Old Scouting Report for Royals Players

Peter G. Aiken-US PRESSWIRE

We take a look back at some old scouting report for Royals past and present. You will remember this Royals Review post for the rest of your life.

The National Baseball Hall of Fame has begun posting scouting reports for Major League players, and it is fascinating to go back like a time traveler and see these players through scouts eyes. While on the one hand, some of the scouts are quite prescient, you also come to the realization that it seems insane that teams solely relied upon these chicken scratchings for so long.

Let's go back and look at some selected Royals from yesteryear.

George Brett from 1971:

HAS IMPROVED IN HIS ALL AROUND PLAY - IS RUNNING MUCH BETTER AND IS STRONGER AT PLATE. FATHER SAYS HE WILL LET HIM SIGN.

Yawn. You're about to sign a Hall of Famer! Get excited! He also lists Brett as a "fringe" prospect whose has below average power.

Willie Wilson from a Brewers scout in 1974:

THIS BOY IS ONE OF THE TOP ATHLETES IN AMERICA, HE HAS OVER 150 COLLEGE OFFERS, HAS AN AGENT, A SCHOOL TEACHER....HAS SIGNED A LETTER OF INTENT TO MARYLAND UNIV. WILSON TOLD ME THAT IF THE DEAL IS RIGHT HE WOULD SIGN....EVERYONE KNOWS ABOUT THIS BLACK BOY. HAS A DEFINITE FUTURE IN A MILWAUKEE BREWERS UNIFORM, LET'S GET HIM.

I didn't know the slaveowner from "Roots" was a Brewers scout.

Also in 1974:

Bonus Expected: MUCHO DINERO

Willie wants to get paid!

Clint Hurdle from 1975:

SHOULD BE A GOOD AVERAGE ML OF WITH 25 OR 30 HR POWER.

Hurdle did hit 32 home runs....in his entire 10 year Major League career.

David Cone from 1981:

NOT IN PITCHING SHAPE. H.S. DOES NOT PLAY BASEBALL - HAS PITCHED VERY FEW INNINGS DUE TO POOR WEATHER. NEEDS ANOTHER PITCH. NEEDS TO CHANGE SPEED.

PLAYER IS A GOOD ATHLETE. REMINDS ME OF NEIL ALLEN - METS.

STEADY IMPROVEMENT EACH YEAR - WANTS TO SIGN - LOCAL BOY - GOOD SIGN

The White Sox, scouting him in Omaha in 1986:

Can be an excellent Major League reliever.

Not sure anyone saw the kind of career he would have.

Bret Saberhagen from 1982:

TALL, WIRY FRAME. PLENTY OF ROOM TO FILL OUT. STILL EXPERIENCING SOME SHOULDER SORENESS, BUT MUCH IMPROVED FROM EARLIER IN SEASON.

Sadly, that would be a foreshadow of things to come.

Bo Jackson from 1985:

DON BAYLOR (YANKS) TYPE BODY. WELL PROP. TYPE BODY. HAD RIGHT SHOULDER INJURY THIS PAST FOOTBALL SEASON...HAS EXCELLENT BASEBALL BODY THAT CAN PLAY FOR MANY YEARS; VERY STRONG, DURABLE & THICK THROUGHOUT.

Ironic they mention he can play for many years.

Tom Gordon from 1986:

MARGINAL PROSPECT. WIRY TYPE STRENGTH. JUST A BOY THAT SHOULD GET STRONGER. MOST AREAS CRUDE BUT POSSESSES BODY TYPE & AGILITY TO IMP AS HE MATURES. ALSO PITCHES.

Oh and by the way, he pitches.

Kevin Appier from 1987:

POOR OUTING PERFORMANCE WISE, BUT PLAYS FOR LOUSY CLUB AND CONDITIONS WERE WINDY/COLD. WILL NOT LAST LONG IN DRAFT. THREW TWO (2) 82 MPH SLIDERS. W/ PRO COACHING, COULD BE GOOD ONE.

Ape should have gotten used to play for lousy clubs. That was from scout Guy Hansen. Guy would be Appier's minor league pitching coach and his Major League pitching coach for a few years.

Mike MacFarlane from a Mariners scout in 1988:

Being platooned, played mostly against LHP. Does nothing really well. Arm is erratic & drops a lot of pitches behind the plate.

Mac would catch over a thousand games in the big leagues.

Bob Hamelin from a Padres scout in 1988:

Weaknesses: Below ave. runner, arm, and fielder. Needs a lot of work at 1B defense. A base clogger. Could lose at least twenty pounds, and might improve def. somewhat.

A Royals scouting report notes he was offered a football scholarship to Notre Dame. Nothing about arm-wrestling though.

Joe Randa from 1988:

INCONSISTENT GLOVE. TENDS TO LIFT EARLY ON GROUND BALLS.

Randa holds the Royals record for most consecutive errorless games at third and was considered a fine fielder.

Michael Tucker from 1990:

HAS A WINNING ATTITUDE. PLAYS HARD. HAS DESIRE TO PLAY BALL.

Tucker was known for being a bit aloof, with a less than stellar attitude. Something this Rangers scout picked up in 1992:

HIS LACK OF HUSTLE AT RANDOLPH-MACON COLL. BOTH IN THE FIELD AND ON THE BENCH WAS VERY EVIDENT

The scout also calls him "MR. HIGH POCKETS." What is that all about?

Johnny Damon from 1992 by a scout named Allard Baird:

BAT IS A BIG QUESTION FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE! NOT FOR ME!! CLEAN UP HIS PAP (?) POSITION AND WE'RE READY TO GO. TURF TYPE OF WOULD FIT WELL IN ROYALS STADIUM.

Perhaps part of the reason Allard was held in high regard among scouts. Damon had been promising as a junior prep prospect, but suffered a really bad senior year. Allard did note his terrible arm too.

Mike Sweeney from 1995:

DEFENSIVE SKILLS FOR CATCHER TO GO WITH BAT POTENTIAL...SETUP WELL AT CATCHER DISPLAYS SOFT HANDS, FRAMES BALL, BLOCKS BALL, AND HANDLES & COMMUNICATES W/PITCHERS

Sweeney would play 201 games at catcher before being moved to first base, and eventually designated hitter.

Chicago White Sox scout on Dee Brown in 1996:

BAT AND POWER IS HIS TICKET TO ML. WILL BE A STRUGGLING LF OR 1B TYPE AT BEST. WILL NOT MOVE QUICKLY AND COULD STRUGGLE FOR SOME TIME.

Royals shoulda hired that guy.

Dan Reichert from 1997:

TALL THIN FRAME. SMALL THIN BONED. BROAD SHOULDER, FLAT CHEST. AVE/LONG ARMS W/ BIG HANDS AND LONG FINGERS. LOW WAIST W/ NO ASS, NARROW HIPS AND SMALL THIGHS AND CALFS.

We're not selling jeans here!

Luke Hochevar scouting report from the Reds as a minor leaguer in 2006:

All of the things you're looking for in a top of the rotation guy. No wind, high 3/4, low front side. Three pitch guy (FB, CB, CH). Showed a little sign of nervousness early, misfired a couple of FB, but settled down quickly.....Good athletic body, arm works well-see this guy as a potential #2-3 ML starter.

It wasn't just the Royals that were high on the guy.

How about some players the Royals didn't like?

Dale Murphy in 1974 gets ranked with all "fair" or "poor" marks. His power in particular is marked as "poor."

Wade Boggs in 1976:

BAT SLOW AND ALSO FALLS BACK AT PLATE EVEN AGAINST RHP. RIGID BAT MECHANICS NEEDS A LOT OF HELP...

NOT WORTH THAT MUCH

It was eating chicken that saved Boggs' career.

Alan Trammell in 1976:

WALKS LIKE A DUCK....

NO POWER. WEAK BAT. CAN MAKE ROUTINE PLAYS BUT BECAUSE OF FEET HAS TROUBLE ON COMING IN ON SLOW HIT BALLS.

HAS BETTER TOOLS FOR 2B.

I should remind you that the Royals employed guys like Onix Concepcion, Buddy Biancalana, and David Howard at shortstop during Trammell's career.

Harold Baines in 1977:

WIRY STRONG, WELL BUILT ATHLETIC BODY. HAS HAIR DOWN IN "CORN ROWS"

COULD BE MORE TROUBLE THAN HE IS WORTH. TOOK 5 POINTS OFF FOR ????? ATTITUDE

He probably listens to that evil "hip-hop" music.

Fun stuff. Feel free to search through the database and find some more interesting scouting reports. The database seems to primarily cover the early 70s to about the late 90s, so it doesn't have a lot of recent players. It also doesn't have guys that never reached the big leagues (I looked for Colt Griffin). And the database crashes a TON so be patient. But these are still really fun to go back through, so kudos, whoever is making these public.

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