Sunday, July 22, 2007

KC's Billy Butler Latest to Win Daily Playing Time

Royals rookie Billy Butler -- who went 4-5 with a homer in his most recent outing -- is the latest, fresh young outfielder to lay claim -- however tenuous -- to everyday playing time.

Butler -- who starts at designated hitter -- has won favor with a better than .300 batting average and a slugging percentage approaching .500, all with a decent eye for the strikezone.

Butler stands to hold the job at least until battered veteran Mike Sweeney returns from the disabled list, which might not be for some time.

Other outfielders recently emerging with potential, permanent, full-time playing status in their sights include the Athletics Travis Buck, the Indians Franklin Gutierrez, the Rockies Ryan Spilborghs and the Pirates Ryan Doumit.

Keep an eye out for Shelley Duncan of the Yankees.