Mar 18, 2013; Surprise, AZ, USA; Kansas City Royals second baseman Johnny Giavotella (9) swings at a pitch during the fifth inning against the Texas Rangers at Surprise Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Johnny Giavotella May Be On His Last Chance

Sep 5, 2013; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Royals second baseman Johnny Giavotella (9) warms up before the game against the Seattle Mariners at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

The Kansas City Royals have been seemingly in search of a second baseman since the days of Alberto Callaspo in 2009. Although Mike Aviles performed well when he was given a chance the following year, but the Royals never really seemed to believe in his ability to produce at the levels he had. Now, heading into the offseason, the Royals still find themselves potentially in need of a second baseman.

As well as Emilio Bonafacio played in the last six weeks of the season last year, he has proven to be more of a utility player than an every day second baseman. In fact, Bonafacio seems to thrive in that role, and may be likely to resume that next season. Therefore, it appears as though the Royals are likely to look towards free agency to fill that void in their lineup.

However, there may have been an internal option for the Royals. Despite there appearing to be an opening at second, Johnny Giavotella has yet to perform well enough to take advantage of his opportunities. Unlike like Aviles before him, Giavotella has yet to do anything to force the Royals to carve a spot for him on the roster.

At that point, it would appear as though Giavotella has anything left to prove in the Pacific Coast League. Over the past three seasons for the Omaha Storm Chasers, Giavotella has produced at a .317/.388/.456 rate, making it seem as though he would be ready to produce for Kansas City. However, when given the chance, Giavotella has underwhelmed, producing a .240/.278/.335 batting line. Even more disappointing has been his lack of power, with only three home runs. Giavotella has also struggled with plate discipline, walking only 19 times in 424 plate appearances.

Although Giavotella is only going to be 26 years old heading into the 2014 season, it may be fair to wonder if he will ever prove to be more than a potential AAAA player. With Christian Colon on the cusp of possibly becoming a factor for the Royals, time may be running out for Giavotella to make an impact upon the Royals.

As a former second round draft choice, there were reasonably high hopes that Johnny Giavotella could be the future at second base for the Royals. Now, just six years later, he may be fighting for his baseball future.


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  • jimfetterolf

    I expect Gio to be a throw-in on a trade. Omaha will have Colon and probably Rey Navarro and still has Tony Seratelli and Irving Falu, which is why Gio ended up in left-field. He had four chances and two or three spring trainings. He looks like Kila v2.0 but may thrive elsewhere, but a guy who couldn’t beat out Chris Getz doesn’t have much rope left with the Royals.

    I’m good with Bonifacio and hoping Colon continues his late improvements at Omaha. I’ve seen it suggested that Mark Ellis is in play and could live with that. Just too big a crowd to even consider Gio. Too bad, like the kid, but not everybody makes it.

    • Dave Hill

      For a while, I thought that he was going to be the second coming of Mike Aviles, a guy that forced his way into the lineup. Then he just couldn’t do anything with his chances. But, like you said, not everyone makes it.

  • chiefridgy

    Giov never was given enough at bats to prove himself. You need around 2000 plate appearances to get a true idea.

  • Eric Akers

    I agree that he was never given enough of a chance to say that he can’t make it. I hope he has a great spring this year and forces his way into a starting role. Even if he does, I don’t think they will stick with him if he struggles a bit.

  • hemroid

    Unfortunately for Gio, his chances to wear the KC Logo in major league baseball games is probably over. He has stunk it up every opportunity he has been given. Granted he was probably never given a real shot, it was nonetheless a shot at proving something, anything. I was on Johnny G.’s bandwagon, he had to be better than Getz. Wrong, I was wrong as were many that pulled for Johnny G. I think he is just another in a long line of AAAA Kansas City farmhands. Good luck Johnny, I wish you the best.