman Stadium. The explosion came in the sixth inning against Kenny Rogers, Juan Rincon and Mike Nakamura. The rally consisted of seven singles, two doubles, two walks and two hit batsmen.

Etc.

HTML is •The Gloves for Kids program, organized by broadcaster Ryan Lefebvre, raised $6,780 for area youth players Monday at Dick’s Sporting Goods in Town Center Plaza in Overland Park.

HTML is •Mark Teahen has six hits in his last two games and is batting .383 in his last 17 games with 23 hits in 60 at-bats.

HTML is •Alberto Callaspo has hit in nine straight games and is batting .441 in that span with 15 hits in 34 at-bats.

HTML is •The Royals have eight complete games this season from their rotation after registering just two last season. They haven’t had more than eight in any season since recording 12 in 2002.

HTML is •Gil Meche is 14-4 in his career against National League teams.

To reach Bob Dutton, send e-mail to bdutton@kcstar.com.

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