Kyle Isbel is without a doubt one of the most exciting prospects in the Kansas City Royals organization.
“I began playing baseball when I was two years old alongside my dad who taught me everything I know today,” Isbel said. “He brought me up through T-Ball, and I started playing travel ball when I was seven.”
Isbel was drafted by the third round of the 2018 MLB Draft by the Kansas City Royals out of UNLV. He was a three-year starter for the Rebels.
“It was a dream come true, I was blessed to be chosen by the Royals,” he said. “My time so far has been great, very family-oriented and a blast playing in this organization.”
Though his time in Kansas City’s organization has not been long so far, he was a part of the 2018 South Atlantic League champion Lexington Legends.
The 21 year old grew up a New York Yankees fan, with Derek Jeter as his role model on and off the field. But, he met both George Brett and Alex Gordon while on his first travel ball trip.
“Coincidentally, I went to my first Spring Training, and because my coach was a big Royals fan, we went to Surprise where I got to meet George Brett and Alex Gordon, as well as getting their autographs,” Isbel said. “That is a great memory of mine, and when my coach found out I got drafted by the Royals, he was in tears.”
Isbel wants to be successful, and he is working as hard as he can to be able achieve his goals. Heading into the 2019 season, he spent the offseason preparing mentally and hitting the weight room with trainers to help keep him healthy and in shape to compete at the highest level.
“My goals for 2019 are to stay healthy and be able to contribute in every game,” Isbel said. “Wherever I end up, I want to win another championship! That’s what I play for.”
He started his MLB career in the Rookie Leagues with the Idaho Falls Chukars before moving up to A ball with the Lexington Legends. Overall on the season, he slashed .326/.389/.504. MLB Pipeline currently ranks him as the 14th overall prospect in the Kansas City Royals organization.
He began his baseball career as an infielder, but he has since transitioned to the outfield, particularly center. He’s quick, with 60 grade speed, which makes him extremely valuable.
“I am comfortable in the outfield, but wherever I will help my team win, I will play,” he said. “I don’t write the lineup, I just play.”
The team-first attitude he possesses is crucial for success. Part of the reason why the Legends played at such a high level on the field last season was due to their closeness off the field.
“Team chemistry to me is everything,” Isbel said. “Even if you have the best players in the world, if you don’t have that ‘family type’ team chemistry, you will never win. I was only in Lexington for a few months, and those guys already felt like brothers to me.”
Aside from baseball, Isbel is a phenomenal bowler. Though he hasn’t yet achieved the feat of a perfect 300 like Mookie Betts, his highest score is a 282. In his other free time away from baseball, he enjoys spending time with his friends and family.
Regardless of which level Kyle Isbel finds himself playing for in the Kansas City Royals organization during the 2019 season, his talent, determination, and attitude will propel him to success, and soon, the honor of wearing a Royals uniform.