Baseball America’s Prospect Handbook for 2011 won’t be out for a couple of months yet, but they’ve been providing a run down of the top ten prospects within each system this month. Today, we learned their assessment of the Royals.
Crediting a “willingness to spend large amounts of money in the draft and a solid player-development system” the Royals enjoy the deepest and most talented minor league system in baseball. This distinction was one that Royals fans who follow the minors has been expecting since somewhere around May or June, but the validation feels good, doesn’t it?
In what must have been a difficult decision, Eric Hosmer was selected as the top prospect in the Royals system.
The Royals top ten contains five pitchers and five position players, so that’s a nice balance. The top three are Hosmer, third baseman Mike Moustakas and catcher Wil Myers. Interestingly, Baseball America’s 2014 projected lineup places Myers in right field with Savador Perez behind the plate.
John Lamb, Mike Montgomery, Danny Duffy and Chris Dwyer – all lefthanded pitchers – are the top pitching prospects, with Aaron Crow, the lone righty, listed as the fifth of the group. The fourth overall pick of the 2010 draft, shortstop Christian Colon, and second round pick outfielder Brett Eibner round out the top ten.
BA also lists a few names we don’t hear much about since they’re still far down in the rookie levels of the minor league system, but should make waves in 2011. Yordano Ventura possesses the best fastball in the system according to BA and the best defensive player in the Royals minor leagues is Humberto Arteaga who’d only signed with the Royals last August.
The Royals currently have an embarassment of riches as a case could be made for any of five players to be the top prospect in the system. Moustakas is closest to the majors after leading the minor leagues in homers last year. Myers has perhaps the highest upside of any player the Royals have. Montgomery is a year removed from being the top prospect last season, only derailed by some arm issues this season and Lamb rocketed through three levels of professional baseball in 2010.
Also, a warning to 2011 Texas League teams: all five of the top pitching prospects on the list are projected to start the year in Double A at Northwest Arkansas. Good luck.
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Tags: Aaron Crow AL Central Baseball Brett Eibner Chris Dwyer Christian Colon Eric Hosmer Humberto Arteaga John Lamb Kansas City Royals KC Mike Montgomery Mike Moustakas MLB Royals Wil Myers Yordano Ventura