Kansas City Royals Top 15 Prospects: 2011
1) Eric Hosmer, 1B
2) Mike Moustakas, 3B
3) Wil Myers, OF
4) Mike Montgomery, LHP
5) John Lamb, LHP
6) Jake Odorizzi, RHP
7) Johnny Giavotella, 2B
8) Danny Duffy, LHP
9) Jeremy Jeffress, RHP
10) Tim Collins, LHP
11) Chris Dwyer, LHP
12) Aaron Crow, RHP
13) Louis Coleman, RHP
14) Brent Eibner, OF
15) Christian Colon, SS
I'm going to start this prospect list off the same way I have the first two - by stating that in my ranking of players, I generally give preference to projectability over upside.Which means that players like Christian Colon will likely rank somewhat lower on my list than he might on others.
The incredible thing about the Royals system however, is that it really doesn't have a ton of high-upside, low-probability players. They have a ton of high-upside, high probability players. Which is just absurd.
Just for the sake of honesty, and to highlight how absurd the Royals system is, let me point out that I'd have to do a Top-30 for this team to get down to prospects who would be rounding out the other clubs Top-15 lists. This is just a ridiculously loaded farm system. Most teams are lucky to have one or two area's of strength within their system, this system is strong literally everywhere.
Most of the time in making prospect lists I feel comfortable in the end. Maybe there were a group of 4-5 guys who all could've made the it into the 13-15 spots, but I rarely feel bad in omitting them. I feel like in choosing my Top-15 I'm "disrespecting" another 15 guys. There are a lot of guys like that on this list - Chelsor Cuthbert, David Lough, Tim Melville, Will Smith, Clint Robinson... I like all of those guys (amongst others) a lot but they couldn't crack my Top-15. How the hell is Greg Holland not on my list? He throws a legitimate 96+ and has shown he can get guys out in a MLB bullpen!
If there is a complaint of any kind to be had, it's that the system lacks a true potential ace. Pitchers Montgomery, Lamb, Odorizzi, Duffy, Dywer, and Crow give the Royals a full rotation worth of likely MLB starting pitchers, but they profile as #2-#5 types. Beyond all the potential rotation arms, they have a bullpen worth of potential setup guys too. Jeffress, Collins, Holland, Tim Melville, and Patrick Keating all profile well as projectable contributors to the future of the Royals bullpen.
All of those arms and the real strength of the system might still be in it's three big bats. Hosmer, Moustakas, and Myers are three of the most high end, projectable hitters in all of baseball.
Corey Ettinger is a Senior Writer for Baseball Digest as well as a proud contributor to both 612Sports.net, 312Sports.com, and 313sports.com. He also provides extensive analysis of the American League Central Division at his own blog, AL Central In Focus. Be sure to follow me on Twitter @Coreyettinger for the latest updates, random thoughts and general tomfoolery.