KANSAS CITY -- Frank White was a young second baseman with the Royals when Harmon Killebrew finished his Hall of Fame career with one final season with Kansas City in 1975. So White played with, as well as against, Killebrew, who passed away on Tuesday.
"I played against him when he was with the Twins, also, and watched him hit a few home runs," said White, now a Royals broadcaster. "I think I circled around one of his popups one night in Kansas City -- he hit them so high -- and I still haven't caught it. When he hit home runs, he hit them real high; he used a real skinny bat, a S-44, a real small bat.
"He was just a nice guy, a real professional guy. I remember he and Fran Healy used to hang out together after games, and they'd go get milkshakes every day. Just a pretty clean-cut guy. For a young guy, being around a veteran, he was an outstanding guy to ask for help, and he really helped me a lot."
In Kansas City, the only season he didn't play for Washington or Minnesota, Killebrew was the designated hitter and played 106 games, with 14 home runs, 44 RBIs and a .199 average.
"He just kind of fit right in," White said. "We brought him in as a DH to help the club, and just to watch him go about his business, he was very professional."
Bob McClure, now the Royals' pitching coach, was a rookie pitcher on that 1975 club with Killebrew.
"It was his last year and my first year," McClure recalled. "One day, he said, 'Bobby, come over here for a second.' So I went over, and he was real nice. He said, 'The first thing I want to suggest to you is never go into the training room.' This is 1975 and I really didn't understand what he was saying, because in the Minor Leagues, there really weren't any training rooms. So I asked, 'Why's that?' And I didn't even know where the training room was. And he said, 'Well, if you're in the training room and the trainer's working on you, and the manager sees you and then you don't pitch well and somebody's pitching pretty good at Triple-A, there's a good chance they'll bring him up, and you may never get your job back.' So back then, if [you] needed to put ice on your arm or something, you'd do it back in the hotel room. I remember not going in the training room for quite a few years."
McClure smiled at the memory of the big, friendly Killebrew.
"He used to ask me all the time, 'Hey, c'mon, kid, let's go out and have a milkshake,'" McClure said. "He was very kindhearted, and I was a little bit in awe of him. This was Harmon Killebrew. As good a player as he was, he was a finer man."
Adcock slated to start against Cardinals
KANSAS CITY -- Rookie Nate Adcock is the Royals' probable starting pitcher for Saturday afternoon's game against the Cardinals.
"We want to give Nate Adcock a shot at it," manager Ned Yost said on Tuesday.
Adcock would replace injured Kyle Davies in the rotation. Davies came out of Monday night's 19-1 loss to the Indians in the first inning with a shoulder ailment. He might be placed on the 15-day disabled list but the Royals have not yet made that move.
"We're still not there yet," Yost said. "He had his MRI, it showed inflammation, no structural damage. And we're still discussing how that's going to go."
A Rule 5 pick at the Winter Meetings, Adcock had never pitched above the Class A level until this year. So far he's worked in relief eight times with a 1-0 record and a 2.16 ERA although he's given up 19 hits including two homers in 16 2/3 innings.
He's exhibited a hard, sinking fastball.
"He throws strikes with a quality pitch. His secondary pitches aren't quite as good but he's got a good changeup, he's not afraid and he competes," Yost said. "Last night was a perfect example. He comes in with the bases loaded and strikes out Travis Hafner."
Adcock relieved Davies and got the big out on Hafner, then gave up a bloop two-run single to Orlando Cabrera. He faced another seven batters before giving way to Vin Mazzaro, who was hammered for 14 runs.
Yost figures that Adcock can be expected to throw 60 or 65 pitches on Saturday.
"He's done a nice job and he fits the profile of what we're trying to do," Yost said. "He's a young guy who's got upside -- let's take a look at him."
Teaford trucking his way into KC 'pen
KANSAS CITY -- For those fans who remember Everett Teaford's Spring Training adventure with his stolen pickup truck, here's the rest of the story.
Teaford has the diesel-powered Ford T-250 truck back. It was stripped, but was rescued from the Arizona desert and it's undergone body work, and is having the 4-wheel drive repaired. But it's still without a radio.
"We're still haggling with the insurance company, so I'm still riding around with my cell phone listening to Pandora," he said.
Teaford, called up from Triple-A Omaha when Vin Mazzaro was optioned to that club on Monday night, reported to the Royals before Tuesday night's game against the Indians.
Manager Ned Yost said that Teaford will be used in the bullpen, his assignment at Omaha after making three starts early in the season.
Teaford, who turned 27 on Sunday, considered the promotion a great gift.
"I really felt beside myself," Teaford said, "But, really, [Greg] Holland could've come up, [Jesse] Chavez could've come up. They were both throwing the ball great. So, I just felt more honored that I was the one selected when it could've been any of the three of us."
The difference was that Teaford is left-handed and Yost likes the idea of two lefties in relief, linking Teaford with Tim Collins.
"I think I'd use Teaford more in conjunction with Collins on left matchups, but he's not a situational lefty. He gets righties out," he said.
Teaford made a strong bid for the Major League roster in Spring Training but fell short and was optioned to Omaha.
"Even in Spring Training when I got sent down, I pitched a lot better -- it was like a monkey was lifted off my back because I put way too much pressure on myself and tried to do way too much, and thought way too much down the road rather than thinking one pitch at a time, one batter at a time," Teaford said.
Although, with the addition of Danny Duffy, he'll give the Royals nine rookies on their 25-man roster, Teaford is the oldest.
"I'm only 27. I know if I get a shave and a haircut, I'm a prospect," he said. "A real good one."
Tejeda faster, ready to pitch for Royals
KANSAS CITY -- Reliever Robinson Tejeda was back in the Royals' clubhouse on Tuesday, saying he was ready to pitch.
He's back from a five-game rehab tour with Triple-A Omaha in which he didn't allow an earned run in six innings. More important, the lost velocity on his fastball is returning.
"I've got some gasoline. Something's back. I'm excited," Tejeda said. "It was like 95, 96. Now I just need to be consistent and I think everything is going to be fine."
The Royals have not yet made an announcement on Tejeda's status.
Bloggers go behind the scenes at The K
KANSAS CITY -- Bloggers got an inside look at the Royals on Tuesday and they heard manager Ned Yost candidly admit that his sessions with the media were not his favorite part of the job.
"I try to do it in a professional manner and sometimes I'm a little gruff, but I try not to be," Yost told the eight bloggers in a private session. "Sometimes I am, but I'm working at it and I'm trying to be more understanding. I understand that they have a job they have to do."
The participating bloggers were the successful applicants for the Royals' "Blog Your Way to the K" experience. They were Jeffrey Zimmerman, Sean Nash, Eric Langhorst, Aaron Stilley, Kate Canterbury, Michael Engel, Jordan Sheat and Chris Kamler.
In addition to meeting with Yost, the bloggers watched his pregame session with the media, had access to batting practice, sat in a complimentary suite and had the chance to observe Yost's post-game meeting with reporters.
The Royals plan to hold at least one more behind-the-scenes session for bloggers. Watch Royals.com for details.
Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.