Monday, April 18, 2011

Where can we Upgrade?

So with the Royals surprise start, I have began to think about what it means in terms of the prospects. What should the Royals do if they stay in contention? Stick with the Major Leaguers? Promote players that could help now? Trade them? Or not let the state of the Major League team affect the plan?

I don't want to get into that discussion right now, but I do want to think what positions the Royals could upgrade by promotions from within. So let's look at the weaknesses of the Major League roster.

1. Catcher

Unfortunately I see know potential solutions at the catcher position right now. No prospects are going to be ready midseason, although at some point Jason Kendall will return from injury. This would probably mean that Pena is the odd man out and the Royals would lose all offensive potential at the position.

2. First Base

Kila Ka'aihue at this point is not getting it done. Through the first fifteen games he's hitting .174/.304/.283 and with Hosmer tearing it up in Omaha an upgrade is readily available. I believe Ka'aihue will have until early June to get something going, but if he hasn't by then it will likely be Eric Hosmer's time to shine.

3. Second Base

Should Getz falter with the bat second base is another production that could be upgraded as the season progresses. This could occur in one of two ways. The most likely probably involves a Mike Moustakas promotion and Mike Aviles sliding over across the diamond. But the other solution involves the promotion of Johnny Giavotella. Giavotella's defense is much improved and after tearing up both the Texas League and the Arizona Fall League a season ago he is off to a hot start in Omaha.

4. Third Base

In case you haven't heard the Royals have the top third base prospect in all of baseball. He is in triple-A now and a year ago he led minor league baseball in home runs. He also recorded more extra base hits than strikeouts. Mike Moustakas could provide a big boost to the middle of the order should he hit the ground running on his promotion.

5. Centerfield

Right now most fans and Kansas City media treat Melky Cabrerra like he is off to a good start. Personally I'm not a fan of sub .300 on base percentages. Most fans would suggest Lorenzo Cain as an upgrade but I'd also like to throw David Lough's name into the mix. He has a great blend of tools and if he can outproduce Cain over the next couple of months then I'd like to see him granted the first opportunity.

6. Rotation

Here is where the Royals could receive the biggest boost this season. Right now the Royals have three rotation spots that have produced consistently but they could look to bolster the rotation by promoting Mike Montgomery and/or Danny Duffy. If Davies can get it going and be a servicable back end guy then the Royals could add one of the aforementioned prospects and have a decent unit. If they added both and they both perform as they could the rotation could have two of the top young starters in baseball.

The Royals have shocked baseball with their quick start much like they did in 2003. However, unlike that season the Royals could have enough bullets in the minor league gun to reload for a Central title run. Hopefully they can continue to overachieve long enough to find out.


  1. It seems that it's just a matter of time before hosmer gets the call with kila proving that he's a AAAA guy.

  2. I agree, and I have been very clear that I think Hosmer is a guy that is going to immediately have a presence in the middle of the order. If that is the case then his promotion could provide a big boost to the middle of the order.