Originally drafted by the Texas Rangers in the 39th round, Travis Jones opted to go to school and earn his degree instead. Three years later, he was drafted by the Kansas City Royals in the 29th round from the university of Texas. At 6’4″, 210 lbs, Jones showed the ability at Texas to play at multiple spots in the infield. After being drafted by the Royals, he saw most of his time in right field.
Across 42 games for the Idaho Fall Chukars, Jones slashed a solid .335/.423/.537/.986. As a 22-year-old, Jones showed his advanced feel for hitting. His .986 OPS was top 10 in the Pioneer league last year. As he has a big body, the power, which should be there, has not yet translated, and he showed off more of the same ability from his college days. The gap power is certainly there, he had 15 doubles with 4 homers. Hopefully with added strength, he can tap into his power and turn those doubles into homers.
Jones will likely advance to full-season ball to start 2018. As with any rookie league stats, these must be taken with a grain of salt. He had a very encouraging year however, and it will be interesting to see where he goes from here. With experience in the infield from his college days, he has a utility player written all over him. A classic Royals player, with seemingly the intangibles to succeed; keep an eye out for the name Travis Jones.
Photo Credits: Andy Nietupski