Pine Tar Press Minor League Predictions and Goals for the New Year Reviewed by Momizat on . The New Year is always a good time to make predictions as well as set goals for the future.  As you can see from my effort last year I'll be wrong about quite The New Year is always a good time to make predictions as well as set goals for the future.  As you can see from my effort last year I'll be wrong about quite Rating:
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Pine Tar Press Minor League Predictions and Goals for the New Year

The New Year is always a good time to make predictions as well as set goals for the future.  As you can see from my effort last year I’ll be wrong about quite a few but I am happy to say that I met my personal goals of attending a lot minor league games and adding quite a bit of Royals minor league video.  So here we go again but this time I’m dragging in the whole crew at PTP to show off their skills.

Clint Scoles

The Callups
This list is obviously much much shorter than last year but there should be a couple of names that we see by September
Wil Myers – Has to wait til September due to Gordon and Frenchy in the corners but a outstanding AAA season will get him a look.
Mike Montgomery – A bounce back in Omaha will get Mike a look sometime after July.
Clint Robinson – CRob will earn a September look after another good AAA season.
Kevin Chapman – Timmy control problems and an overuse of arms in the bullpen combined with a good season by Chapman will get him sometime in KC.

Wil Myers came in as a unanimous choice as PTP Preseason Player of the Year

PTP Minor League Player of the YearWil Myers I’ll go the easy route due to talent and an excellent right hand hitting environment at Werner Park the home of the Storm Chasers.

PTP Minor League Pitcher of the YearYordano Ventura again a product of environment plays into it with the Carolina league and Frawley park being extreme pitcher parks but we’ll also see Yordano’s stuff take a step forward.  Quick info of the big Royals starting pitching prospects only Danny Duffy outperformed Ventura’s 3.67 K/BB ratio in the Midwest league.

Positional Breakout Performer (Prospect who improves stock the most) - Jorge Bonifacio will etch his name next to Cheslor Cuthbert as one of the Royals top position prospects earning a promotion to Wilmington.

Pitching Breakout Performer –  this is a tough one for me because I have some confidence in a couple injured arms (Lamb, Simmons) coming back and having good years but I think I’ll settle with Sugar Ray Marimon.  Sugar Ray flashed stuff in the Midwest league last year holding opponents to a 7.5 H/9 rate as well as being apart of a no hitter.  Marimon won’t be a front of the rotation type but he could flash backend rotation talent with bullpen upside earning his way into the Top 20 of most Royals guides.

Positional Newcomer Award(Prospect who hasn’t played above Rookie ball that puts his name in the mix) – D’Andre Toney quickly becoming one my personal cheese balls Toney will outperform the other 2011 draftpicks and signings.  Unfortunately for him he’ll do most of his work in Short season ball until a Bonifacio promotion opens up a spot in the Kane County OF for him.

Pitching Newcomer AwardJake Junis we haven’t heard much about Junis after getting drafted but a low 90s FB, capable offspeed stuff and a season in his home area of Geneva will make the transition to pro ball easier for him.

Bubba Factor (Because the biggest name in the system deserves his own category)- Starling will struggle with winter weather in the cold midwest league against the college pitchers that comprise that league early but as the weather breaks in May and June he’ll enjoy better stats and show flashes of why KC drafted him.  Don’t expect a promotion in 2012.

Playoff Contenders

Personal Goal for site – My wife will be having our 3rd child which means a little less time at the games this year but I hope to provide you with plenty of video of Wil at Omaha and even get to a couple Kane County series.  I’m going to try to add video interviews with a few Royals prospects this year, something I haven’t done in the past.  Thanks again for reading and if you’re not already following me on Twitter please do so @ClintScoles or checkout my Youtube page to see the latest Royals prospects in action !

David Lesky

The Callups

PTP believes Montgomery will push his way into the 2012 rotation

Mike Montgomery – With the new pitching philosophy in the Royals organization, I think Montgomery is poised to have a huge 2012 season and will spend a good portion of it with the Royals. I don’t see him breaking camp with the club, but he’ll be up quickly.
Wil Myers – He’ll be at Omaha for most of the year, but should get at least a September call-up.
David Lough – I think he’s the first man called up as an injury replacement if anybody goes down.
Clint Robinson – Probably a September callup, but could be up earlier if Butler or Hosmer goes down.
Christian Colon – He won’t deserve it, but he’ll be up for a cup of coffee in September
Kevin Chapman/Patrick Keating – I put them together because they’ll both probably see some action, but won’t be ready for full-time big league action until 2013.

PTP Minor League Player of the Year It’ll be Wil Myers. The only thing that keeps him from this honor is getting called up to the big leagues too soon due to what will most likely be injury. His rough 2011 will be in the past very quickly and he’ll break out with a huge minor league season cementing his status as a top prospect.
PTP Minor League Pitcher of the Year Jason Adam…His ability to throw a mid-90s fastball with command combined with his off-speed stuff will make him very difficult to hit in Wilmington. I think Adam may be the biggest jumper of the season among pitchers.
Position Breakout Performer I’m not sure if a third round pick from pretty recently could be a breakout performer, but based on very little I think Michael Antonio will put together a big year in 2012. He’s already pretty much grown out of shortstop, but he has very real power and a developing batting eye at the plate.
Pitching Breakout Performer Jason Adam is the guy here again. I just love his pitchability to steal a term from the great Allard Baird.
Position Player Necomer Award I’m a big fan of D’Andre Toney like Clint. I love the fact that he plays defense and has a bat that just looks like it’ll come around to make him a serious prospect. He’s got some people to jump, but he’ll get there.
Pitching Newcomer Award He may be too high of a pick to be here, but I’m really interested to see Kyle Smith pitch in 2012. He seems to have a great feel for pitching and if he can command his off-speed stuff could move very quickly.
Bubba Factor To be honest, I think there’s a moderately decent chance that Starling is a massive bust. That’s obvious with everybody, but this season will go a long way toward figuring that out. He clearly has the tools, but the holes in his swing are pretty easy to find. I think he’ll have periods where he’s the best player in his league, but other times when he looks absolutely lost and there just won’t be a ton in between.
Playoff Contenders
NWA – they’ll do well in the first half before the attrition of callups
Personal Goal for the Site
I’d like to keep writing a lot because it’s what I love to do, but I hope to get into a little more statistical analysis which means more learning for me as well so I can better write about them. I’d like to develop a bit more of a personal relationship with some of the Royals players to get a better idea of how the game works from the inside rather than what I see on the outside. If you have anything you want me to write or any questions to ask, please don’t hesitate to find me on Twitter @DBLesky and just shoot me a tweet on there. Thanks for reading!

Levi Payton

The Callups
Mike Montgomery – Expect him to begin the year at Omaha. But if the big league rotation begins to get a bit leaky, expect him to get a shot by midseason.
Jake Odorizzi – Big believer in Odorizzi. He’ll probably start the year back in Northwest Arkansas, but could make a big leap all the way to the big leagues by September.
Wil Myers – Another guy pegged to start the year at Double-A, Myers’ 2011 season was just one cobbled up mess. He’ll return to healthy in 2012 and primed for a big year. I can see him getting a look in September.
Christian Colon – Hopefully a move to second base will help Colon settle in for a breakout in 2012. He’s been rather pedestrian so far as a pro with the bat, and that’s something he’ll need to improve on this year — he has a fine hit tool, now just needs the numbers to prove it. With Yuniesky Betancourt on a one-year deal in KC, expect Colon to spend most of 2012 in Omaha, with a chance to see KC in September.
PTP Minor League Player of the YearWil Myers. The obvious choice, right? He needs another solid year in the minors, and the Jeff Francoeur deal should help assure that happens. With that being the case, I think he’ll have a monster year.
PTP Minor League Pitcher of the YearJake Odorizzi. Very high on this kid. Really liked what I saw from him at Northwest Arkansas last year, even though he was up and down when I saw him. Stuff is advanced and he had a solid head on his shoulders. He can be a fast mover, but should spend all of the year in the minors.
Positional Breakout Performer (Prospect who improves stock the most) – Christian Colon. Just a hunch. Stock seems to have taken a dip due to his prolonged slumps at the dish. I want to believe this is the year we see him go on a tear with the bat.
Pitching Breakout PerformerChris Dwyer. OK, I’m going on another hunch here. Dwyer, long regarded as a top arm in the Royals system, has always been a point of confusion for me. I love the body. I love the stuff. He just looks like a big league ballplayer. Yet, the results just haven’t been there consistently enough for me to get enamored by the guy. I saw him in some really rough games last year, and one good one. For the sake of everyone, let’s hope Dwyer’s rough 2011 campaign can be written off as a bump in the road. The stuff is still there. I’m just going on a hunch and saying he begins to put it all back together in 2012.
Positional Newcomer Award (Prospect who hasn’t played above Rookie ball who puts his name in the mix) – Daniel Mateo. A switch-hitting second baseman/third baseman, Mateo swung the bat very well last year in Idaho Falls. The 6-1, 178 pound Dominican hit .348 with nine doubles, four triples and four homers while driving in 40 in 56 games for the Chukars. All of that coming off a disappointing 2010 year where he clubbed just .218 in the Arizona League. He’ll need to cut down on strikeouts and it would be nice to see him steal bases. Still, if Mateo can move up a level and continue to make strides, we could see his name pop up in conversations more often.
Pitching Newcomer AwardBryan Brickhouse. He gets the nod here from me because, to his advantage in this award category, I’ve already seen him pitch with my own two eyes and know that he has the capability of shredding low-level minor league lineups. Perhaps it’s in the name, but Brickhouse has that bulldog mentality I like from pitchers. He trusts his stuff, doesn’t back down and really wants to get better. I have to admit I was stoked when the Royals took him in the draft this year, as he was a pitcher I felt would go on to have a solid career.
Bubba Factor – It’s been an opinion of mine that Bubba Starling will struggle in his first minor league season. Don’t expect to see him tear the cover off the ball in the early going, though I believe he’ll end up posting solid numbers by the end of the season. Now that he is solely focusing on baseball, it should be fun to see how he progresses at the professional level.
Like Clint, I wouldn’t be surprised if Starling remains at the same level all season. The Royals have no reason to rush him.
Playoff Contenders – Omaha. Northwest Arkansas. Wilmington.
Personal Goal for site – This will be my first baseball season writing for PTP, so I’ll be trying to find my niche here on the site. For the most part, expect a little bit of this and that from me — at least in the beginning. I attend quite a few minor league games throughout the Texas League (Double-A) each year, so you’ll get plenty of content from me in that regard. Of course, there will be plenty of big league stuff from me, and I’ll attempt to have something up on a more regular basis throughout the season. If you follow me on Twitter @LeviPayton, you got the news first regarding the Manny Pina call-up last year. Can I do it again this year? Follow me and find out, please. (Shameless plug)

Greg Schaum
Call ups:
I don’t know if I should use call ups or debuts- I think we will see guys like Greg Golson in the big league this season but that won’t be his debut. The other guys seems to do debuts so I will follow suit
Mike Montgomery-  He will look great in spring and Ned will be tempted to bring him home with the big league club. But, the right thing to do is to have him get to Omaha and prove his stuff is back. He is working on refining his “put away” pitches this winter and we might see him dump the curve in favor of a slider/cutter this spring. Mentally, I know he is ready to go and learned a valuable lesson last year. I think he debuts in July
Ryan Verdugo- The lefty the Royals acquired from San Francisco will spend the entire season at Omaha and get a look in September
Kevin Chapman- The power lefty from the University of Florida will have to be added to the 40 man but he will impress many this spring and get a call up in August
Jake Odorizzi- AA to start the year with a finish at AAA- we always forget how many pitchers you need during a season with injuries or performance and Jake will see time in the big leagues in August
Position Players:
Clint Robinson- I would love to see him get an opportunity elsewhere and I could see that happen with a spring trade but he will get the call if there is an injury to Butler or Hosmer. Hopefully that does not happen and we see him in September
David Lough- Ditto what I said about Clint. Lough is behind on the depth chart so much that we won’t see him until September. Unless, he lights the lamp so much at Omaha that he forces the issue
Christian Colon- I think he bounces back with a solid year at AA and AAA and we see him in September
Wil Myers- I think Wil has a huge year and I never would have guessed we would have seen Hosmer and Perez as early as we did. So, as much as I think he could spend the season in the minors I would not be surprised if we see him sooner if one of the OF goes down with an injury.

Minor League Offensive Player of the Year
- Wil Myers is a no brainer for me….I think he takes the next step to being an elite prospect this season

Minor League Pitcher of the Year
- Greg Billo is not a bonafide pitching prospect but I still expect him to dominate (statistic wise) at Wilmington this season. The real test for Greg will be when he gets to AA

Positional Breakout Performance
- Yem Prades has all the tools you look at in a breakout performer. He has a great baseball body and the skills to drive the ball over the fence and steal some bases. I don’t know if he starts the season at AA but I believe he finishes the season there and will be an integral part of their playoff run.

Pitching Breakout Performer
- Kevin Chapman will put it all together and resemble Nasty Boy Norm Charlton. He has the stuff to tease the brass to believe he is a starter but the same brass will remain calm and recognize his injury history and keep him in the pen. The former top shelf high school star will put up huge numbers out of the pen pitching out of the Naturals and Storm Chasers pen.
Positional Newcomer- Carlos Garcia could see time at SS this season and he certainly has the glove to play there. He has been mostly a SS since choosing the Royals out of Venezuela. He has really raised some eyebrows lately with his speed and glove and even though the Royals suddenly have a plethora of players at the SS position they feel Garcia should be added to the mix. He has added some muscle to his frame and while he enters the season with zero home runs as a pro I expect that to change this season. He can also run so we can expect to see some bags being stolen by young Carlos.
Pitching Newcomer- Kyle Smith The body comps to Tim Hudson are easy. But, he also has the ability to pitch like Hudson someday with a close to mid 9’s fastball and an excellent curve. I think he will arrive at Kane County in May and have an excellent season.

Bubba may struggle at Kane County despite stellar tools

Bubba Factor- I always said the very best thing to happen to Bubba would be for him to get out of high school baseball. I think he was so good here that he really developed some bad habits. He became HR happy and resembled a big dude on a softball field trying to take everything over the LF fence regardless of the location of the pitch. I never saw him shorten his swing or go the other way. I think he will have a tough go this season and it will be a good thing. On and off the field he has time to grow up and this season will be a valuable lesson in that. I think he will strike out once every 4 times up and hit 15 HR but the .avg and obp will be low. Please don’t think I am saying he is a bust because he isn’t. But, for the first time in his life he will struggle and that my friends is a very, very good thing.

Playoff Contenders:
Kane County will make it with a prospect laden club
Wilmington misses the playoffs but mgr Vance Wilson will keep the team playing hard and begin to show why he might be the future mgr of the big league club
Northwest Arkansas will miss the playoffs for the first time in 3 years as they miss the first half title and lose to much talent to win the second half.
Omaha makes the playoffs again but this time they lose players to the big league club for the playoff run and grab guys from NWA
Personal goals for the site: Make sure our new network we will be a part of kicks off smoothly….Recruit a few more writers for the site. Looking for people to cover the teams at Wilmington, Kane County, Idaho Falls, Burlington NC, Surprise, and in the Dominican. Begin to receive more great player photos from our great fan base to use on the site. I want to add another writer to pick on some of the more fun categories of the site. Have a easy to access player encyclopedia of everyone in the system with every article or picture we have of said player.  Follow me @Greg_Schaum and follow our game action @pinetarpress for in depth Royals info and thank you all.

About The Author

I grew up on the mean gravel roads of Iowa where I started my love for baseball from the age of 2. George Brett and the voice of Denny Matthews deepened my love even more for the Royals as my father and I spent summers listening to the team on our deck or in the car on our way to or from my little league and high school games. Sports was always the common bond that my father and I enjoyed and the Royals were in the center of that.I currently live in La Vista with my wife, two sons, two dogs and a pair of gross cats where we are grinding through until we can move somewhere warm when we retire. I own Casino Cab Company and Bluffs Affordable Auto Repair in Council Bluffs trying to build my 1% empire. If you are in the area you can find me at Omaha Storm Chasers games on most nights or just follow me on twitter @ClintScoles.

Number of Entries : 856

Comments (12)

  • DeepDixieBlue

    Glad to hear the note on Monty dumping the curve for a slider/cutter. Overdue IMO. The slider is much easier to command and if a guy already has a good offspeed pitch (Monty with his change) the curveball won’t be missed much.

    No mention above of Will Smith. I know he doesn’t have the same stuff as Duffy/Monty/Lamb/Dwyer/Odorizzi but he seems like a good candidate for the bullpen at some point this season.

    The Royals have been pretty consistent in saying that they like to see their pitching prospects get at least 400 IP in the minors before considering a MLB promotion. Here’s where the following stand (Duffy had 350, btw, when promoted):
    W Smith – 513 IP
    Montgomery – 396
    Odorizzi – 335
    Dwyer – 252
    Lamb – 251

    I’m anxious to see how John Lamb rebounds from TJ this season. If he had stayed healthy last year he’d be squarely in the mix for a rotation job with the big team this spring.

    There’s an awful lot of talent in the list above. I’m really glad DM has resisted the urge to trade some of it for a veteran starter.

    Great column btw.

  • Greg Schaum

    We have had some fun topics in the past like the year of the card, great moments (or even random games) in royals history…..stuff like that


    I mean what categories…..


    oh wow congrats….


    Can you expand on this as well….”I want to add another writer to pick on some of the more fun categories of the site.”

  • Greg Schaum

    We signed a deal to be a part of


    What do you mean by…..”Make sure our new network we will be a part of kicks off smoothly”…..

    Great post…..Clint for Prospect “hard on” shows again for Bonifacio :o)

  • mmeade17

    I like the Bubba sections. There seems to be a common theme between them that Bubba will struggle and perhaps needs to. I find it interesting to note that those who seem to bust most often struggle overcoming adversity, and I wonder how Bubba will handle his when it inevitably comes. I’m guessing he’s never struggled with any sport he’s ever played. What happens when he hits .250/.280/.350? Will he have the resolve to turn that into a positive? I think the only way he busts is if he can’t handle struggling, if he can’t take those obstacles and turn them into learning experiences.

    Great posts!

  • PercentageUK

    I will definately Subscribe to this season!

    Good work boys!

  • revisroyalsfan

    Excellent post. Really enjoy the projection and where you see some of the well known guys. Favorite part is the break out performers – easy to project a guy like Myers or Montgomery. When we start talking Antonio, Mateo, Parades, – that is what I love about reading this site.

    I too am a big fan of Kyle Smith. Think getting him in 4th round will look really good down the road. He is the type of guy that will be going to college during new CBA. I also like Antonio to play for Kane County and settle in at 3B. With KC’s depth at SS in lower minors, Antonio will move sooner or later. I am excited about a potential Kane County OF of Starling and Bonafacio.

    I live in Colorado so I am hoping to catch Idaho Falls when they play the Rockies in Grand Junction. I would expect more draft picks to play Rookie League with signing deadline moved up.

  • jim fetterolf

    Great post, guys.

  • Clint Scoles

    Thank you Shogun

  • kcShogun

    my favorite post of the year! :)

    i love these type of conversations….royals minor league growth, projections and roster/callup predictions. very detailed and exactly what i’ve been waiting for.

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