Kansas City Royals starting pitcher Michael Wacha throws against the...

Kansas City Royals starting pitcher Michael Wacha throws against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the third inning of a spring training baseball game, Thursday, March 14, 2024, in Scottsdale, Ariz. Credit: AP/Matt York

SURPRISE, Ariz. — Royals right-hander Michael Wacha was hit on his pitching hand during his final inning of spring training Sunday, just before the club was to leave Arizona, and will have X-rays on his middle finger to determine the extent of the injury.

Wacha was pitching in the fifth inning of an intrasquad game when Salvador Perez lined his pitch up the middle. The ball hit Wacha's right middle finger, and he immediately grabbed the hand as Royals manager Matt Quatraro came out to check on him.

Quatraro said he was optimistic that Wacha would be OK. The Royals are counting on him to fill out an almost entirely revamped rotation after signing the 32-year-old veteran to a $32 million, two-year contract during free agency.

Right-hander Seth Lugo, who signed a $45 million, three-year deal, threw 5 2/3 scoreless innings during the intrasquad game.

The injury to Wacha came one day after the Royals said second baseman Michael Massey likely would begin the season on the injured list. He began dealing with back tightness on Tuesday and has been held out of baseball activity, and he was expected to remain in Arizona while the club heads to Springdale, Arkansas, for an exhibition game Monday.

The Royals are playing their Double-A affiliate Northwest Arkansas before heading to Kansas City. They begin the regular season Thursday with the first of a three-game set against AL Central-rival Minnesota.

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