MLB released the 2023 SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game rosters, featuring the top prospects from around the league. The KC Royals do not have a top-100 prospect in their system, but Omaha Storm Chasers reliever Will Klein will represent the organization in the game.
KC Royals prospect Will Klein heads to Seattle for the 2023 Futures Game.
The Royals' quick pitching improvements in the minor leagues offer some hope for the organization moving forward. Outside of some dominant starters in the lower levels, Klein's improvements this year have been most welcomed. The 6'5" righty recently made his Triple-A debut, impressing with 11 strikeouts to four walks across six innings of action in Omaha. Klein is posting several career bests across his 2023 season. Control has always been Klein's biggest issue, but his 4.58 BB/9 is a career-best. Plus, his 14.01 K/9 and dominant fastball quickly make up for the walks.
MLB.com puts him as the Royals' 22nd-best prospect this year, but if he can continue to improve his control, he has the potential to move up that list quickly. Injuries and a lack of consistent playing time have hindered his development, but his potential is undeniable. Klein "profiles best as a two-pitch power reliever with his 100-mph arm and good curveball," according to evaluators.
The Royals select Klein in the fifth round of the 2020 MLB Draft. He is one of four former fifth-round selections appearing at this year's Futures Game. Out of 50 players named to the roster, Klein was the only representative from the Royals' organization. The other 49 prospects include 28 prospects on MLB.com's Top 100 list and 14 former first-round picks.
All the way back in 2005-2006, the Royals dominated the Futures Games in a sense. Justin Huber won the game's MVP in 2005, and Billy Butler won the prize in 2006. The vast differences in those two careers since then show that making it to the Futures Game does not ensure a player's future success. In fact, many players who have shined in the Futures Game have failed to make an impact in the major leagues. On the other hand, some players who were not even selected for the game have gone on to become All-Stars and even Hall of Famers.
The game takes place on July 8 at 6 p.m. CST in the Seattle Mariners' home, T-Mobile Park. Fans can watch the seven-inning game on Peacock or listen on SiriusXM. For those who hate subscriptions, watching this Futures Game is going to be a drag. The event is just one of many during the All-Star Week festivities, capped off by July 11's MLB All-Star Game.