KANSAS CITY -- It still looks like the Bubba Starling question won't be answered until the Aug. 15 signing deadline.

Starling, a right-handed power-hitting outfielder, was the Royals' top choice in June's First-Year Player Draft but is currently throwing footballs in practice at the University of Nebraska, where he has a scholarship.

"It'll be an August 15th thing, same as every year," Royals general manager Dayton Moore predicted.

Gordon rests sore foot; Maier leads off

KANSAS CITY -- When left fielder Alex Gordon hobbled off the Royals' plane on Sunday night, manager Ned Yost started thinking about a different lineup for Monday night's game against the White Sox.

Gordon was a casualty of his own foul ball during Sunday's 4-3 loss at Minnesota.

"He fouled a ball off his [right] foot, continued to play and when he got off the plane, he wasn't moving very good," Yost said on Monday. "He had a lot of swelling. They treated him last night after getting off the plane. His pain was about a nine out of 10, and he came today and it was a 3 1/2 out of 10 and he could probably play, but we'll give him a day. He'll more than likely be in there tomorrow."

Backup Mitch Maier got the call for left field and was inserted in the leadoff spot in the batting order, moving Chris Getz down to ninth. Maier, a left-handed batter, had good success previously (9-for-26, .346) against White Sox lefty Mark Buehrle, but he went 0-for-4 against the southpaw in the 5-2 loss.

As Yost pointed out, the Royals really don't have a prototypical leadoff man on the roster.

"It's kind of up for grabs a little bit right now," Yost said. "We don't have the perfect-case-scenario leadoff guy right now.

"I don't like bouncing guys back and forth. I liked it when Gordo was in there, but we'll fit Mitch in there today and continue to think through it. We can put Gordy back in there, Melky [Cabrera] did OK in that spot. I like having a little pop there. Getzy does a real nice job of putting the ball in play and has a real high average with runners in scoring position."

Lefty Teaford optioned to Triple-A Omaha

KANSAS CITY -- Left-handed reliever Everett Teaford was optioned to Triple-A Omaha to make roster room for returning starter Danny Duffy.

The expected move on Teaford was made after Monday night's 5-2 loss to Chicago, but the Duffy activation will not be made official until Tuesday before he faces the White Sox.

Teaford faced two batters in the sixth inning on Monday, giving up an RBI groundout to Mark Teahen and a run-scoring single to Juan Pierre. Both runs were unearned and charged to losing pitcher Kyle Davies.

In two stays with the Royals this year, Teaford has no record with a 2.25 ERA. He got his first Major League save on July 9 by pitching three shutout innings against the Tigers.

Moore not expecting much Deadline action

KANSAS CITY -- On the Trade Deadline front, Royals general manager Dayton Moore is doing a lot of talking but sensing little action.

"There's a lot of talk," Moore said, but he added: "I don't think we'll do much."

Most trade speculation centers around center fielder Melky Cabrera, right fielder Jeff Francoeur and infielder Wilson Betemit.

Moore ticked off the names of current Royals Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas and Alcides Escobar and such up-and-comers as outfielder Lorenzo Cain, second baseman Johnny Giavotella and catcher Salvador Perez.

Trade Include

"That's an important part of our future, so we've got to make sure we have some quality guys around them that can produce and help stabilize things," Moore said. "We know these guys, we like these guys and I think just keep 'em unless we get something that's going to make sense."

The Royals' biggest needs are starting pitchers and right-handed hitters with power.

Crown Points

• Scout Kelly Heath is no longer coordinating the Royals' in-house advance scouting on opposing teams. "Kelly just felt more comfortable being out there in the field," general manager Dayton Moore said. Instead, bullpen catcher Bill Duplissea is working with video coordinator Mark Topping on the scouting reports.

• Pitcher Jeremy Jeffress, who started the season in the Royals' bullpen and was optioned to Triple-A Omaha, has been sent to Double-A Northwest Arkansas to work as a starter. Just three of his 16 Omaha outings were starts and he had a 2-3 record and 7.13 ERA.

• Second baseman Johnny Giavotella hit two home runs and was 4-for-4 in a 7-4 Omaha win over New Orleans on Sunday. That made him 13-for-24 (.542) in his last six games. Veteran pitcher Jeff Suppan went seven innings and boosted his record to 8-5.

• Pitcher Aaron Crow will meet donors at the Community Blood Center, 4040 Main St. in Kansas City, from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. CT on Tuesday. All registered donors in the 19th annual Royals Blood Drive through Friday will receive two tickets to a Royals game and a commemorative T-shirt.