2010 Top 20 Kansas City Royals Prospects in Review
Here is a review of the 2010 Royals prospect list, originally published October 30, 2009. THIS IS A REVIEW OF THE OLD LIST AND PRE-SEASON GRADES. THIS IS NOT A NEW LIST. The 2011 list and new grades won't be ready until the season is over and I start writing the book.
1) Mike Montgomery, LHP, Grade B+: Brilliant early at High-A Wilmington, and continued to pitch well after promotion to the Texas League. Has just rejoined Northwest Arkansas after rehab from a sore elbow. 1.88 ERA with a 65/15 K/BB in 62 innings on the season. He's great if he can stay healthy.
2) Mike Moustakas, 3B, Grade B: .347/.413/.687 in Double-A, .269/.274/.484 in Triple-A. I predicated a Texas League breakthrough two years ago and it happened. Power has blossomed, but strike zone judgment and sharp platoon splits are still issues. Appears to be in better condition than last fall in the Arizona Fall League.
3) Aaron Crow, RHP, Grade B: 5.66 ERA, 90/59 K/BB in 119 innings in Double-A, 130 hits. Was just demoted to High-A and gave up 10 hits and eight runs in his first start. No way to spin this season as anything positive.
4) Tim Melville, RHP, Grade B: 5.54 ERA with 74/45 K/BB in 89 innings for Wilmington, 85 hits. Went on the DL in mid-July with pectoral tendinitis although he had been pitching better lately.
5) Danny Duffy, LHP, Grade B: Quit baseball this spring for personal reasons, then changed his mind. Has made eight starts at four levels since then, with a combined 3.25 ERA with a 34/9 K/BB in 28 innings, 24 hits. Just promoted to Double-A.
6) Wil Myers, C, Grade B: Hitting .311/.430/.497 between Low-A Burlington and Wilmington, with 10 homers, 67 walks, 70 strikeouts in 334 at-bats, 10 steals. I absolutely love the bat, but his defense needs a lot of work.
7) Eric Hosmer, 1B, Grade B-: The laser surgery worked: .351/.423/.577 between High-A and Double-A, with excellent strike zone judgment. He's even stolen 13 bases in 14 attempts. This is the player the Royals thought they were getting in the 2008 draft.
8) Carlos Rosa, RHP, Grade B-: Traded to Arizona. 3.38 ERA with 23/17 K/BB in 27 Triple-A innings, 6.75 ERA with 8/9 K/BB in 13 major league innings. Command is still the big problem here.
9) David Lough, OF, Grade B-: .256/.318/.420 with 11 homers, 10 steals for Triple-A Omaha. Still impresses with his tools/athleticism, but unrefined with the bat.
10) John Lamb, LHP, Grade B-: 1.65 ERA with 137/33 K/BB in 120 innings at three levels, 91 hits. Has emerged as one of the best southpaw prospects in the game.
11) Noel Arguelles, LHP, Grade C+: Cuban defector has missed entire year with shoulder problems.
12) Jordan Parraz, OF, Grade C+: .266/.352/.415 for Omaha. I expected better.
13) Jeff Bianchi, INF, Grade C+: Lost season to Tommy John surgery.
14) Chris Dwyer, LHP, Grade C+: Another breakout guy, 3.00 ERA with 113/43 K/BB in 102 innings between Wilmington and NW Arkansas, with 90 hits allowed.
15) Kila Ka'aihue, 1B, Grade C+: Tremendous season in Omaha, .319/.463/.598, 24 homers, 88 walks, just 69 strikeouts. I love the power/walks/low strikeouts profile. Will they let him play?
16) Johnny Giavotella, 2B, Grade C+: .301/.373/.413 with 13 steals for NW Arkansas. Skilled contact hitter, could sneak up on people next year.
17) Louis Coleman, RHP, Grade C+: Fine year in Double-A and Triple-A, 2.25 ERA, 79/18 K/BB in 72 innings, 47 hits allowed. Can help in pen next year.
18) Tyler Sample, RHP, Grade C+: 4.15 ERA, 93/69 K/BB in 102 innings for Burlington, 80 hits. K/IP and H/IP are pretty good, walk rate is too high.
19) Tim Smith, OF, Grade C+: .299/.376/.448 for NW Arkansas. Distance power is to the gaps, but he controls the zone well.
20) Cole White, RHP, Grade C+: Out all year.
21) Blake Wood, RHP, Grade C: 5.61 ERA with 14/15 K/BB in 34 innings in the majors. I know he throws hard, but without more strikeouts he is just not going to be a very good pitcher.
What a great year for this system, with breakouts from Hosmer, Moustakas, Lamb, Dwyer, and Myers. Count Montgomery too if his elbow is OK. And Kilamonster continues to batter minor league pitching, though at age 26 he doesn't have the long-term upside of the others.