Viloria will be recalled from Double-A Northwest Arkansas on Tuesday, Lynn Worthy of The Kansas City Star reports.
Viloria made his big-league debut with the Royals a season ago, slashing .259/.286/.333 with four RBI over 10 games. After Kansas City traded away Martin Maldonado on Monday night, Viloria and Cam Gallagher figure to share the catching duties for the remainder of the 2019 campaign.
Viloria was optioned to Double-A Northwest Arkansas on Friday.
Viloria will unsurprisingly begin the season in the minors with Martin Maldonado and Cameron Gallagher serving as the Royals top two catching options in absence of Salvador Perez (elbow). GM Dayton Moore indicated shortly after signing Maldonado that Viloria still figures into the Royals' major-league plans for 2019.
Viloria remains part of Kansas City's plans for the 2019 season, Jeffrey Flanagan of MLB.com reports.
While Cameron Gallagher is slated to open the year as the backup catcher behind Martin Maldonado, the Royals haven't forgotten about Viloria, who figures to be up with the big-league team at various points throughout the season. "If (Viloria) goes down to the minor leagues and continues to swing the bat, he'll force our hand," stated general manager Dayton Moore. Viloria went 7-for-27 with two doubles and four RBI in the majors last season, and he'll only help his case if he's able to swing a hot bat at Triple-A Omaha, where he figures to begin the regular season.
Viloria (coach's decision) was removed from Sunday's lineup against the Twins because he was late arriving to the ballpark, Jeffrey Flanagan of MLB.com reports.
Viloria overslept and was late getting to the field, so manager Ned Yost benched Viloria for the day. Playing time figures to be hard to come by down the stretch of the regular season for the 21-year-old backstop, with Salvador Perez and Cameron Gallagher ahead of Viloria on the depth chart.
Viloria was scratched from the lineup Sunday against the Twins.
The reason for the scratch has not yet been given. Cameron Gallagher will replace him, batting ninth and catching.
Viloria was recalled from High-A Wilmington on Saturday, Jeffrey Flanagan of MLB.com reports.
Viloria makes the jump from High-A without yet touching Double-A or Triple-A as the Royals need some catching depth with Salvador Perez battling a thumb injury. Perez is expected to be unavailable for about a week, which should provide the 21-year-old a couple opportunities to start behind the plate. Viloria had a .260/.342/.360 slash line in 358 at-bats with the Blue Rocks this season.
Viloria was optioned to High-A Wilmington on Monday, Rustin Dodd of The Athletic Kansas City reports.
Viloria went 1-for-6 and scored a run in six spring training league games. He figures to start the year at High-A Wilmington after being dismissed from major-league camp.
Viloria was added to the Royals' 40-man roster on Monday to protect him from the Rule 5 draft.
The 20-year-old backstop clearly has the offensive chops to profile at the position, but at 5-foot-11, 175 pounds, there are many evaluators who don't think he will be able handle the defensive grind of being a big-league catcher. He hit .259/.313/.394 with eight home runs at Low-A last season after breaking out in rookie ball in 2016 (159 wRC+).
Viloria finished 2017, his first campaign out of rookie levels, with a .259/.313/.394 slash line over 101 games with Low-A Lexington.
The 20-year-old catcher popped eight home runs, logged 52 RBI and scored 42 runs over 363 at-bats. Among South Atlantic League catchers, Viloria finished second (behind Greenville's Roldani Baldwin) in nearly every fantasy-worthy stat category. The 2016 Pioneer League MVP, Viloria looks more than ready to jump up to High-A Wilmington when next season rolls around.
Viloria was named to MLBPipeline.com's Prospect Team of the Week after leading all MiLB players in OPS during the first week of May, Jim Callis of MLB.com reports.
After a slow first month with Low-A Lexington, the Royals' No. 9 prospect flipped a switch once the calendar turned. Viloria won the 2016 Pioneer League MVP after a breakout season in which he led the Rookie circuit in batting average (.376), doubles (28) and RBI (55). According to Rotowire's rankings, Viloria ranks second behind Chase Vallot among the organization's catching prospects, but that could change soon. While Viloria continues to dominate the lower levels, Vallot is slashing just .181/.316/.372 through 114 plate appearances with High-A Wilmington.
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