Trading Places: Sal Perez, Kelvin Herrera Promoted to Omaha

Little by little, the Royals are working their best young minor leaguers closer to the majors. Today, two potential impact players were promoted to Omaha.

Salvador Perez, the prospective catcher of the future, has made it to Triple A at the ripe age of 21 years old.  Perez, considered an elite defensive talent, threw out 43 of 90 potential base stealers in Northwest Arkansas in 2011.  He has a career 43% success rate in the minors in limited would-be thieves.

Kelvin Herrera, who was in the All-Star Futures game at the All-Star Break, has a 52/8 K/BB ratio in 50.2 innings pitched out of the bullpen.

Herrera, also 21, has a 1.42 ERA in two levels.  He was promoted from Wilmington earlier this year.

To make room for the two, Mario Santiago and Manuel Pina were sent from Omaha to Northwest Arkansas.  Santiago has had a rough year in Triple A and Pina, who’s on the 40 man roster, put up a .738 OPS in Omaha.  He’s more of a defensive catcher and may have been sent down to get regular work and have influence on Double A pitchers.

Perez has been on fire since the All-Star break, with a .333/.374/.571 line and five homers in 22 games.  He’s hit .405/.463/.703 in his last ten games and hit a grand slam on Sunday and again on Tuesday.

What it means for the Royals is that Perez has a very good shot to be the every day catcher next year, despite his age.  The only question will be his bat, as he’s a natural (no pun intended) behind the plate.  He was our #20 prospect entering the year, and his progress will have him jump up those rankings next year.

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Tags: AL Central Baseball Kansas City Royals KC Kelvin Herrera Manuel Pina Mario Santiago MLB Royals Salvador Perez

  • jim fetterolf

    As I remember, Matt Treanor is an FA after this season, so do the Royals keep Brayan Pena for his bat and experience and bring up Perez to begin next year and start working into full time duty? Perez has shown some split issues against righties and Pena is a switch hitter whose defense is much improved.

    As for Kelvin Herrera, if he progresses that should make the decision to move Crow or Holland to the rotation a little easier.

  • michael.allen.engel

    @jim fetterolf I’ve always felt that Pena wasn’t given a fair shot last year and I think his upside to develop into SOMETHING could be good to have. I have a feeling they resign Treanor and let Pena go though…just how front offices seem to work, Treanor’s weak bat or not.

  • jim fetterolf

    @michael.allen.engel I think they keep Pena for the bat and splits, although Treanor has that high OBP, which they like. Treanor has had a decent year, so may get an offer from somebody.

  • jim fetterolf

    @michael.allen.engel What do you think about Herrera? Have heard that he has control, can pump in strikes, but doesn’t always have command. Got that from Rany, I think.

    Been hearing anything on Montgomery and long-toss? I thought he had turned his season around, then the wheels fell off again. If you have sources, that would be a good story. I suspect that it is a wider problem within the Royals’ system than just Monty.

    Good work, appreciate the effort.