The Kansas City Royals fan base seems to be counting a player out before he can truly show what he can do. Don’t count Adalberto Mondesi out just yet, though.
When the Kansas City Royals signed Adalberto Mondesi, expectations were high. He was thought to be the next superstar that the Royals had within the system, he just needed to continue developing. However, when the Royals signed him back in 2011, he was a 16-year-old prospect out of the Dominican Republic. So the developmental process was going to take a long time.
After being called up during the Royals 2015 World Series run, expectations started exploding
about this 20-year-old the Royals decided to put on their 25-man roster.
When Mondesi got his first real regular season chance in 2016 to make an impact for the Royals, the 20-year-old was less than impressive. Offensively he hit .181/.231/.281 after 47 games before being sent back to Omaha.
In 2017, Mondesi got a second try at breaking through at the MLB level. Over the next 25 games to start the season Mondesi slashed an even worse .170/.214/.245 before being sent back to Omaha.
Over his career, Mondesi has a horrible .181/.226/.271 slash over 72 games. At face value, that doesn’t look good.
So why should we not lose hope on Mondesi yet?
First off, he’s only 22-years-old. Not many players make their MLB debut before the age of 21 and even less make their debut at the age of 19 or 20. Since 2010, Mondesi is 1-of-115 players to make their MLB debut age 21 or lower.
Of those 115 to make their debut, 31 are no longer on their respected big league roster.
In fact, according to an article on USA Today, the average player’s age in the MLB is a few ticks away from 29-years-old. In another article from 2016, they found that the average age of an MLB player making his debut is just over 24-years-old. That number is probably pretty close to the same now in 2018.
**According to Baseball Reference, since 2017, MLB has had 378 players make their debut and 178 are 23-years-old or younger.**
In fact, now that Mondesi has been called up, he is actually the 26th youngest player to make an appearance in the MLB this year.
My point? Not a lot of players make the jump as young as Mondesi did and stick around. In fact, over the last eight years, of the players 21 years and younger, a little over a fourth have been sent back down to develop more before being brought back up.