Kansas City Royals: Reviewing debut seasons for top 2017 draft picks
RHP, Tyler Zuber, sixth round, pick No. 180, Arkansas State
It’s fair to say Tyler Zuber had a rough go of it in his limited time with Lexington in 2017. It’s also fair to point out that the right-hander only pitched three times at the Low-A level. And finally, it’s fair to say if he replicates his performances from Burlington, where he spent the majority of his first professional season, Zuber has a chance to be an intriguing bullpen option going forward.
A sixth-round pick out of Arkansas State, Zuber went six-for-six in save opportunities with the Royals’ Appalachian League affiliate. In total, the 22-year-old tossed 25 innings over 16 relief appearances with Burlington. Prior to his promotion, Zuber had a solid 1-0 record, 2.16 ERA and 1.32 WHIP. While his .265 batting average against is higher than you would like, he made up for it with a stellar 38:7 strikeout-to-walk ratio.
Things went downhill quickly once Zuber arrived in Lexington, though. He only pitched 2 1/3 innings, but he allowed just one fewer run than he did in Burlington. Despite getting hit hard in two of his performances — he had one scoreless outing, Zuber didn’t allow a single home run during his combined 27 1/3 frames. Ideally, an entire season with Lexington will allow the 5-foot-11, 175-pound Zuber to come closer to matching his numbers from Burlington. Although, it’s possible a realistic expectation would fall somewhere in between.