Second baseman/ third baseman Daniel Mateo came in at number 28 in Baseball America‘s top 31 Kansas City Royals prospects heading into the 2012 season.
He broke out offensively in a big way in 2011 with short season Idaho Falls (he hit .348). The switch-hitter was viewed by BA to have little to no flaws on either side of the plate (in terms of his swing).
Mateo advanced to Low-A Kane County in 2012 and hit .262 with 20 doubles, ten triples, eight homeruns, 73 runs scored, and 61 RBIs. The downside was the strikeouts: 103 in 131 games.
He struggled mightily in the second half. After hitting .302 in the first half and being selected to play in the Midwest League All-Star Game, he hit just .220 after that.
Mateo’s downfall is his defense. He combined to commit 33 errors with the Cougars (19 at second base and 14 at third base). He is currently taking part in instructional league in Surprise, Arizona.
He may return to Low-A to start the 2013 season (with new affiliate Lexington) to harness his defense and get another taste of that level. Or with a solid spring training (and instructional league), he could move up a level to High-A Wilmington. I think it all depends on what happens at the higher levels and the trickle down effect that occurs.