Royals Prospects Progress Report

KANSAS CITY, MO - JUNE 6: Reliever Greg Holland #56 of the Kansas City Royals throws a pitch against the Toronto Blue Jays at Kauffman Stadium on June 5, 2011 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by G. Newman Lowrance/Getty Images)

Another two months have passed, so it is time for another Progress Report. Like last time, I used NWRoyal's top 65 prospect list heading into the season, and assign them grades. These grades are cumulative, with some changing dramatically since the beginning of the season

Player Position/Level Grade Comments

Wil Myers

OF/AA  D+

Injuries, too many strikeouts, and a .697 OPS has led to a disappointing season so far

Eric Hosmer 1B/ML  A Has been a solid contributor for the Royals as a rookie.
Mike Moustakas 3B/ML C+ Moose has really struggled since being promoted, but should have plenty of time to figure things out
Mike Montgomery LHP/AAA C- Battled consistency and control problems. Monty is pitching in a hitters environment, 5.19 ERA is average.
John Lamb LHP/AA (DL)  - Surgery should not be crippling to career, but completely wastes a year
Christopher Dwyer LHP/AA  D- A not terrible FIP is the only thing keeping Dwyer from receiving an F.
Danny Duffy LHP/ML  B+ Has the pitching arsenal to succeed, but has battled some unexpected control problems in the majors.

 

Jake Odorizzi RHP/AA   A Completely dominated High-A, and has shown good control in AA. May battle home run issues.
Christian Colon SS/AA  C- Slowly starting to hit better, but overall numbers not impressive.
Aaron Crow RHP/ML  A Crow has been very effective out of the bullpen this season for the Royals
Lorenzo Cain OF/AAA  A- Has hit very well for the Storm Chasers, probably ready to be called up.
Cheslor Cuthbert 3B/Low-A  A Numbers are very impressive in Low-A,  and Cheslor is only 18.
Brett Eibner OF/Low-A  C-   Power and patience numbers are there, batting average should come around.
Johnny Giavotella 2B/AAA  B+ Numbers are solid, but not amazing in hitters league.
David Lough OF/AAA  B- Slightly better than average hitter in AAA. Will probably need injuries/trade to see playing time in the majors.
Tim Collins LHP/ML  C Walks are starting to turn into a real problem, peripherals predict doom on the horizon
Jeremy Jeffress RHP/AA  D Royals are still trying to convert him into a starter, with no success. Jeffress will probably struggle until he is moved back into the bullpen.
Tim Melville RHP/High-A  B- Strikeouts are still a little low, but has been effective this season.
Robinson Yambati RHP/Rookie  F 18.85 ERA, 9.15 FIP. Gross
Yordano Ventura RHP/Low-A  B Strikeouts and walks look good, but is allowing too many homeruns. 
Salvador Perez C/AAA  B- Was an average hitter in AA, but apparently played fantastic defense (he did throw out a ton of runners). Has been promoted to Omaha.
Derrick Robinson OF/AA  C- Starting to hit better, but hitting numbers still are below-average. Does have  41 steals.
Louis Coleman RHP/ML  A Has been impressive out of the Royals pen. SSS, but Coleman looks good against lefties in spite of his motion.
Jason Adam RHP/Low-A  C+ Control and strikeouts looks fine, but has really struggled with home runs.
Will Smith LHP/AA  C+  Has had bad luck stranding runners and with BABIP, but needs to strikeout more batters to take the next step as a prospect.
Paulo Orlando OF/AA  D Completely flopped in AAA, but has hit well since his return to AA. 
Kevin Chapman LHP/AA  A- ERA has not been great this season, but FIP shows that he has been strong out of the bullpen. Striking out 32% of batters in AA.
Everett Teaford LHP/AAA  B+

Teaford has pitched well in AA, but just ok in the majors in a small sample. It looks like the lefty is a full-time reliever now.

Tyler Sample RHP/High-A  C- Sample pitched above his head to start the season, but has now regressed too far the other direction. He needs to strikeout more than 14.5% of batters
Buddy Baumann LHP/AA  C Has not pitched since June 26 because of a shoulder injury, but solid strikeout numbers still make him an intriguing prospect.
Noel Arguelles LHP/High-A  B+ Shoulder issues may be the cause of Arguelles's lower than expected strikeout numbers, but has compensated with excellent control.
Jeff Bianchi INF/AA  C- Bianchi has been a below-average hitter in AA, and a .344 BABIP indicates he has not been the victim of bad luck.
Crawford Simmons LHP/Rookie    - Has missed the majority of the season due to injuries. Should return soon
Clint Robinson 1B/AAA  B Numbers have cooled considerably, along with the buzz surrounding him.
Jarrod Dyson OF/AAA  C Dyson is an average hitter in AAA; will probably be nothing more than a novelty in the majors.
Patrick Keating RHP/AA  C Strong strikeout numbers, horrible home runs numbers and bad luck have led to a strange season of out the bullpen.
Greg Holland RHP/ML  A Holland has been the Royals most dominant pitcher out of the bullpen so far this season.
Manuel Pina C/ML  C- Did not hit well in AAA, but will get a chance to play catcher for the Royals because of the injury to Matt Treanor.
Lucas May C/AAA  F Was horrendous for the Royals, is now hitting well for the Diamondbacks AAA team.
Blaine Hardy LHP/AA  D+ Battled control issues in AAA, but has pitched much better since returning to AA.
Michael Antonio SS/Rookie  B- Antonio has played fine so far, but numbers are not dominant. Showing improved plate discipline.
Kelvin Herrera RHP/AAA  A Started the season in High-A, now is in AAA. The hard-throwing righty has been electric for all three teams.
Humberto Arteaga SS/Rookie  F wRC+ of 44, with a BABIP of .296. Ugly start will only be improved by cutting strikeouts and increasing walks.
Justin Marks LHP/High-A  B- Intriguing strikeouts numbers, but has battled home runs and bad luck. Has pitched better than 4.73 ERA indicates
Elisaul Pimental RHP/High-A  B Pimental has pitched well in the summer heat, lowing his ERA two runs since June 1st. Has flashed improved control this season.
Jorge Bonifacio OF/Rookie  B- Has hit well, but will need to cut strikeouts (24.1%) and increase walks (4.1%) to maintain consistencty
Lance Zawadzki SS/AAA  D- Posting decent power for a shortstop, but the rest of his hitting numbers are weak, especially in a hitters league.
Rey Navarro INF/AA   B+ Overall numbers in High-A cooled after a scorching start, but were still strong enough to earn a promotion. Has been below average in AA, but not terrible.
Nathan Adcock RHP/ML  C- Not as bad as 5.36 ERA indicates, but has essentially been a replacement level pitcher.
Edgar Osuna LHP/AA  D- Osuna has had a disastrous season pitching (although he has been a victim of bad luck). Is currently on DL for shoulder injuries
Jose Bonilla C/High-A  D Has really struggled hitting over the summer; partly because of bad luck, and partly because he is not that good
Henry Barrera RHP/AA  D Missed most of the season because of an injury, and has shown electric but wild stuff in eight appearances. 
Greg Billo RHP/Low-A  A Billo has quietly dominated Low-A this season, and has the peripherals to back it up. Potential diamond in the rough.
Kevin Pucetas RHP/AAA  C- Has numbers similar to Montgomery without the potential. But, he is not Jose Guillen
Yowil Espinal 2B/Low-A  F

Espinal has been horrible all season, posting a .257 wOBA in 262 PA.

Orlando Caxito SS/Low-A  F Caxito has also been horrible for the Cougars this season, posting a .243 wOBA in 182 PA.
Keaton Hayenga RHPLow-A   - Hayenga has missed most of the season with an injury.
Jin-Ho Shin C/Rookie   C- Has improved as a hitter from last season, but is still below average. Shin needs to cut down on strikeouts
Willian Avinazar RHP/Rookie   - Avinazar has only pitched 13 innings this season, with mixed results.
Mike Mariot RHP/High-A  A- Mariot has pitched well as a starter or reliever this season; improving his strikeout numbers would greatly boost his value out of the pen.
Brandon Sisk LHP/AAA  B+ Sisk has been effective out of the bullpen for the Naturals and Storm Chasers, but walking 12% of batters faced is too high.
Justin Trapp SS/Rookie  A The suspension has not slowed Trapp down; the shortstop has a 140 wRC+ mostly thanks to a surge in power.
Leonel Santiago RHP/Low-A  A Santiago continues to impress, owning a 2.86 FIP.
Murray Watts 1B/Low-A  C A .353 OBP is the only thing saving his offensive season; his strikeouts are way up while his power is way done.
Brian Fletcher OF/Low-A  A Fletcher has hit well, but looks like a candidate for regression. A low walk rate plus a .393 BABIP makes him unlikely to continue posting a .428 wOBA
Pat White OF Retired

Out of the sixty players that I assigned grades to, I calculated the GPA of our farm system to be 2.38, or about a C+ average. I think that is an accurate representation of how our farm system has performed this year; it has not been a disaster, but it has not been as awesome as it was last season. My grading system is not perfect; I assume every prospect is equal in value, which is clearly a false assumption. For the final season grades, I would like to find a way to weight the system, but I am not sure how I would do that. Please sound off in the comments about any grades you agree with, disagree with, or something that surprised you. Lastly, I will not be able to post a Following The Royals Top Prospects post this week; I will be in Chicago hanging out with some friends and getting ready for a metal show (I don't own a laptop). So check out Dubya's Top Farm Perfomers or Pine Tar Press for your prospect fix if things get really depressing on the major league front.

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