Royals catcher Nick Dini and pitcher Daniel Tillo have tested positive, according to MLB.com beat writer Jeffrey Flanagan after both player gave permission to release their names. Dini is the third Royals catcher to test positive, joining Salvador Perez and Cam Gallagher, although Perez was cleared to rejoin the team earlier this week. Catcher Meibrys Viloria has also been out for undisclosed reasons, but is expected to rejoin the team soon. First baseman Ryan O’Hearn and pitcher Brad Keller also tested positive last week.
Tillo was considered a long-shot to make the roster this year as a left-handed reliever, but put himself on the radar after an impressive performance in the Arizona Fall League. The former third-round pick out of Sioux City, Iowa had a 3.72 ERA with 85 strikeouts in 130 2⁄3 innings across High-A and Double-A last year. He also suffered some more bad news today when an MRI revealed damage to his ulnar collateral ligament in his elbow, an injury that usually requires Tommy John surgery. Tillo is still awaiting a second opinion on that injury.
Dini was competing for a spot as the backup catcher and was a candidate to begin the season on the roster if Gallagher’s status was still uncertain. The 26-year old hit .196/.270/.357 in 20 games with the Royals last year.
MLB announced the latest round of coronavirus test results, with just six positive results out of 10,548 samples in the past week, five of which were players.