courtesy of Royals.com
3. Ken Harvey – 2004
Harvey was another player who put together an unforeseen performance in 2003, having appeared in four games in 2001 before becoming the Royals main first baseman as a rookie. However, unlike most of the other players on that year’s squad, Harvey was actually able to improve the following year. For the season, Harvey posted a .287/.338/421 batting line with 13 home runs.
While those overall numbers were not exactly stellar, Ken Harvey had a decent first half of the season, posting a .305/.353/.452 slash line with ten home runs as he was the Royals token representative that year. Yet, even that high batting average was inflated by a .345 batting average on balls in play. When his numbers fell back in the second half, Harvey actually wound up as under replacement level, posting a -0.2 WAR.
Harvey’s tale ended sadly, as he seemed as though he was making progress over his first two seasons to being a solid piece in the lineup. Instead, he found his career derailed by recurring back problems, appearing in only 12 major league games in 2005, the last time he appeared in the majors.