Kansas City Royals Top 20 Prospects

Photo Credit: Brian Westerholt/Four Seam Images

Photo Credit: Brian Westerholt/Four Seam Images

5. Miguel Almonte – RHP

Date of Birth: April 4, 1993

Height/Weight: 6’2’/180

Bats/Throws: Right/Right

Acquired: International free agency in 2010

Almonte debuted in 2015 as he made nine appearances out of the bullpen, but he is viewed as a starter long-term. Kansas City signed him for $25,000 out of the Dominican Republic in 2010 and he could follow Salvador Perez, Yordano Ventura and Kelvin Herrera as the next Latin American signed by Rene Francisco to make an impact in Kansas City. The 22-year old throws his fastball into the upper 90s and has an advanced feel for his changeup, which comes in in the low 80s and which he tends to throw too often. He throws strikes with these two pitches, but needs to develop his curveball. Once he does that, he should be ready to help the Royals’ rotation. ETA: 2016

4. Ashe Russell – RHP

Date of Birth: August 28, 1996

Height/Weight: 6’4”/201

Bats/Throws: Right/Right

Acquired: Drafted 1st round (21st overall) in 2015

The 21st selection of the 2015 First-Year Player Draft, Russell was widely considered to be the top high school arm in the class. The Indiana native has two current plus pitches in his fastball that reaches 97 and his low 80s slider that features sharp bite when he is on. He did not use his changeup much in high school as his fastball-slider combo were plenty to dominate the Indiana high school ranks. He will need to work on the third pitch in order to maximize his potential as a frontline starter. ETA: 2019

3. Alec Mills – RHP

Date of Birth: November 30, 1991

Height/Weight: 6’4”/185

Bats/Throws: Right/Right

Acquired: Drafted 22nd round in 2012

One of the biggest risers in the Royals’ system, Mills bounced back from injury in a big way in 2015. A former walk-on at Tennessee-Martin and a 22nd round pick in 2012, Mills returned and had a strong 2015 campaign in the Carolina League with a mid-90s fastball and the same advanced command that he had prior to having surgery. He throws a ton of strikes, has a feel for three pitches and has clean mechanics. Expect to see a healthy Mills rapidly climb the Royals’ system. ETA: 2017

2. Kyle Zimmer – RHP

Date of Birth: September 13, 1991

Height/Weight: 6’3”/215

Bats/Throws: Right/Right

Acquired: Drafted 1st round (5th overall) in 2012

Zimmer was a third baseman when he was initially recruited to the University of San Francisco, but the Dons converted him to the mound and he took off. Some teams considered him to be the best overall pitcher in the 2012 Draft, and the Royals selected him with the fifth overall pick. When healthy, Zimmer has four plus pitches and can throw them for strikes, but health has been his Achilles heel since he entered pro ball. Zimmer could easily be a part of the Royals’ rotation right now if he stayed healthy, but the team was just happy to see him get through a full season in 2015 without missing an extended period of time. The Royals were active at the deadline but were conscious to avoid parting with Zimmer, who some feel has the best arm in the organization. He has a brother who plays the outfield in the Indians’ system and it will be interesting to see the two battle it out in the big leagues in the near future. ETA: 2016

  1. Raul Mondesi – SS

Date of Birth: July 27, 1995

Height/Weight: 6’1”/185

Bats/Throws: Switch/Right

Acquired: International free agency in 2011

Mondesi made history as he became the first player to ever make his MLB debut during the World Series. The 20-year old is the son of the former outfielder of the same name and grew up around the game. Unlike his father, Mondesi is a wiry middle infielder whose best tool right now is his plus speed. He has smooth action up the middle and should have no problem sticking at shortstop. His bat needs some time to develop and the Royals have been exceptionally aggressive with him. If he gets a chance to let his bat catch up with the rest of his game, he has the chance to be an all-star caliber player. ETA: 2017

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