Kansas City, MO (SportsNetwork.com) - The Kansas City Royals acquired
outfielder Norichika Aoki from the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for left-
handed pitcher Will Smith on Thursday.
Aoki, 31, batted .286 with eight home runs, 37 RBI and 20 stolen bases for
Milwaukee in 2013.
He ranked second in the majors with 40 infield hits, led the National League
in singles (140) and hit .339 against left-handed pitching, the top average by
a left-handed hitter in the majors.
Prior to joining the Brewers two years ago, Aoki played eight seasons with the
Tokyo Yakult Swallows of the Japanese Central League. He hit .329 with 84
homers, 385 RBI and 164 stolen bases during his career in Japan.
Smith, 24, went 2-1 with a 3.24 ERA in 19 appearances, all but one as a
reliever, for the Royals last season.
"Will Smith is someone we have liked for a couple of years now," said Brewers
GM Doug Melvin. "We had the chance to acquire a 24-year-old big, physical
left-hander who we feel can be a part of our staff. We could not walk away
from the opportunity."
He has spent parts of the past two seasons with Kansas City, going 8-10 with a
4.76 ERA in 35 games, 17 of them starts. He is 6-10 with a 5.48 ERA as a
starter and 2-0 with a 2.45 ERA as a reliever.
The Sports Network