The Royals will add veteran reliever Seth Maness to the bullpen, according to Cardinals beat writer Derrick Goold. Maness spent the last four years with the Cardinals, posting a 3.19 ERA in 237 1/3 innings. The 28-year old right-hander was non-tendered last fall due to an elbow injury. The injury typically would have required Tommy John surgery, but Maness underwent an experimental procedure to reduce recovery time.
The surgery Maness had, called “primary repair,” doesn’t have the sexy name. It doesn’t have the brand recognition of Tommy John. But it also doesn’t have the lengthy recovery time of its famous forefather. It is a repair and buttressing of the existing ligament at the bone, not Tommy John’s reconstruction of the ligament.
Maness is a strike-thrower who doesn’t exhibit high velocity or great strikeout rates. He has walked 1.7 hitters-per-nine-innings in his career, and relies on getting groundouts, with a rate near 60% in his career. His throws a high-80s fastball with a sinker and changeup. Righties have hit just .269/.292/.393 off of him.
The Royals have not yet announced a corresponding roster move. They are currently carrying seven relievers, and used six in an extra-inning win over the Rays on Tuesday. Seth Maness would need to be added to the 40-man roster, which could require another player being designated for assignment.