KANSAS CITY -- When the Royals announced that second baseman Johnny Giavotella underwent hip surgery last Thursday, it came as a surprise because there had been no outward indication of any injury.
"It actually surprised me, too," Giavotella said as he recuperated in New Orleans where he lives, "because the pain was constant but it wasn't too bad to where I thought something was torn. But it was just one of those things where I could get it fixed and get it out of the way."
Giavotella, a rookie who was brought up on Aug. 5, played through the end of the season and finished strong, with a .375 average in his last eight games.
"My groin had been hurting probably the last two, three weeks of the season and I just played through it," he said.
However, the Royals' exit physical examination revealed a slight labral tear in his right hip, and he went to Dr. Marc Philippon, a Vail, Colo., specialist who had operated on Royals teammate Alex Gordon and Yankees star Alex Rodriguez among others.
"He should be fine," Royals general manager Dayton Moore said. "It wasn't nearly as serious as what Alex Gordon went through. Same type of surgery but not nearly as intrusive."
Giavotella said he's feeling great and expects to be swinging a bat and throwing by the end of December and ready to go full-bore in January, in plenty of time for the start of Spring Training in February.
"Dr. Philippon said it was a very slight tear in the labrum and the labrum doesn't repair itself, so we had to go in and fix it," Giavotella said. "It's only going to take two months to get back where we need it to be and three months to where it'll be 100 percent and I'll be going out and playing like I usually do."
There wasn't any specific incident that caused the problem.
"It was just kind of wear and tear and overuse from a long season, and I look forward to getting it out of the way and being ready to start it up," Giavotella said.
No multi-year deal for Melky in the works
KANSAS CITY -- General manager Dayton Moore was very pleased about center fielder Melky Cabrera's bounceback season but doesn't see a long-term deal coming out of it immediately.
"We'll probably go a year at a time at this point, but he was a terrific player for us and we're very proud of what he accomplished and we'd be very open to Melky being here long term," Moore said. "But I don't see anything right now. I think he's at a point in his career where he wants to look at things. He's just a year away from free agency."
Cabrera, who had a team-high 201 hits with a .305 average and 18 homers, was signed as a free agent last season but he was on the open market only because the Braves unconditionally released him after a lackluster season. He's still under the Royals' control for 2012 but, as Moore suggests, he probably wants to test free agency. That also would give him great incentive for another big season.
Of course, the chance that he might leave after 2012 also puts him in the position of being a possible trade piece for the Royals while they can still get something for him.
Meanwhile, Cabrera, eligible for salary arbitration this year for the last time, is certain to get a big jump from his $1.25 million in 2011.
Myers tearing it up in Arizona Fall League
KANSAS CITY -- Right fielder Wil Myers is having a hot time in the Arizona Fall League. When he went 3-for-5 in Surprise's 8-6 victory over Mesa on Tuesday, he raised his average to .396 and he boosted his RBI total to 12 in 13 games.
Not only that but former catcher Myers, a right-handed batter, had drawn 14 walks for a .532 on-base percentage.
On the other hand, three other Royals outfielders were off to slow starts elsewhere in winter ball. Jarrod Dyson was hitting .227 and Lorenzo Cain .212 in Venezuela and David Lough was at .189 in the Dominican Republic.
Only a few days left in Gordon auction
KANSAS CITY -- Time is running out for the online auction being held by the Royals and Alex Gordon to benefit the Diamond Dawgs, a youth team from Lincoln, Neb., and the American Cancer Society.
The auction featuring autographed items by Gordon and teammates Billy Butler, Jeff Francoeur and Luke Hochevar will close at 5 p.m. CT on Monday, marking the end of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
The Diamond Dawgs have lost the mothers of two team members to cancer. Gordon is supporting their effort to raise funds for cancer research and to participate in a tournament next summer at Cooperstown, N.Y., site of the Baseball Hall of Fame.
The four Royals players and hitting coach Kevin Seitzer will appear at a fund-raising Pink Casino Night on Nov. 19 at The Lodge at Wilderness Ridge in Lincoln. Former University of Nebraska players and present Major Leaguers Joba Chamberlain, Brian Duensing and Tony Watson also are scheduled to attend. For information or to donate, go to www.crowdrise.com/playingforpink.
New Royals pitching coach Dave Eiland on his view of pitch counts:
"You do count pitches, but you also have to teach guys how to pitch into the seventh, eighth and ninth inning and to finish games. That's one of the things we're going to do. I want all my starters to be on the mound when they play 'Take Me Out to the Ball Game' at the seventh-inning stretch."
Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.