Royals promote No. 1 overall pick Hochevar to Class AAA Omaha

KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI (TICKER) -- The Kansas City Royals on Wednesday promoted righthander Luke Hochevar, the top overall selection in the 2006 draft, to Class AAA Omaha.

The 23-year-old Hochevar is 3-6 with a 4.69 ERA in 17 games with Class AA Wichita this season and leads the Texas League with 94 strikeouts. He is scheduled to make his Class AAA debut Sunday against Iowa.

A standout at the University of Tennessee, Hochevar started in the Texas League All-Star Game and recently tossed a scoreless inning for the U.S. team at the 2007 All-Star Futures Game.

The Royals claimed infielder Jason Smith off waivers from the Arizona Diamondbacks on Wednesday. In a corresponding move, the team designated infielder Fernando Cortez for assignment.

Smith is a career .228 hitter with 11 home runs and 44 RBI in 195 career games. He opened the season with the Toronto Blue Jays before being claimed off waivers by the Diamondbacks on May 16. Smith played in two games for Arizona before being sidelined with a burst appendix.

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