Kansas City Royals: 5 Players Who Could Break out This Season

Bill Robbins@bill_kc28Correspondent IFebruary 3, 2012

Kansas City Royals: 5 Players Who Could Break out This Season

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    As we inch closer to the start of the 2012 MLB regular season, it's time to start looking at potential breakout players for each team.

    The Kansas City Royals have many candidates, considering their roster is still very young and the fact that they had several players who made their major debuts last season.

    Here are five players that could have a break out season for the Royals in 2012.

Mike Moustakas

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    Third baseman Mike Moustakas was called up in June of last season and really struggled for a while with the Royals.

    Then, something changed toward the end of the season.

    Moustakas hit four homers in his last 13 games and batted .352 for the month of September.

    This had to be an encouraging sign for the Royals, as they should fully expect "Moose" to hit 20-plus home runs and really start to show off his power this season.

Danny Duffy

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    Left-handed starter Danny Duffy made his major league debut last season with the Royals, but left much to be desired on the field.

    He went 4-8 with a 5.64 ERA for the year, and struggled with control throughout the campaign.

    One thing that Duffy didn't have a problem with was throwing strikes, and he is talented enough to mow down big league hitters with his arsenal of pitches.

    With already having one year of MLB experience under his belt, there's a chance that he could put together a great sophomore season if he starts controlling his pitches better.

Mike Montgomery

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    Lefty prospect Mike Montgomery was supposed to make the big league roster last season along with the rest of his former teammates at Double-A Northwest Arkansas.

    Instead, he only advanced to Triple-A Omaha and went 5-11 with a disappointing 5.32 ERA in 27 starts.

    However, Montgomery has all the talent in the world and is just one strong showing in the spring away from making the Royals' 25-man roster.

    I look for him to make a Aaron Crow-type turn around this season and finally make an impact on the big league team in a big way.

Johnny Giavotella

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    Giavotella came up in the later part of last season, only to see himself struggle on offense.

    Out of the four rookie starters the Royals had last season, Johnny G easily played the worst.

    He might be less talented then many of his other offensive teammates, but Giavotella is a very scrappy player and has a higher ceiling than many would think.

    I expect him to adjust to major league pitching this season, while hitting around .300 and playing solid defense at second base for this team.

Lorenzo Cain

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    When center fielder Melky Cabrera was traded to the Giants earlier this offseason, the Lorenzo Cain era in Kansas City had officially begun.

    The 26-year-old ex-Brewers prospect will finally get to show off his talents for the Royals in an everyday role this season.

    Cain has been a career minor-leaguer, but has the talent to become a solid player at the major league level.

    He is very good on both offense and defense and will likely be playing with a chip on his shoulder this year, considering that he will get to prove to Milwaukee why they made a mistake when they got rid of him just over a year ago.