Royals star C Salvador Perez (knee) undergoes MRI

Sun Jun 16 6:08pm ET
Field Level Media

Kansas City Royals star catcher Salvador Perez was not in the starting lineup for Saturday's game against the host Los Angeles Dodgers due to a right knee injury.

Perez, 34, underwent an MRI exam Saturday and no structural damage was detected.

"I didn't know what to think," Royals manager Matt Quatraro told reporters before Saturday's game. "He's so tough, you never know. But the fact that he's day-to-day and not going on the (injured list) is a big help for us."

Kansas City recalled catcher Austin Nola from Triple-A Omaha to provide catching insurance. Freddy Fermin started Saturday's game and is batting in the No. 5 spot in the lineup.

Perez, an eight-time All-Star, exited Friday's 4-3 loss to the Dodgers in the eighth inning due to the injury. He was injured in the fourth inning while blocking a pitch and said he felt immediate pain.

"Maybe my spike got stuck a little bit," Perez told reporters after Friday's game. "I went (through) the next couple of innings and tried to feel better, but it got worse after three or four more innings. So I decided to talk to (head athletic trainer Kyle Turner). Sometimes you feel something, you keep going for a couple more innings and it goes away."

Perez is batting .297 with 11 homers and 45 RBIs in 69 games this season. The five-time Gold Glove winner has 257 career homers and 857 RBIs in 1,463 games since reaching the majors with the Royals in 2011.

Nola was batting just .100 (6-for-60) in 20 games for Omaha. He has a .249 career average in 345 major league games with the Seattle Mariners (2019-20) and San Diego Padres (2020-23). He batted just .146 in 52 games for San Diego last season.

Fermin is batting .294 with two homers and 13 RBIs in 41 games this season.

Kansas City optioned left-hander Anthony Veneziano to Omaha to open a roster spot for Nola. Veneziano has a 4.50 ERA in two appearances with the Royals this season.

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