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Royals 2011 Top 60 Prospects: #54-49

Onward we continue.  As expected, this list will evolve a little over the winter.  This past week, I had to take out Ed Lucas and add in Lance Zawadzki.  And then with the DDJ trade, Justin Marks was added in.  I had left one open slot for just such an addition, so the list has 60 names on it.  If we add more prospects then we'll have to adjust the list some.  #54-49 covers several international signees and a couple of pitchers from past drafts.

60. Pat White--OF

59. Brain Fletcher--OF

58. Murray Watts--1B

57. Leonel Santiago--RHP

56. Justin Trapp--SS

55. Brandon Sisk--LHP


54. Mike Mariot--RHP--DOB:10/20/88

Mariot was the Royals 8th Round selection in 2010 from the University of Nebraska.  He had posted a 4.70 ERA there with 82K/30BB in 95IP.  Mariot has a solid fastball/curveball combo with his change-up lagging behind.  He had a solid pro debut at Idaho Falls posting a 3.92 FIP with 64K/16BB in 56IP.  Here is a good write up doublestix did on Mariot for Schaum's blog.  Mariot will debut at Kane County in 2011.  If he can develop a change he could be a decent starting pitching prospect.  If he doesn't develop the change up his future may lie in the bullpen.

53. Wilian Avinazar--RHP--DOB:2/27/89

Year Age Tm Lg Aff ERA G GS IP WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2008 19 Royals DOSL KCR 2.37 14 14 68.1 1.024 6.7 0.1 2.5 7.4 2.95
2009 20 Royals ARIZ KCR 6.43 14 9 56.0 1.625 11.1 1.0 3.5 9.5 2.68
2010 21 Burlington APPY KCR 2.62 13 13 72.0 1.083 8.4 0.5 1.4 8.4 6.09
3 Seasons 3.62 41 36 196.1 1.217 8.6 0.5 2.4 8.3 3.50
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 11/12/2010.

Avinazar rebounded from a tough 2009 to pitch well for short-season Burlington in 2010.  As you can see, he succeeded with good control and keeping the ball in the ballpark.  He's not exactly young for short season ball so he needs to impress in 2011 in full season ball to stay on the list.  I haven't found a ton of information about Avinazar's stuff, so if anyone has seen him, let me know.  He will have to earn a spot on Kane County's rotation in 2011.

52. Shin Jin-Ho--C--DOB:10/20/91

The Royals signed Jin-Ho out of Korea and gave him around $700k if I remember correctly.  He is a big right handed hitter.  He had a tough debut in the Arizona League. He hit 152/282/208 in 150 plate appearances.  About the only positive thing was that he walked 14% of the time.  I'm not yet terribly worried about his struggles.  Catcher can take a while to develop so we may have to be patient with him.  He'll be 19 all next year and he'll probably stay in short-season ball.

51. Keaton Hayenga--RHP--DOB:7/10/88

Year Age Tm Lg Lev Aff ERA G GS IP WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2009 20 Burlington APPY Rk KCR 3.66 13 13 66.1 1.266 9.2 0.3 2.2 4.6 2.13
2010 21 Burlington MIDW A KCR 6.13 21 19 105.2 1.675 11.1 1.0 4.0 3.7 0.91
2 Seasons 5.18 34 32 172.0 1.517 10.4 0.7 3.3 4.0 1.22
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 11/12/2010.


The Royals took Hayenga in the 31st Round of the 2007 draft after he was expected to go higher but fell because he injured his should his senior year.  The Royals gave him above slot money ($300,000) and he finally debuted in 2009. 2010 was nothing short of a disaster.  He needed to up his K rate but it dropped, his control got worse and he he gave up more HRs.  Hayenga has a decent FB/CB combo and I haven't heard any report as to what the reason for the struggles were.  2011 is a make or break year.  Just my own guess, but he could get moved to the bullpen to see if his stuff plays better there.

50. Orlando Calixte--SS--DOB:2/3/92

The Royals had reportedly signed this kid back in January but there have been some hangups and it seems like he's had about 4 different names.   He got in 66 ABs in the Dominican Summer league batting: 227/350/318.  He is supposed to be a good fielder who can handle the bat.  Dutton reported that he was impressive in Instructional League.  He probably has the highest ceiling of anyone yet on the list.  He may be in short season ball next summer and could move up on this list quite a bit by next year.

49. Yowil Espinal--2B--DOB:4/1/91

2008 17 Royals ARIZ Rk KCR 206 204 13 2 2 42 .240 .248 .348 .596
2009 18 Burlington APPY Rk KCR 271 236 20 14 22 53 .246 .327 .407 .734
2010 19 Idaho Falls PION Rk KCR 255 218 16 6 26 61 .252 .339 .312 .651
3 Seasons 732 658 49 22 50 156 .246 .308 .357 .665
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 11/12/2010.

A talented middle infielder the Royals signed from the Dominican Republic for $250,000, Espinal had a successful 2008 on the short-season Burlington team.  Espinal struggled in 2010.  His power vanished.  He took a few walks but too many K's and the lack of power really hurt him.  He also moved off SS to 2B which further hurt his stock.  I'm not sure if moved only to accommodate Justin Trapp--if so, perhaps he can go back to SS next season.