3/16/2014 8:50 P.M. ET
Royals deal Minor Leaguer Laird to Nationals
By Dick Kaegel / MLB.com
SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Minor league infielder Brandon Laird was traded to the Nationals by the Royals for a player to be named or cash.
Laird, 26, was a non-roster player in the Royals' Major League camp, but he was reassigned to the Minor Leagues last Monday after hitting .385 (5-for-13) in eight Cactus League games.
Primarily a corner infielder, he's played parts of three seasons in the Majors with the Yankees and Astros with a .197 average in 53 games. His older brother, Gerald Laird, is a catcher with the Braves.
Hochevar scheduled for Tommy John surgery
SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Pitcher Luke Hochevar said he'll have his Tommy John surgery on Tuesday in Los Angeles.
The surgeon for the procedure to repair the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow will be Dr. Neal ElAttrache.
Hochevar was injured on the second-to-last pitch of his first Cactus League outing on March 3 against the White Sox. He also had an elbow problem that kept him out 2 1/2 months in the 2010 season, but he came back without surgery that time.
Hochevar had hoped to return to the starting rotation this year after having a successful 2013 season pitching in relief. Now, he'll miss all of 2014.
Yost pleased with pitchers' efforts vs. Padres
PEORIA, Ariz. -- Royals manager Ned Yost saw more pitching pluses than minuses after a 10-inning, 9-6 Cactus League victory over the Padres on Sunday.
Starter Jason Vargas breezed through the first four innings without a run, but then gave up two homers in the Padres' three-run fifth inning. That ended a stretch of 13 innings in which Vargas had given up just one run.
"He got a couple pitches up in the fifth, but he threw the ball great," Yost said.
After Francisley Bueno threw a perfect sixth, Kelvin Herrera struggled in the seventh and was charged with three runs on two hits and two walks before Aaron Crow came to the rescue, although an error marred his effort.
"I thought Crow came in and did a great job. We got the double-play ball and didn't turn it," Yost said. "But that's exactly what we needed out of him with the bases loaded."
Herrera began his outing by giving up two singles.
"He gave up a hit on a high fastball, then got a changeup up and then two walks. But his last three or four outings have been real good," Yost said. "You go through these little stretches. You know they're not going to be perfect."
Wade Davis looked sharp with two strikeouts, making five in his last two innings. A triple hit against him was actually a missed deep fly ball by Jarrod Dyson in center field.
"He should have been out of that inning one-two-three, but this is Arizona, it's a high sun field and the ball carried farther than it does during the regular season. Dice catches that ball in the regular season 10 out of 10 times," Yost said.
Davis pitched the eighth inning and that setup spot might be his niche when the regular season begins.
"I've got a whole bullpen full of eighth-inning guys the way I see it," Yost said. "But is he probably the most prominent eighth-inning guy? Yeah. But when all conditions are right, [Tim] Collins, Crow, Herrera, [Louis] Coleman -- these guys can all pitch the eighth inning. That's what makes our bullpen so good."
Non-roster pitcher P.J. Walters got himself into a bases-loaded jam in the ninth but escaped unscathed. Minor League pitcher Spencer Patton worked a perfect 10th for the save.
"That last kid, Patton, looked really good," Yost said.
• The Royals-Rangers game on Monday night will be televised by FOX Sports Kansas City. A pregame show at 7:30 p.m. CT will precede game coverage at 8 p.m. After the game, there'll be a 30-minute special chronicling the goodwill trip to the Fort Bragg Army Base by Rex Hudler and other broadcasters and former players.
• It'll be a colorful showing for the Royals, who'll wear green jerseys in celebration of St. Patrick's Day.
• The Royals' only off-day of Spring Training will be on Tuesday and the camp should be completely quiet. Absolutely nothing is scheduled, not even any side sessions for pitchers. Word of the day: "Fore!"
Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.