#7 Kelvin Herrera
Acquired: Signed as International Free Agent on 12/13/06
From: Tenares, Hermanas Mirabal, Dominican Republic
Few prospects have dominated the minor leagues quite like Kelvin Herrera. Despite losing nearly two full seasons to elbow issues, Herrera surfaced for the first time in Kansas City as a twenty-one year old. Entering 2012, it appears that Herrera has overcome some pretty intense odds to win one of the final bullpen spots.
This summer in Kansas City fans can look forward to triple digit heat, a solid curve, and a plus change up. The combination proved too much for minor leaguers to handle and now the former Futures Game participant will test his skills at the highest level.
Last fall the Royals commented that they didn't believe Herrera's career was over as a starter. Yes, he does have the arsenal to be the front line starter that the Royals so desperately need. However, I believe we've reached a point with Herrera that the Royals should be thankful for what they have. They shouldn't play with fire. Understand that while the potential reward is great, the possibility of Herrera's career coming to a tragic end after the result of a starter's workload is equally great.
Odds are the Royals were paying lip service to the possibility. It goes without saying that the front office will have an enormous amount of information at their fingertips while moving forward. I would be shocked if Herrera ever attempts the transition to the rotation. As a result his upside to that of a closer, but one year ago, I think all of us would have been more than happy with that result.
Picture taken from Suleka.com