The Kansas City Royals have optioned right-hander Colorado native Luke Hochevar to Triple-A Omaha, increasing the chances Sidney Ponson will fill a slot in the starting rotation.
Hochevar, who grew up in Lamar, Wiley and Fowler was the first player picked in the 2006 draft, had a 3.86 ERA in five spring training games, allowing 17 hits and four walks in 16 1-3 innings. He was 6-12 with a 5.51 ERA in 22 starts for Kansas City last season after starting the year with Omaha.
Kansas City announced the move on Tuesday.
The Royals signed Ponson to a minor league contract on March 17 after he pitched well for the Netherlands in the World Baseball Classic.