Kansas City Royals: Top 5 Prospects

Bill Robbins@bill_kc28Correspondent INovember 27, 2011

Kansas City Royals: Top 5 Prospects

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    With the 2012 MLB season still over four months away, I've decided to examine the top prospects that the Kansas City Royals have in their farm system coming into this year.

    This list has seen a few changes to it since last season, as many of the organizations' top minor-leaguers were called up during the year.

    Also, I purposely did not include any players that are likely to start for the Royals big league team to start the 2012 season.

    Here is my version of the top five prospects currently in the Kansas City Royals farm system.

5. John Lamb

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    Behind the No. 4 player on this list, Mike Montgomery, Lamb is the next best left-handed pitcher in the Royals farm system right now.

    He's a big strikeout pitcher, with 9.0 strikeouts per nine innings for his minor-league career.

    He had a career ERA of 2.86 in the minors before injuring his elbow and finding out that he needed Tommy John surgery early last season.

    Because of this, I don't expect him to be in Kansas City for at least two years.

    ETA to the Royals: Late 2013

4. Mike Montgomery

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    Many thought that Montgomery would have made his major league debut last season for the Royals.

    Instead, he played the entire season for Triple-A Omaha, struggling for nearly the entire year.

    He went 5-11 with a 5.32 ERA, and had a disappointing 1.87 strikeout-to-walk ratio for the year as well.

    However, since he is so talented, I think that Montgomery has the ability to pull to be the 2012 version of Aaron Crow and make the big league team out of spring training.

    ETA to the Royals: Early 2012

3. Bubba Starling

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    The hometown kid, Bubba Starling, has the potential to be an elite outfielder for this franchise for years to come.

    He was one of the best high school athletes to come out of the Kansas City Area in a long time, since he starred not only on the diamond, but also the basketball court and the gridiron as well.

    It should take him a little while to get adjusted to minor league ball, but once he does, look out.

    I see him staying in the minors more than anyone else on this list, but he also has a chance to become the greatest big league player out of anyone on here as well.

    ETA to the Royals: Mid 2014

2. Jake Odorizzi

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    Odorizzi was the centerpiece of the Zack Greinke trade that sent the former Royals ace to the Milwaukee Brewers last off-season.

    He has a very powerful arm for a right-hander, and is the most talented pitcher currently in KC's system.

    After struggling some last season at Double-A Northwest Arkansas with a 4.72 ERA in 12 starts, I look for him to rebound this season and pitch very well.

    He should be in Kansas City in a couple years.

    ETA to the Royals: Mid 2013

1. Wil Myers

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    Outfielder Wil Myers is by far the organization's top prospect at this time.

    Originally drafted as a catcher, Myers has since been converted into an outfielder, and has all the tools to get it done at the big league level.

    The former first-round pick has a .296 career batting average in the minors, and is one of the best pure hitters that has been in the Royals system in years.

    Even though his power is still developing, look for him to be up with the big league team before long

    ETA to the Royals: Late 2012