BOSTON -- Outfielder Mitch Maier, pressed into emergency duty as a pitcher in the Royals' 13-9 loss on Tuesday night, had a surreal few minutes before he threw a pitch.
As he came out of the right-field bullpen, a fan jumped out the stands and veered near him.
"A fan getting tackled. It was awesome," Maier said. "I think it actually relieved a lot of the pressure, because it was a big distraction. I see this guy run onto the field and get body-slammed by a security guard."
At the same time, the sellout crowd at Fenway Park was bellowing out the traditional eighth-inning rendition of "Sweet Caroline." So Maier had raucous musical accompaniment.
Then, to top things off, home-plate umpire Chris Conroy came out to remind him that both benches had been issued warnings against throwing at batters, so if Maier happened to plunk somebody, both he and his manager might be ejected.
Given all that, Maier still managed to throw strikes and retired three of the four batters he faced, making him the only Royals pitcher who didn't give up a run.
"He did just what I wanted him to do," manager Ned Yost said. "He didn't get crazy. ... He's smart enough to not do something stupid, try to throw 100 miles an hour and perpetuate the agony. Just throw the ball."
Francoeur not paying attention to trade rumors
BOSTON -- Royals right fielder Jeff Francoeur figures he's given at least six or seven interviews about being traded in just the three days he's been in Boston -- probably a natural consequence because Red Sox right fielder J.D. Drew is on the 15-day disabled list.
"Like anything, there's always stuff thrown around, there are always people throwing out ideas, and once it's going, they kind of run with it," Francoeur said.
"But with me, I've planned on being here the whole year and next year, and I don't plan on going anywhere."
The non-waiver Trade Deadline is 3 p.m. CT on Sunday, and among the Royals, Francoeur and center fielder Melky Cabrera have been names in the rumor mill. Francoeur and the Royals have a mutual option for next season, and Cabrera doesn't have enough service time to become a free agent.
"Melky's talked, too, and we both like it here. We both want to stay here," Francoeur said. "It'd be one thing if we were a lot older, but he's about to turn 27 and I'm 27 and we're really young in baseball terms, so this is perfect for us."
There's something of a New England connection for the Atlanta-born Francoeur, because his father's family is from Springfield, Mass.
"Last night, my grandma was up here to get to see me play, so it's cool, it was neat for me to have her here," Francoeur said.
Francoeur has been traded during the season in each of the previous two years, so he's used to this scenario. Even last year, before the Mets dealt him to the Rangers on Aug. 31, he was often checking out chatter on the Internet. No more.
"When you start to worry about that stuff too much, it messes you up and I'm not worried about it at all," he said. "All you can do is show up and play every day. So I plan on playing here the next two games, playing three in Cleveland and go back to my house in Kansas City -- until I hear otherwise."
Prospect Perez promoted to Triple-A Omaha
BOSTON -- Catcher Salvador Perez's rapid rise in the Royals' organization continued on Wednesday when he was promoted to Triple-A Omaha. He's expected to get a shot at the Major League roster in Spring Training 2012.
Perez, 21, is acknowledged as an excellent defensive catcher and his hitting has improved with Double-A Northwest Arkansas. In 79 games, his average was .283, with nine homers and 43 RBIs. He was on fire in his last four games, going 10-for-16 with two grand slams and 15 RBIs.
Pitcher Kelvin Herrera also was promoted to Omaha after a 4-0 record, seven saves and a 1.75 ERA with 40 strikeouts in 36 innings and 23 games for Northwest Arkansas. Earlier this summer, he was 2-1 with a save and a 0.61 ERA in eight games for Class A Wilmington.
To make room on the Omaha roster, catcher Manny Pina (.241, 16 RBIs) and pitcher Mario Santiago (3-3, 5.70 ERA) were sent to Northwest Arkansas.
Left-hander Noel Arguelles, who signed a deal worth nearly $7 million in 2010, apparently has fully recovered from shoulder surgery. He came just short of a seven-inning no-hitter on Tuesday for Wilmington's Blue Rocks.
After 6 1/3 no-hit innings, he gave up two hits and two runs, although Wilmington eventually won in the eighth, 4-3. Overall, Arguelles is 3-4 with a 2.89 ERA in 18 starts after not pitching last season.
Berroa latches on with D-backs' farm club
BOSTON -- Former American League Rookie of the Year Angel Berroa has joined the Arizona Diamondbacks' organization. He made his debut for Triple-A Reno in Tuesday night's 10-5 win over Las Vegas.
The shortstop was the AL's top rookie for the Royals in 2003 and played for them until '07. He last played in the Major Leagues for the Yankees and the Mets in '09.
This year, Berroa was playing in the independent Atlantic League, batting .263 with six home runs and 33 RBIs in 64 games for the Bridgeport Bluefish.
The D-backs sought infield depth after shortstop Stephen Drew was injured and went on the disabled list. Reno's Cody Ransom was called up to take Drew's spot on the Arizona roster.
Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.