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Sveum takes over as Royals' hitting coach

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Updated: 5/29 2:57 pm

Toronto, ON (SportsNetwork.com) - Former major league manager Dale Sveum will be the Kansas City Royals' new hitting coach as part of a staff shakeup the team announced Thursday.

Sveum, who had been serving as Kansas City's third base coach in his first year with the organization, replaces Pedro Grifol, with the latter assigned to a catching instructor role.

Mike Jirschele will assume third base coaching duties beginning with Thursday's game at Toronto.

The Royals have been among the worst offensive teams in the majors this season, having hit a league-low 21 home runs and standing last in the American League in runs scored (197) and on-base plus slugging percentage (.654).

Grifol had been Kansas City's hitting coach since July of last season.

Sveum joined Ned Yost's staff with the Royals in October, three days after being fired as manager of the Chicago Cubs. He went 134-202 over two seasons in Chicago.

The 50-year-old previously worked as the hitting coach of the Milwaukee Brewers from 2009-11.

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