In the 28th spot on MLB Pipeline’s brand new rankings of the Kansas City Royals top prospects is catcher Sebastian Rivero.
A 20 year old from Venezuela, Sebastian Rivero was signed as part of the Royals international spending spree in July of 2015 by the Kansas City Royals. In 2017, he played for Burlington in the Rookie leagues before heading up to Lexington to play for the Legends for the entirety of the 2018 season.
During the 2018 season, he played in 77 total games, securing a slash line of .258/.301/.391. He shared the backstop duties with highly touted prospect, MJ Melendez as a member of the Legends. As stated by MLB Pipeline in their short scouting report of Rivero, he and Melendez are a good pair.
They were able to feed off of each other and make each other better. Melendez pushed Rivero to improve at the plate, as Melendez was stronger offensively. On the flip side, Rivero helped Melendez to become a better overall defender, as Rivero’s stronger suit is the defensive side. Some say the relationship between the two catchers mirrors that of young Salvador Perez and Wil Myers, who used to be a catcher as well in the minor leagues.
According to MLB Pipeline, the catcher is excellent behind the plate as a game-caller. His arm is also his strongest tool, at a plus grade of 60, so he is able to gun down base stealers. In 2018, he caught 35 percent of those trying to swipe an extra base on him.
As far as his other scouting grades are concerned, his field tool is a 55, which is also a plus grade for Rivero. The rest of his grades aren’t quite as strong, sitting at 45 on his hit tool, 40 for power, and 30 for his run tool. He profiles as a bottom of the order hitter, which is okay. He knows his role, and he understands that he will never be considered to be a power hitter.
Breaking down his 2018 season, Sebastian Rivero tallied 72 total hits, 23 of which were for extra bases. He drew 17 walks and struck out 59 times. MLB Pipeline predicts that he will hit the big leagues during the 2021 season, as a 22 year old.