We continue on our journey through the Royals top prospects. In case you haven't yet committed the first part of the list to memory, here are #60-54:
54 Eduardo Paulino
I should have the next installment at the end of this week.
53--Nick Van Stratten--RF--Age:24
|2009||24||2 Teams||2 Lgs||A-A_adv||KCR||452||394||27||5||4||52||20||8||41||51||.307||.385||.431||.817|
Nick grew up around KC and the Royals drafted him the 10th round out of a St. Louis community college (is that redundant?). Nick has moved slowly through the system reaching High-A this year at age 24. He has hit pretty well in the low minors but he is a year older than Billy Butler. Of course, Van Stratten can play the field and, from reports, does a pretty good job in RF. It would be great if he can start next year in AA and keep proving his bat.
On one hand you've got a guy who plays a premium position with some power. On the other hand, you've got a guy who strikes out a ton, doesn't walk much is old for the league. I've got him ranked pretty low because I think his numbers are going to implode at Burlington next year.
Catchers are notorious for having funky developmental patterns--their job on the field is so unique and demanding that they many times develop slower that other positions. McCauley was drafted in the 12th round in 2007 and hit well in Arizona in 2007. He didn't hit quite as well in Idaho Falls in 2008. And last year his numbers weren't very good before going down with an injury. He will probably go back to Burlington, Iowa and hopefully his bat will come around.
Before Bryce Harper, there was another player who wanted to leave HS behind a year early to play pro ball. Fernando Cruz is not nearly as heralded or talented but he took his GED qualified for the 2007 draft a year early and the Royals took him. Some thought he would be a 2nd round talent had he waited for the 2008 draft. He predictably struggled in his first couple of years but last year showed some promise with his bat. The Royals moved him to Catcher from 3rd Base. I haven't heard how his defense is. I'm guessing he will go to short-season Idaho Falls next year.
|2009||23||3 Teams||3 Lgs||A-A_adv-Rook||KCR||0.76||15||0||2||23.2||1.225||5.3||0.4||5.7||14.5||2.53|
You don't replace Ross Gload. Eric Basurto just needs to play his game and Royals fans need to understand that you can't compare him to a former great. Basurto was our return for sending Gload to the Marlins (and eating his salary). As you can see from his stats, he K's a bunch of folks and walks a bunch of folks. He's got a fastball and that's about it. He won't make it without developing a secondary pitch.
Pedro Nivar was a relatively big international signing for us in 2008. He got six figures--which is now chicken feed on the international market. He's a SS and he posted a 233/380/291 line in the Dominican Summer League in 109 plate appearances after being injured. There isn't a lot to take away from this other than the 380 OBP is nice. Its not often you see an OBP 90 points higher than SLG--but there it is. He's toolsy and young and there is a something there to dream on at least. Best case scenario is that he plays next year in the Arizona Rookie League.
|2009||21||2 Teams||2 Lgs||Rook-A||KCR||1.67||20||3||37.2||1.407||7.4||0.5||5.3||8.6||1.64|
Cole White was our 6th Round draft choice in 2009 out of U. of New Mexico. He's a reliever with a sinking fastball in the 92-95 MPH range. He has developed a slider to go with it. Since he's a reliever he might be able to get by on those two pitches. He obviously needs better control but he has swing and miss stuff and could develop into a valuable reliever.