Despite not having pitched above the Advanced-A level in professional baseball, this southpaw has shown a tremendous upside.
Coming off a Rising Star award in the Arizona Fall League in 2019, left-handed starting pitcher Daniel Lynch was also a non-roster invitee to the KC Royals’ Arizona spring training camp in 2020. He was then selected after summer camp for the club’s 60-man Player Pool and spent the rest of the summer working with the Kansas City’s other non-major leaguers at the team’s alternate training site as well.
While not having gaudy stats with the University of Virginia, Lynch was still a sought-after arm and was selected just one pick behind Kowar in the 2018 amateur draft. He really put himself on the radar playing for Orleans in the Cape Cod League in 2017, going 4-0 with a minuscule 0.92 WHIP.
He has blown through minor league competition in 32 career starts, posting a 2.50 ERA, 157 punch-outs in 147.2 innings, and a WHIP of 1.19. He has only allowed six home runs in that time.
Depending on what happens with Danny Duffy, the KC Royals may require a left-hander to offset the righty-dominated starting rotation. Lynch would be a nice fit throwing a couple of games behind Kris Bubic to keep other teams from loading up with lefty hitters every time they face Kansas City.
One appropriate scenario could be that Duffy begins the year in the rotation but, if he becomes shaky like he was in 2020, Lynch gets the call-up from the minor leagues while Duffman moves to the Royals’ bullpen where he could be a nice asset.