Butler ready for however he can help in stretch

Butler ready for however he can help in stretch

CLEVELAND -- Billy Butler is pleased that manager Ned Yost anticipates using him in the lineup most of the way as the Royals' quest for a postseason spot goes down the stretch.

"We're into the last week and we'd have a playoff spot if the season ended today, and I'm just trying to contribute any way I can, if it's coming off the bench or playing," Butler said. "I've been a starter my whole career, so I'll be ready. I've always been ready."

Butler has been in and out of the lineup since he began struggling at the plate this season. He was the designated hitter in Monday night's regularly scheduled game against Indians starter Carlos Carrasco. Butler had a .412 average facing Carrasco.

"He's got a good average against all these guys," Yost said. "When you're struggling, you're struggling. But he's got the ability to hopefully get it going, and [Sunday] was a good start."

Butler had two hits in Sunday's 5-2 win over the Tigers and said he has the ability to put his previous troubles behind him.

"That's what a pro does. Whatever happened yesterday doesn't matter. Every day right now is a brand-new season," Butler said. "Our games are really important at this point. Each day is like a new beginning, you've just got to try to do something each night to help the team win."

Butler will get plenty of chances this week.

"You're just trying to find offense this time of year, and when you've got guys struggling in the middle of the order, it's especially big," Yost said. "We got guys at the top of the order swinging pretty good, and mixing in some offense at the bottom of the order. It's important to try to find somebody to pick up some run-scoring possibilities."

Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.