KANSAS CITY, MO (November 20, 2020) – The Kansas City Royals announced today that they have selected left-handed pitchers Daniel Tillo and Angel Zerpa, catcher Sebastian Rivero and outfielder Khalil Lee to the 40-man roster, ahead of tonight’s reserve list deadline. In corresponding moves, the Royals have designated right-handed pitcher Glenn Sparkman and left-handed pitcher Gabe Speier for assignment, while right-handed pitcher Chance Adams was sent outright to Triple-A.
Lee, 22, was an invite to Major League spring training in 2020. He was named the George Brett Minor League Hitter of the Year and Northwest Arkansas (AA) Player of the Year in 2019, after leading the Texas League in walks (65) and steals (53). The left-handed hitter spent last season at the Royals alternate training site. He was originally selected in the third round of the 2016 First-Year Player Draft.
Rivero, 22, has participated in Major League spring training the last two seasons. In 2019, he split the year between Wilmington (A+) and Omaha (AAA), appearing in a combined 94 games and posting a .981 fielding percentage, while throwing out 20-of-50 would-be base stealers. The 2018 South Atlantic League All-Star participated at the Royals alternate training site in 2020. He was originally signed as an international free agent on July 10, 2015.
Tillo, 24, was also an invite to Major League spring training in 2020 and participated at the Royals alternate training site during the season. He split 2019 between Wilmington and Northwest Arkansas, posting an 8-9 record with a 3.72 ERA (54 ER in 130.2 IP) in 23 starts (29 appearances). He was originally selected in the third round of the 2017 First-Year Player Draft.
Zerpa, 21, spent most of his 2019 campaign with Burlington (Rookie), also making one start at Idaho Falls (Rookie). He went a combined 6-3 with a 3.40 ERA (21 ER in 55.2 IP) and 55 strikeouts (8.89 K/9). He was the winning pitcher for Burlington in Game 1 of the 2019 Appalachian League Semifinals, tossing 5.0 scoreless innings with seven strikeouts. The left-hander was originally signed as an international free agent on July 26, 2016.
Following today’s transactions, the Royals have 40 players on their 40-man roster.