1) Brett Eibner
Brett Eibner is 27-year-old, and thus is not perceived to have the upside of Jorge Bonifacio. But, he’s smashing the ball right now—including banging three home runs for AAA Omaha Thursday night.
However, what really impresses me about Eibner is his patience at the plate. He sports a .415 on base percentage to go with a .318 batting average and a .542 slugging percentage. Eibner has always shown a good eye at the plate throughout his career, and has 19 walks in 109 at bats this season.
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That’s a skill that the KC Royals could use on the big club.
Unfortunately, Eibner’s walks, home runs, and high batting average also comes with 28 strikeouts in 109 at bats. Like Jorge Bonifacio, his swing has some holes that major-league pitchers could presumably exploit. He’s still been productive nonetheless.
The Kansas City Royals drafted Brett Eibner in the second round of the 2010 draft from the University of Arkansas. Scouts knew that Eibner’s hit tool would be a project despite his athletic gifts as a defender in centerfield. One reason that Eibner was happy to get picked by the KC Royals organization is that they were interested in him as a position player. Other teams scouted him as a pitching prospect.
The benefit of calling up Eibner is that he’s both swinging a hot bat and could at least help the Kansas City Royals on defense in right.
Other possibles include Bubba Starling, but his average has crashed as he’s attempting to hit for more power in his age 23 season. He’s making progress, but he’s not major-league ready. Also in the mix is the hot hitting Hunter Dozier, who just earned a promotion to AAA.
Dozier has been a third baseman in his KC Royals career, but did play six games in left in 2015. Perhaps Dozier can transition to the outfield, but he would likely remain a liability on defense until he can put the time in to develop.
I doubt we see him playing outfield with the Kansas City Royals anytime soon.