Kansas City Royals' Joey Gathright, right, celebrates with manager Trey Hillman after scoring on a fielding error by Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Jered Weaver during the second inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Wednesday, April 16, 2008. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)
T-Bones sign former Royals outfielder Gathright; trade Sadler
KANSAS CITY, Kan. – The Kansas City T-Bones announced that they have signed former Major League outfielder Joey Gathright and traded Ray Sadler to Winnipeg.
Gathright, 32, has played in 452 Major League games with four clubs: Tampa Bay, Kansas City, the Chicago Cubs and Boston. The majority of those games (258) were spent with the Royals during 2006-08. In 2007, he batted .307 in 74 games. He has 309 hits and 81 stolen bases during his time in the big leagues. Gathright, who’s known as a centerfielder but has played all three outfield spots, has a .989 fielding percentage at the Major League level.
Last season, Gathright split time between Bridgeport of the independent Atlantic League and Louisville, the triple-A affiliate for the Cincinnati Reds. Overall, he batted .263 with 107 hits, including 16 doubles, 34 RBIs and 18 stolen bases.
“He gives us a guy with a lot of Major League experience along with a different presence on the field and in our clubhouse,” said T-Bones manager Kenny Hook. “This also gives us another player at the top of the lineup who can run and is a good contact hitter.”
Gathright is expected to be in uniform tonight as the T-Bones begin a four-game homestand at CommunityAmerica Ballpark against Sioux Falls. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.
To make room on the roster for Gathright, the T-Bones traded Sadler to Winnipeg for a player to be determined. Earlier this season, Sadler got his 1,500th career hit and played his 300th career game with Kansas City. In 41 games this season, Sadler is batting .218 with 10 home runs.
“Ray has done tremendous things for our organization and I’m grateful for that and our personal relationship,” Hook said. “This was very difficult for both of us, but sometimes a change of scenery can be best for the player and help our club turn things around.”