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Royals Review Prospect Pulse: May

It's been six long months but the Prospect Pulse is back--which means we can over analyze a month's worth of data and come up with irrational conclusions. Our top prospects started off pretty well but there was scuffling from some of the lower ranked prospects. I'm also going to include a poll question each month--this month is about Derrick Robinson.

I put this list together before the Rosa trade, so I put Rey Navarro in Rosa's spot. I would have ranked Navarro a little lower (around #20) but didn't want to redo my spreadsheet. That reflects my feelings on the deal--not crazy about it but its not a horrible deal. Small loss for the Royals---which if we grade on a curve compared to other deals in recent history equals a small win. Navarro so far this year has upped his walk rate and been unlucky on balls in play--but he is going from the hitter friendly California league to the Carolina league.

I also wrote this before the latest bad start from Tim Melville--worried about this kid. After this last outing, I would probably drop him another 5 slots or so. He's been beyond bad this year--hopefully he'll fix whatever needs fixin' soon.

For hitters, the stats listed are avg/obp/slg. For pitchers I list: k/9---bb/9---FIP.

Rank Name Last Month April stats YTD Comment
1 Mike Montgomery--LHP--AA 1 11.9/1.4/1.34 Has yet to be challenged in his pro career.
2 Eric Hosmer--1B--HighA 3 421/500/618 Making last year a distant memory
3 Aaron Crow--RHP--AA 2 5.1/3.1/5.36 A little inconsistent and would like to see more K's.
4 Wil Myers--C--LowA 4 232/293/439 Started off a little slow but has been heating up. Has also been unlucky.
5 Mike Moustakas--3B--AA 5 324/427/735 Made an impression in the week he's been back
6 John Lamb--LHP--LowA 10 10.1/5.6/3.75 Off to a great start
7 Noel Arguelles--LHP--DL 6 Not sure when we will get to see him
8 Tim Melville--RHP--HighA 7 8.5/8.5/5.47 Rough first month, let's hope May brings better things. Needs to find command.
9 Kelvin Herrera--RHP--LowA 18 10/5.4/3.71 Love this kid, healthy and off to a great start
10 Kila Kaaihue--1B--AAA 13 306/444/611 Perhaps 2009 was the fluke and 2008 was the real deal.
11 Derrick Robinson--CF--AA 25 329/427/471 Starting to believe as he is continuing his strong finish from last year.
12 Johnny Giavotella--2B--AA 15 324/427/392 Believe in Johnny G!
13 David Lough--OF--AAA 10 250/289/345 Rough start, lack of plate discipline is a problem.
14 Chris Dwyer--LHP--HighA 11 9.2/7.2/4.82 It's all about control and consistency for Dwyer right now
15 Dan Duffy--LHP--N/A 6 Greg Schaum seems to think he will be back--I'm holding on to hope.
16 Tyler Sample--RHP--LowA 16 7.1/8.0/4.61 Fighting the strike zone again after showing good control last year.
17 Jordan Parraz--OF--AAA 12 156/202/273 Was last year a fluke?
18 Rey Navarro--SS--HighA
20 228/292/316 Moving from hitters league to pitchers league
19 Blake Wood--RHP--AAA 22 5.7/3.3/3.48 So-so start but hard to believe he's not better than a couple of guys in our big league bullpen
20 Luis Coleman--RHP--AA 16 5.2/3.5/5.94 So-so start after amazing pro debut last year
21 Carlos Fortuna--RHP-EXST 18 Thought he might get assignment to Burlington--but it look like Idaho Falls in June
22 Cheslor Cuthbert--3B--EXST 19 Look for him in Arizona this summer.
23 Yowil Espinal--SS--EXST 20 Another guy I'd love to see in full season ball.
24 Manuel Pina--C--AA 43 283/375/472 Started off hot last year for the Rangers before tailing off--interested to see how he does this year.
25 Patrick Keating--RHP--HighA 28 13.1/4.1/4.32 Continues to have an amazing K rate--needs to drop that BB rate.
26 Tim Smith--OF--AA 27 333/375/467 Had some injuries, hit well in limited ABs.
27 Salvador Perez--C--HighA 31 286/321/347 A sleeper worth keeping an eye on.
28 Edgar Osuna--LHP--AA NR 7.7/0.7/3.63 Great control keeps him competitive. Iffy fastball is a question mark.
29 Clint Robinson--1B--AA NR 275/405/435 Are the on base abilities for real? Intriguing.
30 Chris Hayes--RHP--AAA 29 0.0/0.0/3.66 Phantom injury put him on DL. Waits as Royals bullpen burns.
31 Brandon Sisk--LHP--AA 33 9.0/4.5/5.52 Another bullpen arm, struggling early
32 Mario Santiago--RHP--AA NR 6.0/2.4/2.79 Building on his impressive winter league performance.
33 Buddy Baumann--RHP--HighA NR 13.2/4.9/1.96 This guy has a big arm in a relatively small body
34 Eric Basurto--RHP-HighA 11.1/1.2/1.45 little old but love the Ks vs. BB
35 Blaine Hardy--RHP--AA NR 4.5/1.1/2.79 Not the greatest stuff but results are impressive
36 Rowdy Hardy--LHP--AA 57 5.9/0.0/2.12 The other half of the Hardy boys is doing well
37 Hilton Richardson--CF--LowA 21 224/274/379 Was afraid this might happen--OK power but can't get on base
38 Crawford Simmons--LHP--EXST 32 We'll see him in June
39 Keaton Hayenga--RHP--EXST 26 Wonder if we see him in LowA if someone gets hurt
40 Jeff Bianchi--SS--DL 9 Tough guy to rank--he's down here for safe keeping until 2011 when he's hopefully healthy
41 Greg Holland--RHP--AAA 30 8.0/2.0/2.54 Gets a little lost in the shuffle but doing well at AAA
42 Alex Llanos--CF--EXST 35 Interested to see if the progress on the bat is for real
43 Jason Taylor--3B--HighA 40 224/260/403 Bad start but heated up at the end of the month
44 Barry Bowden--RHP--HighA 58 12.9/4.7/3.89 Another bullpen arm with a huge K rate
45 Jose Bonilla--C--LowA 37 200/349/229 Falling behind some of the other catchers in the system
46 Nick Van Stratten--OF--AA 53 284/324/403 Seems like he's been around forever.
47 Everett Teaford--LHP--AA NR 8.7/1.9/3.53 Had done alright with the move to AA
48 Malcolm Culver--3B--EXST 36 Another guy I'm surprised didn't find his way on to a full season roster--which isn't exactly encouraging.
49 Jarrod Dyson--CF--DL 45 Just a month ago, there was a lot of talk about Dyson and Robinson was somewhat forgotten.
50 Gerard Hall--2B--LowA NR 270/400/405 Pickup who is showing skills at Low-A

Player of the Month: Mike Montgomery. His numbers were amazing, he breezed through High-A (his finals Wilmington numbers--combined with last year: 76.2ip 52h 0hr 16w 79k, ERA under 2, WHIP under 1. He had the best minor league pitching performance that BA's JJ Cooper had ever seen in person. He's now in the mix for 3rd best pitching prospect in baseball (Strasburg and Chapman at the top) and he's probably the best pitching prospect the Royals have had since Zack. After a rained out 1.2ip, he'll make his AA debut that counts later this week.

Poll Question: Derrick Robinson's OPS in 2007 was 597, in 2008 it was 638 and late last season it was in the mid 500s. He tweaked his stance a little and his OPS over last month+ of the season was over 800. Now one month into AA he's at 898 thanks to increasing his walk rate, increasing his power and an high BABIP.