i have started to rank the organizational depth of pitching for all 30 MLB teams on my blog. today's list was the royals, and here are the top 3 pitchers, under the age of 25, that i see in this organization:
- zack greinke, RHSP
- luke hochevar, RHSP
- leo nunez, RHSP
what this list attempts to do is identify the 10 pitchers who are most likely to make a positive impact at the MLB level within 3 years, then rank them according to their likelihood of reaching MLB, and the impact they can have once there.
if i had to approximate the formula, it would be 3 parts upside, 1 part likelihood of making the big leagues within 3 years.
also included in this list is a spotlight feature on royals' RHP Leo Nunez:
"nunez featured his changeup more during his string of relief appearances in september, and i think that helped him to throw hitters off. the development of this pitch, and his still young age will allow him to make the transition to the rotation, IMO. the problem is that he hasn't started for any appreciable length of time since 2004, and that was in low A.
"i'd like to see him continue in his role as a long reliever for the next year. with the royals rotation being what it is, there will be plenty of innings for him to soak up in that role, and he'll continue to gain more confidence as next year wears on. his stuff is most definitely MLB ready, and despite the way he's been handled, i think he could be a better than league average starter as soon as 2009.
"this kid's on his way up."