Forgot Log-in or  Password? |  Help  Not a member, Register Now!
      
Fantasy Football Today
Fantasy Football Today Blog
Gameday Inactives
2014 Draft Prep Guide
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Get Your Draft Board
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Scores
Fantasy Games
Playoff Challenge
Commissioner
Prize Leagues
Free
Office Pool Manager
Game Pick'em
Player Challenge
Fantasy Baseball Today
Fantasy Baseball Today Blog
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Rankings
Projections
Schedules
Probable Pitchers
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injuries
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Message Boards
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Downloadable Draft Kit
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
No Fantasy Teams Found
 
 
 

2011 Fantasy outlooks: Kansas City Royals

  •  

Listen to our latest Fantasy Baseball Podcast!

You'd think Royals fans would want to throw in the towel after another last-place finish to cap a 25-year run without a playoff appearance. You'd think the trading of 2009 Cy Young winner Zack Greinke, the team's one and only star player, would represent the proverbial last straw. You'd think.

But now is actually the perfect time to jump on the bandwagon with the organization on the verge of fielding its best team since the days of George Brett and Brett Saberhagen.

Follow us on ...
Get the latest news and analysis from the most informed Fantasy staff in the industry by following us on Twitter and Facebook.
@cbsfantasynews
facebook.com/cbssportsfantasy

Oh, yes. On the surface, the Royals appear a collection has-beens and never-weres posing as something competitive, but what lurks beneath in the minor-league system is an embarrassment of riches, the long-awaited payoff for all those early-round draft picks and departed superstars.

True, the only prospect with a chance of making a significant impact this season is Mike Moustakas, but by the end of 2012, Eric Hosmer and William Myers will be anchoring the middle of lineup, and Mike Montgomery, Danny Duffy, John Lamb, Chris Dwyer, Aaron Crow and Jake Odorizzi, one of the key pieces of the Greinke deal, will be trying to force each other to the bullpen.

It's Tampa Bay all over again. Shoot, it's Atlanta all over again, and it's almost, almost time.

Of course, Fantasy owners care mostly about the here and now, and as of now (and here), the Royals have only two must-draft players: Billy Butler and Joakim Soria. But the blank canvass the Royals have created will allow some virtual unknowns to emerge off the waiver wire. Players like Jeff Francis, Jeff Francoeur and Vin Mazzaro get a second chance with a new organization, and players like Alex Gordon, Luke Hochevar and Kila Ka'aihue get one last chance to show the Royals they can contribute.

If any of them do, by this time next year, the Royals will have gone from having no idea who to put in the lineup to having no idea who to leave out.

Breakout ... Billy Butler, 1B

Perhaps you say this should have happened last year. Perhaps you lost heart when, instead of continuing his upward climb, Butler regressed from 21 homers to 15 and from 93 RBI to 78. But you have to remember he has yet to turn 25. He already has better bat control, his strikeouts dropping from 103 to 78, than most middle-of-the-order hitters ever achieve in their careers, suggesting his career-high .318 batting average is just the beginning. He may never develop into a 30-homer threat, but if he's competing for batting titles and smacking 20 homers, that's more or less elite, even at a deep position like first base. The Royals showed their faith in him by signing him to a four-year extension, which means they want him to be a part of next year's metamorphosis and not just another trade chip. If a perpetually rebuilding organization is willing to buy into him long-term, why can't you?

Sleeper ... Kila Ka'aihue, 1B

Ka'aihue has never gotten much attention from the scouts, but you've no doubt heard his name mentioned more than once over the last few years. You've heard it because his numbers demand recognition. They're insane. At long last, the Royals decided to see what the 26-year-old could do, promoting him in August and giving him everyday at-bats. True, he hit only .217, which some will claim as another victory for the scouts over the statisticians, but he clearly got more comfortable over time, hitting .261 with six homers and an .878 OPS in September. This is it for Ka'aihue, his one great chance to stake his claim before the big rush of talent, and the Royals are giving him every opportunity to do so, leaving first base open for him all offseason. He could amount to nothing, but if everything clicks for him the way it did in the minors, he could be the hottest waiver claim this summer.

Can't-miss prospect ... Eric Hosmer, 1B

The Royals have more candidates for this category than any other organization, but if you want the one prospect least likely to disappoint and most likely to become early-round material in Fantasy, it's Hosmer. LASIK surgery turned the 2009 disappointment into more than the Royals could have hoped for when they selected him third overall in 2008. He doesn't have any discernable flaws, striking out only 66 times in 520 at-bats and repeatedly driving the ball the other way instead of trying to yank everything out of the park the way young power hitters so often do. He has already mastered Double-A, which is usually the biggest reality check for minor leaguers, so Triple-A is little more than a formality. He will arrive before the end of 2011, and by all indications, he will succeed right away. You'd have to stash him too long to justify drafting him in a seasonal mixed league, but you'll want to claim him as soon as he gets the call.

Kansas City Royals Fantasy Outlook
Projected Lineup Pos. Projected Rotation
1 Lorenzo Cain CF 1 Luke Hochevar RH
2 Mike Aviles 3B 2 Jeff Francis LH
3 Billy Butler DH 3 Kyle Davies RH
4 Kila Ka'aihue 1B 4 Bruce Chen LH
5 Jeff Francoeur RF 5 Vin Mazzaro RH
6 Alex Gordon LF Alt Sean O'Sullivan RH
7 Brayan Pena C
Bullpen Breakdown
8 Chris Getz 2B CL Joakim Soria RH
9 Alcides Escobar SS SU Robinson Tejeda RH
Top bench options RP Blake Wood RH
R Wilson Betemit CI RP Jeremy Jeffress RH
R Melky Cabrera OF RP Jesse Chavez RH
Rookies/Prospects Age Pos. 2010 high Destination
1 Mike Moustakas 22 3B Triple-A Triple-A
Former second overall pick finally blew up with .999 OPS last year. Should reach bigs later this year.
2 Eric Hosmer 21 1B Double-A Double-A
Third overall pick in '08 may be best hitter in all of minors. Age won't stop him from debuting in 2011.
3 Danny Duffy 22 SP Double-A Double-A
Improved stock last year. Gets nod here over team's other pitching prospects mostly because he's the oldest.
4 Mike Montgomery 21 SP Double-A Double-A
In virtual tie with Duffy, Lamb, and Dwyer for title of future ace but was drafted highest of the bunch.
5 William Myers 20 OF Class A Double-A
Converted catcher showed potential on level of Hosmer last year. Position change should hasten arrival.
Best of the rest: John Lamb, SP; Chris Dwyer, SP; Christian Colon, SS; Jake Odorizzi, SP; Aaron Crow, SP; Lucas May, C; Jeremy Jeffress, RP; Jarrod Dyson, OF; Brett Eibner, OF; Johnny Giavotella, 2B; Louis Coleman, RP; Timothy Melville, SP; Tim Collins, RP; Patrick Keating, RP; Greg Holland, RP; Salvador Perez, C; Clint Robinson, 1B; Jeff Bianchi, SS; David Lough, OF; Will Smith, SP; Noel Arguelles, SP; and Kevin Pucetas, SP.

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us via Twitter . You can e-mail us your Fantasy Baseball questions to DMFantasyBaseball@cbs.com . Be sure to put Team outlooks in the subject field. Please include your full name, hometown and state.

Get player news notifications, manage your team and check scores
- all updated in real time. Download the CBS Fantasy App.

  •  
 
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre
 
 
Player News
Giants pitcher Tim Lincecum (back) headed for MRI
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(12:04 pm ET) Giants pitcher Tim Lincecum, who left Game 2 of the World Series due to back tightness, will undergo an MRI Thursday, sources connected to the team told CBSSports.com Baseball Insider Jon Heyman.

Twins' Chris Colabello set for MRI, X-rays on injured thumb
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(11:20 am ET) Twins first baseman/outfielder Chris Colabello is scheduled to undergo an MRI and X-rays this week on his ailing right thumb, according to the Pioneer Press. Colabello said he still feels numbness and tingling in his right thumb as a result of getting jammed on a pitch during an April 23 game against the Rays, according to the Worcester Telegram.

Indians expected to pick up Mike Aviles' option
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12:36 am ET) The Indians are expected to pick up Mike Aviles' option for next season, according to the Northeast Ohio Media Group. 

The team has until shortly after the World Series to decide whether to pick up a $3.5 million club option on Aviles. It's expected the club will exercise that option. Aviles hit .247/.273/.343 over 344 at-bats. 


Tigers expected to keep Joakim Soria
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12:32 am ET) The Tigers are expected to exercise their option on pitcher Joakim Soria, according to MLB.com.

Soria has a $7 million club option for next season. The team will need to make a decision on the option shortly after the end of the World Series. While general manager Dave Dombrowski said the final decision hasn't been made yet, he hinted at the club picking up Soria's contract. "It's a situation where we look at him as being an important acquisition toward this [coming] year also," Soria said. 

Soria posted a 3.25 ERA over 44 1/3 innings split between Texas and Detroit. 


Giants will know more about Tim Lincecum Thursday
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12:29 am ET) The Giants will have more information on pitcher Tim Lincecum Thursday, according to Bleacher Report.

Lincecum left after his back tightened up in the eighth inning. The club expects him to be OK, but will have a better idea about the severity of his injury Thursday. Lincecum was able to pitch 1 2/3 innings before departing. 


Royals' Lorenzo Cain won't stop hitting
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12:06 am ET) Royals outfielder Lorenzo Cain continued to assault baseballs Wednesday against the Giants.

Cain has been on a tear during the postseason, and that didn't stop Wednesday. After doubling in his first at-bat, Cain would come around to score the team's first run of the night. He would later single to lead off the sixth inning, and would come around to score again later in the frame. Cain finished 2 for 4, with two runs scored and no RBI. 


Royals' Omar Infante comes up big Wednesday
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(10/22/2014) Royals infielder Omar Infante came up big Wednesday against the Giants.

Infante wasted no time getting to work, doubling in his first at-bat. He would come around to score during the frame, giving the Royals a 2-1 lead. Infante would strike again in the bottom of the sixth. With a man on base, Infante belted a 98 mph fastball out to left for the two-run shot. He finished 2 for 3, with two runs scored and two RBI. 


Royals' Billy Butler drives in two Wednesday
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(10/22/2014) Royals designated hitter Billy Butler drove in two runs Wednesday against the Giants.

Butler struck in his first at-bat. With men on first and second, Butler managed to tie the game on a single to the left fielder. He would find himself in the exact same situation in the sixth inning, and responded in the same fashion. Butler again singled in a run on a hit to left field. He would finish 2 for 3, with no runs scored and two RBI. 


Royals' Yordano Ventura gives up two runs Wednesday
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(10/22/2014) Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura allowed two runs Wednesday against the Giants.

Ventura gave up two runs on eight hits over 5 1/3 innings. He struck out two and did not issue any walks during the outing. Ventura got himself into trouble immediately. To lead off the game, Gregor Blanco deposited a 98 mph fastball out to right for a solo home run. Ventura would settle in over the next two innings before giving up another run in the fourth. With a man on second, Ventura allowed an RBI double against Brandon Belt. Ventura would pitch into the sixth inning, but was pulled after giving up two singles. He threw 87 pitches during the outing and did not factor into the decision.


Giants SP Jake Peavy gives up four runs in World Series Game 2 loss
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10/22/2014) Giants pitcher Jake Peavy was saddled with a loss in Game of the World Series Wednesday, allowing four earned runs on six hits and two walks in five-plus innings while striking out one in his team's 7-2 defeat against the Royals.

Peavy (1-1) ran in to trouble immediately Wednesday, giving up a run on three hits and a walk in the first inning after the offense had given him a 1-0 lead in the top of the first. He surrendered another run on an RBI double in the second, but the offense evened the game in the fourth. Peavy opened the sixth inning by giving up a single and a walk before being removed, and the Royals went on to post five runs in the inning en route to running out to an insurmountable lead.

Peavy has posted a 3.68 ERA and 6:8 K:BB ratio in 14 2/3 innings over three postseason starts. The two teams head into Friday's Game 3 tied 1-1 in the series.


 
 
 
Rankings