One of the best ways to be noticed as a prospect is to show a talent that is in short supply on the major league club. With the Royals seemingly in need of a power bat, despite the raw power of Mike Moustakas, showing an ability to hit home runs could potentially lead to a long look down the line. For Brian Fletcher, that could eventually be his ticket to Kansas City.
Fletcher may not have the power potential that Moustakas, or even Eric Hosmer displayed in the minors, but he has shown a bit of pop. His home runs have increased over each season in the minors, with a high of seventeen last season. While that number may not appear to be impressive, his power increased dramatically in the hitter friendly Pacific Coast League, where he hit five home runs in just under a month of action.
While Brian Fletcher has a bit of a power stroke, he also brings more to the table than an ability to hit home runs. Throughout his career, Fletcher has produced a .294/.349/.488 batting line with a bit of speed, stealing 24 bases and hitting 71 doubles.
Although he had not been a good defensive outfielder, Fletcher has made progress there as well. While he is likely never to be considered for a Gold Glove award, Fletcher has gone from being a calamity in the outfield to being a solid defensive player.
Since being drafted in the 18th round back in 2010, Brian Fletcher has skyrocketed through the system, moving up two levels in each of the past two seasons. Chances are, the 25 year old outfielder will begin the 2014 season back in Omaha. Although he has only played one game anywhere aside from left field, Fletcher could potentially spend some time in right field in an attempt to gain versatility.
If Fletcher does spend time in right and can perform well there, he could potentially develop into a fourth outfielder with a bit of power, similar to what the Royals presently have in Justin Maxwell. Fletcher could also potentially see at bats as a designated hitter, especially if Billy Butler departs at some point.
Brian Fletcher may not be a star in the majors, but he could fill a valuable role as a right handed power bat off the bench or as a fourth outfielder. Being able to locate a player like that in the minor leagues, instead of having to acquire one in a trade or as a free agent, is certainly beneficial.