Royals sign Hanser Alberto to minor league deal

The Kansas City Royals added one of baseball’s premier lefty mashers on Sunday night, signing infielder/outfielder Hanser Alberto to a minor league deal.

Alberto, 28, is a contact-oriented right-handed hitter and has a .278 career batting average with a .678 OPS over five seasons split between the Texas Rangers and Baltimore Orioles. In recent seasons, though, he’s been absolutely dominant against left-handed pitching, hitting .394 with a .942 OPS while facing southpaws in 2019-20. His .375 average against lefties was tied for ninth in the majors last season.

Despite his emergence as an offensive threat, the Orioles non-tendered Alberto in December rather than offering him arbitration. While his contract with the Royals is not guaranteed, he seemingly will head into spring training with a solid chance to form a platoon with left-handed hitting Nicky Lopez at second base. He’s played every position except center field and catcher at the major league level and is capable at filling in all over the field if a need pops up in the Royals’ lineup.

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