Kansas City Royals: New Season Prospect Watch, Blake Perkins
In the 23rd slot on MLB Pipeline’s 2019 preseason Kansas City Royals prospect list is switch hitting outfielder, Blake Perkins.
Hailing from Litchfield Park, Arizona, Blake Perkins was drafted in the 2nd round with the 69th overall pick by the Washington Nationals in 2015. Perkins was acquired by the Kansas City Royals in the Kelvin Herrera trade, alongside Kelvin Gutierrez and Yohanse Morel.
He began the 2018 season playing for the Potomac Nationals in the Carolina League. Perkins played in 65 games for the Nationals, slashing .234/.344/.290. He tallied 59 hits, 21 RBI’s, and 42 walks in the first half of 2018, and he struck out 67 times.
Once he was traded to the Kansas City Royals, he shifted to another team in the Carolina League: the Wilmington Blue Rocks. There, Perkins played in 64 games, slashing .240/.381/.322. He notched 56 hits, 18 RBI’s, drew 50 walks, and struck out, as he did in the first half of the season, 67 times.
According to MLB Pipeline, he ranks as the 23rd best prospect in the Royals farm system. Perkins is graded as a 40 overall, with his field tool grading in as his strongest at 65, followed by his run tool at 69, and his arm tool at 50. Rounding out the grades are his power and hit tools at 45 and 40 apiece.
He’s speedy, especially in the outfield and on the basepaths. That is a good quality to have, but the Royals think he has untapped potential that he could achieve with a little more aggressiveness on the bases. Perkins was the best prep player in his draft class. Now 22, MLB Pipeline has predicted that he will make it to the majors in the 2020 season.
Perkins has stolen 60 bases in the past two years, which is phenomenal. He is patient enough to draw a significant amount of walks to get him on base, which allows him extra chances to work his way back to home plate. He does have a higher strikeout rate than the Royals would like, but he can work on fixing that as his career progresses.
His fielding tool is his strongest overall, but the Royals also see more out of Blake Perkins as an outfielder. They want him to have a better sense of urgency. The good news is that he will be surrounded by talented outfielders in the Kansas City Royals system, which should help him to grow as a player before he hits the majors in a few years.