Royals aren’t Dodgering Latin America Reviewed by Momizat on . [caption id="" align="alignleft" width="213" caption="Fernando kicked off a 30 year run of foreign born Dodgers starters"][/caption] I read an interesting post [caption id="" align="alignleft" width="213" caption="Fernando kicked off a 30 year run of foreign born Dodgers starters"][/caption] I read an interesting post Rating:
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Royals aren’t Dodgering Latin America

Fernando kicked off a 30 year run of foreign born Dodgers starters

I read an interesting post awhile back by Mike Scioscia’s Tragic Illness about the Dodgers and their current lack of international talent.  Spending by the team that discovered Pedro Martinez, Fernando Valenzuela and Hideo Nomo was at an alltime low.  Owner Frank McCourt while using the club as his own personal piggybank cut not only one of its biggest assets (international scouting) but also what defined their organizational identity during the last 30 years.  But as you already know when you clicked on this link this isn’t about what the Dodgers are doing wrong but it’s about what the Royals are doing right.

The Royals for a extremely long stretch of time were not cultivating much of any international talent of their own, spending little despite having big time evidence in their face (Carlos Beltran) that spending in Latin America works.  The Royals with their less is more approach placed just three home grown international signings on the BA Top 10 list from 2001 to 2011.  The Royals knowing that fact made international scouting a big priority re-establishing a relationship in the Dominican Republic while opening a new academy and hiring Rene Francisco to run international operations.  That decision is starting to pay big dividends.

While the arrival of Eric Hosmer and Mike Moustakas were eagerly anticipated events in the Royals Twitterverse one could argue the biggest surprises at the major and minor league levels this last year came out of the international signee club.  Salvador Perez and Kelvin Herrera ripped through multiple levels exceeding all expectations and showing that major league success is something that could come very quickly for the soon to be 22 year old’s.  Sal is the poster boy for the international swarm the Royals are assembling but his 148 At Bats were a few too many for him to be placed on the Baseball America Top 10 list.  Even without Sal the group Rene and Dayton assembled has matched 10 years of BA list in one year by placing Herrera, Cheslor Cuthbert and Yordano Ventura on the soon to be released 2012 list.

Is Jorge Bonifacio the next Latin stud?

That Latin infusion and the talent behind it like Jorge Bonifacio (BP #8 Royals prospect), Elier Hernandez (3.1M signee) and others is a major reason why the Royals will be in the upper third of organization prospect list this year and for years to come.  The restraints put on international spending should create an advantage for clubs like the Royals, Mariners, Yankees and Rangers who have been heavily involved recently.  Prospects knowing the relationships that those teams have established are willing to take a little less (Elier took less) to sign with them because of the trust they have established as well as those teams knack for discovering less costly high return prospects also gives them a step ahead.  A international draft is likely in the future for baseball but until it arrives and even when it does Kansas City lucky for us is one of the small group of team with an advantage in any international arena.

My Top 10 Royals International Signees
#1 Cheslor Cuthbert
#2 Kelvin Herrera
#3 Elier Hernandez
#4 Jorge Bonifacio 
#5 Noel Arguelles
#6 Yordano Ventura
#7 Orlando Calixte
#8 Humberto Arteaga
#9 Carlos Garcia
#10 Yem Prades  


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 (8)

  • Clint Scoles

    How do you think the new CBA on international spending will affect the Royals? Will they put big dollars on a few players like Hernandez, Mondesi, Arteagua or spread around to 20-30 players?
    It is a year to year deal depending on talent available. This obviously is made to drive prices back down. Maybe a kid who got 2M or 1M this year has to take 500K that sort of thing first. On top of that those three plus Calixte are the big money guys the Royals have signed quite a few of their intl talent has been signed for 100K or less. That shows a little can go a long way. Teams knowing they have no chance to sign big money players will look to trade for organizational fillers for money and if they are smart they’ll use it to their advantage. Example – If I’m the Red Sox and know I can’t sign the big name talent that year because the Yanks and Royals have a better relationship why wouldn’t I just tell KC I’ll give you 1.5M worth of my spending allotment for your High A pitcher (Volz like) who has a shot in BP down the road. Now KC can go to the table with 4.4M instead of the Yanks 2.9. That’s just one way to manipulate the money in the CBA.

    The biggest difference is Rene, his staff, Dayton and Glass’s commitment to it. It is easy to say they are gonna do something but they went out and hired one of the best, spent the money on a facility and stuck to the plan. It sounds cliche but that is the real reason they’ve stuck with the process and it has worked.

  • revisroyalsfan

    Posted this question at a couple of other places so might as well here: How do you think the new CBA on international spending will affect the Royals? Will they put big dollars on a few players like Hernandez, Mondesi, Arteagua or spread around to 20-30 players?

    No coincidence that surge in KC’s farm system is based on international presence. The KC top 10 listed here would be much better than a 1/3 of MLB’s teams entire top 10.

    What has been the biggest difference with Royals scouting Latin America in last 5-10 years?

  • NMRoyalFan

    It’s impressive that Arguelles is only #5, seem to remember that everyone was incredulous when the Royals signed him. BTW, why does Chelsor Cuthbert and Jason Adam look so much alike in the pictures of the Top 20?

  • Clint Scoles

    One quick note that I didn’t mention teams under the new CBA are allowed to trade some of their signing allowance. Meaning a team could trade a lower level prospect for international allowance money. That is a good strategy for a team like the White Sox who have built a terrible name internationally after cheating and stealing from Latin prospects. They get a player in their farm system and all they flip is money that they likely would have a hard time spending anyway.

  • Clint Scoles

    I think we can say that the Royals International Top 10 prospect list is better than the Tigers, Twins, White Sox and Indians regular Top 10s.

  • Clint Scoles

    Tons of depth. No Sal, No Yambati, No Mondesi that they spent 2+ on

  • Greg Schaum

    Crazy that we have a top 10 list without Robinson Yambati who was the flavor of the time (this time last year) I expect Yambati to have a bounce back year in 12

  • Greg Schaum

    another guy that took less is Carlos Garcia ( #9 on your list) who had a better offer from a NL club

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