Reports out of Kansas City are now saying that Royals catcher Salvador Perez is likely going to need Tommy John surgert to repair a UCL in his right elbow, putting him on the shelf until next season before this one has even started.
Breaking: Tommy John surgery has been recommended for Royals star catcher Salvador Perez. He is expected to have the surgery next week, and would be back for the 2020 season.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) March 2, 2019
So what does that mean for Boston? Red Sox president Dave Dombrowski has been transparent about his desire to have just two catchers on the Major League roster for Opening Day, and Christian Vazquez is the odds-on favorite to start behind the dish. That leaves Blake Swihart, whose agent requested a trade last season, and Sandy Leon, who hit just .177 last season, as potential trade candidates.
The Royals' depth after Perez, meanwhile, is lagging. The two catchers behind Perez in camp, Cam Gallagher and Meibrys Vitoria, have a combined 59 career at bats to their name. 2017 second-round pick M.J. Melendez, the No. 6 ranked prospect in the Royals' system by Baseball America, is the presumed long-term solution at catcher. But he's only gotten as far as Class-A in his second year as a pro.
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