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Royals call up outfielder Dairon Blanco

Michael A. Taylor is out due to COVID-19 protocols

Kansas City Royals Photo Day Photo by Kelsey Grant/Getty Images

The Royals have selected the contract of outfielder Dairon Blanco from Triple-A Omaha and have placed Michael A. Taylor on the Injured List. Taylor was a late scratch from Wednesday’s game and Lynn Worthy reports he was out due to COVID-19 protocols for contact tracing. Because Taylor is out for COVID-19 reasons, a 40-man roster move is not necessary to add Blanco.

The 29-year old Cuban outfielder was acquired from the Athletics in 2019 in a trade for pitcher Jake Diekman. The right-handed hitter brings plus speed with 13 steals in 31 games for Triple-A Omaha, and an ability to draw walks with 17 free passes. He was hitting .263/.381/.442 with five home runs for the Storm Chasers, and hit .277/.350/.441 with 14 home runs and 41 steals in 117 games across Double-A and Triple-A last year. Blanco defected from Cuba in 2016 at the age of 23 after playing several years in the professional leagues there.

There is no word on how long Taylor is expected to be out, and it could be just a matter of a day or two if he tests negative and/or is asymptomatic. In the meantime, Kyle Isbel could get some more playing time - he got the start in place of Taylor last night and is in the lineup again this afternoon. Taylor was hitting .238/.333/.337 with two home runs in 33 games, but a career-high walk rate of 12.8%.