Analyzing Minor League Ball’s Top 21 Royals Prospects

As most of you know, we just finished wrapping up our Top 100 Royals prospects recently. Obviously, we aren’t the only website with an opinion on the Royals prospect rankings. MLB Pipeline and MinorLeagueBall.com (SB Nation) are both examples of other websites that release prospect rankings for the Royals. Last summer, we analyzed MLB Pipeline’s prospect rankings with our own. SB Nation just released their top 21 Royals prospects, and we’re going to compare them to our own top 21 and analyze the differences. 

Minor League Ball RFR
1 Nick Pratto Nick Pratto
2 Khalil Lee Khalil Lee
3 Josh Staumont Seuly Matias
4 Foster Griffin Hunter Dozier
5 Hunter Dozier MJ Melendez
6 MJ Melendez Foster Griffin
7 Eric Skoglund Donnie Dewees
8 Michael Gigliotti Nicky Lopez
9 Seuly Matias Richard Lovelady
10 Richard Lovelady Brad Keller
11 Nicky Lopez Gabriel Cancel
12 Miguel Almonte Evan Steele
13 Emmanuel Rivera Scott Blewett
14 Scott Blewett Josh Staumont
15 Samir Dueniz Ryan O’Hearn
16 Donnie Dewees Eric Skoglund
17 Ryan O’Hearn Michael Gigliotti
18 Meibrys Viloria Samir Duenez
19 Daniel Tillo Chase Vallot
20 Chase Vallot Yefri del Rosario
21 Brad Keller Miguel Almonte

Thoughts:

  1. As was the case with MLB Pipeline, Minor League Ball agrees with us on the Royals consensus top two prospects in the organization. Nick Pratto and Khalil Lee represent the two highest ceilings in the organization and the Royals best chances at offensive super stars at the big league level (you can probably add Seuly Matias to that list as well).
  2. There is a bit of a gap when it comes to evaluating Josh Staumont. Minor League Ball is clearly infatuated with the ceiling. How couldn’t you be? Not many players in baseball feature 100 mph fastballs and the curveball that Staumont features. The problem we have at Royals Farm Report is the absurdly low floor that comes with the ceiling. Staumont is the only pitcher in the organization with the ability to become a number 1 SP (it’s highly unlikely but again, 100 mph and hammer curve). He could also flame out in 2018 and never reach the big leagues.
  3. 5 of the top 6 players in both of our lists are the same, just in different places. The only difference is that Minor League Ball had Josh Staumon at #3 and we had Seuly Matias who, again, has one of the highest ceilings in the organization. Minor League Ball has Matias at number 9 which . . . what ever. The consensus of having Pratto, Lee, Melendez, Griffin, and Dozier in both of our top 6 ought to convince you of the prospect hierarchy that exists in the organization, however.
  4. Minor League Ball gave a ton of love to 2017 4th round draft pick Michael Gigliotti. This is an encouraging sign, because it means Gigliotti was noticed around the baseball world and not just by Royals fans. I have a feeling Gigliotti will sky rocket up our rankings by the end of 2018. Kid can play.
  5. We were much more willing to give love to Rule 5 Draft selection than SB Nation was. The advanced metrics suggest that Keller had a much better year at AA last year than his traditional numbers would. Given the lack of depth of SP prospects that exist in the Royals organization, we were willing to throw Keller into our top 10. Minor League Ball also wasn’t willing to throw former Braves prospect Yefri del Rosario into their top 21, but, again, given the lack of SP depth in our farm system, del Rosario’s stuff is deserving of a top 20 spot.
  6. Both Minor League Ball and ourselves are a tad concerned with catching prospect Chase Vallot. Vallot missed most of 2017 with a back injury, which he should recover from just fine. The offense isn’t much of a concern, it’s more or less Vallot’s ability to stick at catcher. If Vallot has to move to 1B or DH in order to hit at the big league level, his offensive value will be decreased significantly. He’s still deserving of a top 20 spot, but he’s gonna have to play a full year behind the plate next year and hit well at AA to get himself back into our top 10.
  7. Last thought, if Khalil Lee, Michael Gigliotti, and Rudy Martin play together in the outfield at High-A Wilmington next year, that outfield is going to be a ton of fun to watch.
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