KANSAS CITY, MO - SEPTEMBER 21: General manager Dayton Moore (R) of the Kansas City Royals and owner David Glass watch batting practice before a game against the Detroit Tigers at Kauffman Stadium on September 21, 2011 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images)

MLB Draft 2012: Kansas City Royals Select Kyle Zimmer, Sam Selman

The Kansas City Royals have the fifth overall selection in the 2012 MLB Rule IV Draft, the same spot they held in the 2011 edition when they chose Bubba Starling.

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2012 MLB Draft: Kansas City Royals Sign 3rd Round Pick Colin Rodgers

The Kansas City Royals are apparently wasting no time when it comes to signing the latest draft class, and the team is likely anxious to get the players into their respective camps and minor league placements to see what they have in their total investment from the 2012 MLB Draft. Colin Rodgers is the latest to reportedly sign, according to Baseball America's Jim Callis.

The Royals invested heavily in starting pitching with the first few picks of the draft, and it's clear that the team needs significant help at the Major League level in the starting rotation. Rodgers will take some time to advance, but he's another solid arm to add to the number of possibilities.

Rodgers joins Sam Selman and Kyle Zimmer as the pitchers to watch from this draft class. You can check Matt Hays' profile of him here.

To discuss the Royals draft, head over to Royals Review and join the discussion.


MLB Draft 2012: Kyle Zimmer Reportedly Close To Signing With Kansas City Royals

The Kansas City Royals might not wait that long to ink their first round choice of the 2012 MLB Draft in Kyle Zimmer. Word is coming out from the Royals front office that it should be any time now compared to last year when Bubba Starling’s negotiations went down to the wire.

Zimmer still has to get healthy after experiencing some woes near the end of his season at the University of San Francisco. The Dons ace was one of the best pitchers in college baseball in 2011, but a hamstring injury and less impressive performances down the stretch raised some concerns. Still the Royals love the overall product and took Zimmer at No. 5.

The Royals J.J. Picollo said the difference between signing now or a month from now will make a major difference in his development within the organization and could even help him advance a level next season.

If you waited until August 13 or 15 last year, you probably weren’t going to play those last two weeks (of the minor-league season), more than likely," Picollo said. "Now, you see an opportunity to get a short season in. For a college player, it might be the difference in starting in the Midwest League next year versus the Carolina League."

To discuss the Royals draft, head over to Royals Review and join the discussion.


2012 MLB Draft: Video Highlights For Kansas City's Latest Picks

As you saw in an earlier update, the Kansas City Royals have now finished the 2012 MLB Draft today with rounds 16-40. Let's take a better look at each player-

16th round Austin Fairchild '0" 175 lbs LHP St. Thomas HS Houston, TX Committed to TCU

17th - Ariel Estades 5'11" 150 lbs OF Puerto Rico Baseball Academy Arecibo, PR

18th - Justin Alleman 6'2" 195 lbs RHP Holt HS Holt, MI Committed to Michigan State

19th - Andrew Triggs 6'4" 210 lbs RHP USC

20th - Shane Halley 6'1" 200 lbs RHP U of Virginia

21st - Matthew Strahm 6'4" 180 lbs Neosho CC, KS Committed to Nebraska

22nd - Alec Mills 6'4" 185 lbs RHP U of Tennessee-Martin

23rd - Kevin Allen 6'1" 205 RHP TCU

24th - Beau Maggi 6'1" 208 lbs C Arizona State

25th - Matthew Tenuta 6'4" 205 lbs LHP Apex HS Cary, NC Committed to North Carolina State

26th - Mark Donato 6'2" 225 lbs 1B Indian River State College, FL

27th - Ashton Goudeau 6'6" 205 lbs RHP Maplewoods CC, MO Committed to Louisiana-Lafayette

28th - Sam Bates 6'5" 230 lbs 1B U of Arkansas

29th - John Walter 6'5" 225 lbs RHP Penn State

30th - Ethan Chapman 6'0" 180 lbs OF Cal-State San Bernadino

31st - Hayden Edwards 6'7" 180 lbs Blue Valley HS Overland Park, KS Committed to Kansas

32nd - Patrick Conroy 6'4" 218 lbs LHP Marin CC, CA

33rd - Evan Phillips 6'2" 215 lbs RHP Clayton HS Clayton, NC Committed to UNC-Wilmington

34th - Marsalis Holloway 5'11" 170 lbs OF Columbia State CC, TN

35th - Tyler Joyner '11" 185 lbs LHP East Carolina

36th - Raphael Andrades 6'1" 195 lbs OF Lincoln HS Tallahassee, FL Committed to Florida

37th - Jake Newberry 6'2" 195 lbs RHP Mira Mesa HS San Diego, CA

38th - Carlos Urena 6'2" 200 lbs OF Whitehall HS, PA

39th - Justin Leeson 6'3" 200 lbs OF Georgetown U

40th -Taylor Kaczmarek 6'2" 225 lbs RHP South Mountain CC (AZ)

The gem of the second day certainly has to be Fairchild, a top 500 prospect by Baseball America. He has a low 90's fastball that can reach 94. Also throws a curve and slider than will need continued work. His high school coach was former Houston Astros great, Craig Biggio.

I'd be surprised to see if the Royals are able to ink 36th round pick Raphael Andrades, as the Florida Gators commit is headed to one of the strongest college programs in the country (to play football).

Click on each players number for any available youtube highlights.

Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/2012/06/06/3645829/royals-2012-draft-selections.html#storylink=cpy

2012 MLB Draft Analysis: Keith Law Doesn't Like Kansas City Royals' Class As Much As Years Past

Keith Law has been quite high on the Kansas City Royals in recent years and for good reason. With arguably the best farm system in all of baseball, there was a lot to like for a minor league analyst like Law, and he often praised the draft classes of Dayton Moore year after year with choices like Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, Bubba Starling and the like. This year? Not so much.

Law recently released a quick summation of several teams’ draft classes after the 2012 MLB Draft was just finished, and the results for the Royals are rather middling, according to Law:

Kyle Zimmer (1) didn’t finish strongly due to a hamstring strain, but he was 92-98 early with a plus curveball, and he’s very athletic with a smooth, easy delivery. If healthy, he’s a potential No. 2 starter, although he may not move as fast as the other first-round college arms. Sam Selman (2) was awful early in the spring, better late, up to 95 and flashing an above-average breaking ball, but he doesn’t command either pitch and I saw a real lack of competitiveness when I saw him in March; I pegged him as a reliever, maybe a specialist.

I’m much more intrigued by Kenny Diekroeger (4), a good athlete whose decision to go to Stanford cost him over $1 million (short term) and at least delayed his shot at pro ball, but if the Royals can get him back to his high school swing, they could get a top 50 talent here. I’m generally very high on the Royals’ drafts, but like this one less than usual.

Of course, it’s impossible to tell what a draft class will bring until several years down the line, but it’s clear the Royals were focused on pitching that could make a difference early.

To discuss the Royals draft, head over to Royals Review and join the discussion.

2012 MLB Draft: Kansas City Royals Draft Results

With the third day of the 2012 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft now complete, the entire draft is in the books. The Kansas City Royals looked to add to an already-excellent farm system, and hopefully for the Royals and Royals fans, this draft class will do just that.

Here's a list of each and every pick the Royals made in the 2012 MLB Draft.

  • No. 5 overall: Kyle Zimmer, RHP, San Francisco
  • No. 66 overall: Sam Selman, LHP, Vanderbilt, TN
  • No. 100 overall: Colin Rodgers, LHP, Parkview Baptist HS, LA
  • No. 133 overall: Kenny Diekroeger, 2B, Stanford, CA
  • No. 163 overall: Chad Johnson, C, Galesburg HS, IL
  • No. 193 overall: Zach Lovvorn, RHP, Oxford HS, AL
  • No. 223 overall: Fred Ford, OF, Jefferson JC, MO
  • No. 253 overall: Alfredo Escalera-Maldonado, OF, Pendleton School, FL
  • No. 283 overall: Daniel Stumpf, LHP, San Jacinto JC, TX
  • No. 313 overall: Alexis Rivera, 1B/OF, Montverde Academy, FL
  • No. 343 overall: Zeb Sneed, RHP, Northwest Nazarene, ID
  • No. 373 overall: Jackson Willeford, 2B, Ramona HS, CA
  • No. 403 overall: Hunter Haynes, LHP, Mexico HS, MO
  • No. 433 overall: Parker Morin, C, Utah
  • No. 463 overall: Dylan Sons, LHP, Halifax County HS, VA
  • No. 493 overall: Austin Fairchild, LHP, St. Thomas HS, TX
  • No. 523 overall: Ariel Estades, OF, Puerto Rico Baseball Academy, PR
  • No. 553 overall: Justin Alleman, RHP, Holt HS, MI
  • No. 583 overall: Andrew Triggs, RHP, University of Southern California
  • No. 613 overall: Shane Halley, OF, Virginia
  • No. 643 overall: Matt Strahm, LHP, Neosho County CC, KS
  • No. 673 overall: Alec Mills, RHP, Tennessee-Martin
  • No. 703 overall: Kevin Allen, RHP, Texas Christian University
  • No. 733 overall: Beau Maggi
  • No. 763 overall: Matt Tenuta, LHP, Apex HS, NC
  • No. 793 overall: Mark Donato, 1B, Indian River CC, FL
  • No. 823 overall: Ashton Goudeau, RHP, Maplewoods CC, MO
  • No. 853 overall: Sam Bates, 1B, Arkansas
  • No. 883 overall: John Walter, RHP, Penn State
  • No. 913 overall: Ethan Chapman, OF, Cal State Bernadino, CA
  • No. 943 overall: Hayden Edwards, RHP, Blue Valley HS, KS
  • No. 973 overall: Patrick Conroy, LHP, Marin CC, CA
  • No. 1,003 overall: Evan Phillips, RHP, Clayton HS, NC
  • No. 1,033 overall: Marsalis Holloway, OF, Columbia State CC, TN
  • No. 1,063 overall: Tyler Joyner, LHP, East Carolina, NC
  • No. 1,093 overall: Raphael Andrades, OF, Lincoln HS, FL
  • No. 1,123 overall: Jake Newberry, RHP, Mira Mesa HS, CA
  • No. 1,153 overall: Carlos Urena, OF, Whitehall HS, PA
  • No. 1,183 overall: Justin Leeson, OF, Georgetown, DC
  • No. 1,213 overall: Taylor Kaczmarek, RHP, South Mountain CC, AZ
To discuss the Royals draft, head over to Royals Review and join the discussion.

2012 MLB Draft: Royals' First Round Pick Kyle Zimmer Comes With 'Little To No Risk'

If the Kansas City Royals could have placed their 2012 MLB Draft wishes into a job posting, it would likely read something along the lines of: “Starting pitcher needed. Must be near finished product with several plus pitches. Could advance quickly.” The end result? Kyle Zimmer was the team’s first overall selection at No. 5 in the draft, and scouting reports say that despite a late season fade at San Francisco, Zimmer will be just fine for the Royals in the end.

"He’s a guy that will be able to eat innings," said an AL scout to Baseball America. "Even if he doesn’t become a front-of-the-rotation starter, he’ll be a solid No. 3 or No. 4 that can give you 200-plus (innings) in a season. That’s extremely valuable. He’s a special pitching prospect. There’s little to no risk with this guy."

The Royals certainly hope so. The starters at the Major League level right now for Kansas City are lucky to get through six innings. To have a guy who could consistently deliver that amount while posting respectable totals is exactly what they need. Even their offseason addition of Jonathan Sanchez has only exacerbated a volatile staff rather than settling it.

Zimmer isn hardly a sure thing, simply because MLB history is littered with promising arms that didn’t make it in the end. Even the Royals current system has several once-hyped pitching prospects that are still waiting to make good. But adding a pitcher labeled safe like Zimmer is exactly what the Royals needed. It might lack the flash of a high velocity ace, but the Royals just need someone dependable at this point. Perhaps he’s on the way.

For complete coverage of the Kansas City Royals, please visit Royals Review and head over to Baseball Nation for additional news, notes and analysis around Major League Baseball. Check out Minor League Ball to see how some of these prospects develop in their quest to the major leagues.


2012 MLB Draft: Day Two In The Books For The Kansas City Royals

Well we are 15 picks in to the 2012 MLB Draft, and the Kansas City Royals have yet to select a college senior among the picks thus far.

Keep in mind that is an oddity this year, with the new draft rules causing not only confusion, but many more college seniors to be selected than in the past. J.J. Cooper of Baseball America wrote about the issue on Tuesday evening.

Though Kansas City didn't select any seniors, it certainly had an effect on the type of players the organization took. In recent times, Kansas City was the big bad boy on the block. The Royals and the Pittsburgh Pirates, two of the most downtrodden teams of the past two decades, commonly were the most aggresive with the checkbooks in the last few drafts. Those days are no more.

So let's take a quick look back at whom the Royals selected thus far-

1st round (5) - 6'3" 210 lb RHP Kyle Zimmer University of San Francisco Age 20

2nd round (66) - 6'3" 185 lb LHP Sam Selman Vanderbilt Age 21

3rd round (100) - 6'0" 180 lbs LHP Colin Rodgers Parkview Baptist HS Baton Rouge, LA Age 18 Commited to Auburn

4th round (133) - 6'2" 200 lb SS Kenny Diekroeger Stanford Age 21

5th round (163) - 6'1" 175 lbs C Chad Johnson Galesburg HS Galesburg, IL Age 17 Committed to Illinois State

6th round (193) - 6'0" 185 lbs RHP Zach Lovvorn Oxford HS Oxford, AL Age 17 Committed to Samford

7th round (223) - 6'5" 200 lbs OF Fred Ford Jefferson College Age 20 Committed to Western Kentucky

8th round (253) - 6'1" 180 lbs CF Alfredo Escalera-Maldonado The Pendleton School, FL Age 17 Committed to Stetson

9th round (283) - 6'2" 200 lbs LHP Daniel Stumpf San Jacinto College Age 21 Committed to Lubbock Christian

10th round (313) - 6'2" 225 lbs OF Alexis Rivera Montverde Academy, FL Age 17 Committed to Florida International

11th round (343) - 6'4" 190 lb RHP Zebulon Sneed Northwest Nazarene College, ID Age 21

12th round (373) - 5'9" 180 lb 2B Jackson Willeford Ramona HS Ramona, CA Age 18 Committed to Arizona

13th round (403) - 5'9" 175 lbs LHP Hunter Haynes Mexico HS Mexico, MO Age 18 Committed to Missouri

14th round (433) - 5'11' 195 lbs C Mike Morin Utah

15th round (564) - 6'3" 175 lbs LHP Dylan Sons Halifax County Sr HS South Boston, VA Age 17 Committed to Winthrop

Knee Jerk Reactions

Best value - Jackson Willeford

The Arizona Wildcat commit was ranked the 162nd overall prospect by Baseball America, and for the Royals to pick him at 373 is great value. The question now will be if the Royals will be able to sign Willeford. He's a offensive second basemen and his game as been compared to big leaguers Marcus Giles and Aaron Miles.

Biggest reach - Fred Ford

Ford came from completely off the radar in the seventh round, but he appears to be a good athlete by successfully stealing 32 bases in 35 attempts this season. That, combined with a batting average over .400 leads me to be intrigued.

Most intriguing - Alexis Rivera

The guys at Perfect Game had this to say about Rivera, which makes me interested in the 17 year old who is already built more like a man who is already in the big leagues-

Alexis Rivera is a 2012 OF/1B with a 6-2 220 lb. frame from Kissimmee, FL who attends Montaverde Academy. Big, strong muscular build. Ran a 6.88 sixty. Shows raw arm strength in outfield. Online with carry. Good reads on balls in games. Power left-handed bat the big potential. Open start, gets closed, loose extension with easy bat speed. Can handle bat and uses natural strength very well. Looks to drive and elevate. Consistent hard contact to all fields, very big power to pull side. In games showed ability to recognize pitches and adjust to spin and location. One of best power bats in country.

Look for continued reports on Royals draft picks, along with video in the near future as tomorrow we close out the 2012 MLB Draft.


2012 MLB Draft: Who Is Sam Selman? Meet The Newest Kansas City Royals Pitcher

Much like Kansas City Royals first round selection Kyle Zimmer, Vanderbilt left-handed pitcher Sam Selman is an unusual college pitcher in that they both don't have quite the wear on their arms in comparison to most college pitchers.

Selman, who was drafted in the 14th round out of high school by the Los Angeles of Anaheim Angels, was 9-3 with a 3.57 ERA for the Commodores this season, leading the club in victories while also tying for the lead in strikeouts (he had 79 in 75.2 innings).

Our friends over at Anchor of Gold recently wrote about Selman's path to becoming a second round selection. In a recent May 24th outing against Florida, Selman went six innings, pitching a two-hit shutout. He would strike out seven.

It certainly looks like Selman has a history of walking guys, but if he can work on those command issues, the Royals may have found a pitcher for the future. We know Selman has already faced the best competition the college game provides.


2012 MLB Draft: Kansas City Royals Select Texas JuCo P Daniel Stumpf In Round 9

With the 283rd overall pick in the 2012 MLB Draft, the Kansas City Royals selected junior college pitcher Daniel Stumpf of San Jancinto Junior College in Texas.

Stumpf, a left-hander, was ranked the 210th overall prospect coming into the draft by Baseball America.

The 6'2" 198 lb left-hander throws a low 90's fastball and is noted for his command and ability to throw strikes. Stumpf, who started as a student at Stephen F. Austin, is commited to Lubbock Christian next season. However, Stumpf is expected to sign with the Royals.

He has grown quite a bit since high school, when Stumpf was listed as 5'11" and 155 lbs as a high school senior.

After reaching for their previous three picks, it appears the Royals are now back on track in picking a guy who Baseball America actually had ranked higher than his draft position.

Look for Kansas City to likely go with another pitcher in the 10th round.


2012 MLB Draft: Kansas City Royals Select HS Outfielder Alfredo Escalera-Maldonado In Round 8

Another "off the radar" guy, Alfredo Escalera-Maldonado is a native Puerto Rican who has been prepping as IMG Academy in Florida. The Stetson commit was announced as a centerfielder, but has experience at third base as well.

Listed at 6'2" 180 lbs, Escalera-Maldonado was named second team All-State in Florida by Rawlings.

It clearly looks like lately the Royals are going for signable high school kids that can potentially turn into solid contributors with time and patience.

It's a little surprising that the Royals have taken this path as it was expect that many college players would be going early this year because of the new draft rules.

Honestly I am not sure of what to make of the Kansas City draft at the moment, but stayed tuned as we will continue to bring you the first ten picks and expanded Royals coverage throughout the afternoon and evening.

Also make sure you are checking out Royals Review for continued discussion as well.


2012 MLB Draft: Kansas City Royals Select Missouri JuCo Player Fred Ford In Round 7

We have a curveball.

Kansas City went off the radar to select Jefferson College outfielder Fred Ford with their seventh round selection in the 2012 MLB Draft.

Ford, 6'5" 210 lbs, played first base at Jefferson, but was announced as an outfielder by the Royals. The Fort Zumwalt South (MO) prep was not listed among the top 500 prospects by Baseball America.

In 56 games this season, Ford hit .432 with 13 home runs and 68 RBI. He also hit 17 doubles and stole 32 bases in 35 attempts.

This looks to be another under slot pick for the Royals, and makes us wonder if the Royals know they have spent their draft slot money for the first 10 rounds early in the draft this year.

Needless to say the days of the Royals just tossing around money in the draft appears to be over, thanks to the new rules set forth by major league baseball.

It will be interesting to see how the rest of the day plays out. More of the same like the last few picks, or back to more high ceiling guys?


2012 MLB Draft: Kansas City Royals Select Alabama HS Pitcher Zach Lovvorn In Round 6

After a short break, the Kansas City Royals selected Oxford, Alabama pitcher Zach Lovvorn with the fifth pick in the sixth round of the 2012 MLB Draft.

Lovvorn, 6'1" 195 lbs is a right-hander that is currently committed to Samford. He was actually the third pitcher in his high school rotation as the two above him are signed with Florida and Alabama respectively.

Lovvorn started rising up the draft boards after a strong showing in the National High School Invitational. This lead him to being ranked as the 242nd overall prospect by Baseball America coming into the draft.

He features a mid 90's fastball that has some movement, along with an average slider and changeup.

Look for Lovvorn to be another reasonably signable pick much like the Royals fifth round selection, catcher Chad Johnson from Galesburg, Illinois.

It will be interesting to see what college names the Royals go for between now and round ten.


2012 MLB Draft: Kansas City Royals Select Illinois HS Catcher Chad Johnson In Round 5

We have the first true reach, as the Royals selected Galesburg, Illinois higher school catcher Chad Johnson with the 163rd overall selection in the 2012 MLB Draft.

The Illinois State commit was ranked the 457th best overall prospect by Baseball America and figures to be someone Kansas City can get into the fold rather quickly. Being that he will likely sign under slot, it means Kansas City has the potential to spend more money in the next few rounds on someone who might require a higher than slot amount to sign.

Standing 6'1" and weighing 180 lbs, Johnson is a left-handed hitter that will continue to build strength as he continues to grow. Though he doesn't have the strength yet, he does have a quick release behind the plate.

Look for Kansas City to likely draft a player who may have fell because of signability issues later in the next few rounds.


2012 MLB Draft: Kansas City Royals Select Stanford SS Kenny Diekroeger In Round 4

We finally have a position player as Kansas City has now selected Stanford Cardinal shortsthop Kenny Diekroeger with the 133rd overall pick in the 2012 MLB Draft.

Diekroeger was actually a second round pick in 2009 out of high school by the Tampa Bay Rays. He turned down $2 million and went to Stanford instead. Baseball America's 118th overall prospect, Diekroeger has been on a roller coaster since arriving in Palo Alto.

He will likely move to second base as a pro and many scouts look at him as a solid utility player. It appears that Diekroeger is a prime example of why a player should take the money coming out of high school and focus on their baseball career first.

While this isn't a sexy pick for the Royals, it certainly is an interesting one. If the Royals can figure out a way to bring out what scouts saw that made him a second round pick, Kansas City could have found a gem.


2012 MLB Draft: Kansas City Royals Select LHP Colin Rodgers In Round 3

With their third round selection, the Kansas City Royals once again took another pitcher, this time it was left-handed high school pitcher Colin Rodgers from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The Auburn signee is 6'0" 180 lbs and throws a plus curveball. He throws a low 90's fastball, and is projected to stay as a starter if he can continue to show progression on his changeup.

Rodgers was named a Third Team All-American during the pre-season by Rawlings and Perfect Game. Baseball America had him as the 207th ranked overall player.

Early on, we can see that pitching has continued to be the focus, with the Royals having now selected a right-hander in Kyle Zimmer, followed by two left-handed pitchers.

Rodgers will be an interesting player to see if he signs, being a high school player taken in the third round. However, Jonathan Mayo and Jim Callis talked about on the live draft show on MLB.com, that many of these teams must have contacted the high school players and gave their figures to see if they would sign.

Stayed tuned for continued coverage, while also heading to Royals Review or more day long draft coverage.


2012 MLB Draft: Kansas City Royals Select Vanderbilt LHP Sam Selman In Second Round

Job number one for the Kansas City Royals coming into the 2012 MLB Draft was to add pitching depth to the organization which lacks quality depth that is near major league ready.

After picking University of San Francisco right-hander Kyle Zimmer fifth overall, the Royals once again went with pitching as they selected another college pitcher in Vanderbilt's Sam Selman.

Much like Zimmer, Selman doesn't have much tread on his arm for a college pitcher. Listed at 6'3" 195 lbs, Selman is originally from Austin, Texas and throws a low 90's fastball.

Baseball America had Selman listed as the 146th overall prospect, and this is the second draft for Selman as he was taken in the 14th round out of high school by the Angels.

BA also goes on to say he could be a tough sign, and Selman looks to improve upon his 8-3 season with a 4.03 ERA for the Commodores. The junior struck out 80, while walking 43 in 76 innings pitched.


2012 MLB Draft: Texas Rangers Select Blue Valley West Prep Collin Wiles

Former Blue Valley West star, and current Vanderbilt commit Collin Wiles was selected with the 53rd overall choice in the 2012 MLB Draft by the Texas Rangers on Monday evening during the supplemental portion of the first round.

This marks the second year in a row that a Kansas high school prep was selected the first evening of the draft after last year when Bubba Starling was picked by the Kansas City Royals with the fifth overall selection.

Wiles, who was the high school player of the year in Kansas, was compensation for the Rangers losing reliever Darren Oliver to the Toronto Blue Jays during the off season.

Wiles' Jaguars recently were the Class 6A runner-ups in the KSHSAA baseball tournament held in Lawrence over Memorial Day weekend. The second seeded Blue Valley West lost to eighth-seeded upstart and city rival Blue Valley North 1-0 in the title game. North finished the year 17-8, while West closed the season at 22-3.


MLB Draft 2012: Kansas City Royals Select Kyle Zimmer

Well the draft got off to a wild start when the Houston Astros passed on Mark Appel, whom everyone had penciled in as the first overall pick. Instead, Houston selected Puerto Rican shortstop Carlos Correa as the first overall pick.

Coupled with the Minnesota Twins selecting Georgia high school outfielder Byron Buxton, it allowed Kansas City to have the ability to at least be able to draft one of the top three college pitchers that were thought to have separated themselves from the rest of the pack.

So with the fifth overall pick in the 2012 MLB Draft, the Kansas City Royals selected pitcher Kyle Zimmer out of the University of San Francisco.

In baseball, you rarely are ever selecting for need, but the Royals really needed an advanced pitcher who could advance through the minor leagues quickly. The Royals were certainly poised to be in position to select Mark Appel from Stanford University. Appel, a Scott Boras client, possibly fell because of signability issues after Houston passed on him as the first overall pick.

Zimmer, who was ranked third overall by Baseball America, has only been pitching for two years. He best pitch is his mid to high 90's fastball, which lead him to 5-3 record this season with a 2.85 ERA. He truck out 104, while walking just 17.

At 6'4" 220 lbs, the big right-hander has drawn early comparisons to Jarrod Parker and/or Adam Wainwright.

Keep it here for more Royals draft updates, and also make sure to visit Royals Review.


MLB Draft 2012: TV Schedule, Start Time, Live Stream, Draft Tracker

The Kansas City Royals are on the clock early tonight in the 2012 MLB Draft with the No. 5 overall selection. It's the same slot they used last year to grab highly regarded outfield prospect Bubba Starling and this year the team hopes to strike gold with another impact player -- most likely a college pitcher of some kind. Then again, it depends on what the Astros and others do in front of them with the first four choices.

The Royals are among the few teams without a compensatory selection so after their choice at No. 6, they have to wait through 61 more selections before picking at No. 66 overall in the second round. The MLB Draft is tonight for those who want to watch and we've got all your info here.

2012 Major League Baseball Rule IV Draft
Time/Date: Monday, June 4 @ 5:00pm CT
TV: MLB Network
Live Stream: You can check out the live feed on MLB.com here.
Draft Tracker: Also check out MLB's Draft Tracker here.

Check out Royals Review for more info on the upcoming draft as well as Minor League Ball.

Check out the SB Nation Channel on YouTube


2012 MLB Draft Order: Houston Astros, Minnesota Twins Kick Off First Round

The St. Louis Cardinals hope to cash in tonight. The same can be said for the Minnesota Twins, Oakland Athletics and San Diego Padres. Several teams have multiple picks in the first round along with compensatory selections in the 2012 MLB Draft, and it’s the ideal time to restock farm systems that might be faltering. For the Kansas City Royals, they have one lone pick among the top 60, so the pressure is on to make it count. Luckily it’s a top five selection.

The Houston Astros kick off the 2012 MLB Draft tonight with the Minnesota Twins immediately following. Here’s the complete draft order for the first round and compensatory sandwich picks before round two.

1. Houston Astros
2. Minnesota Twins
3. Seattle Mariners
4. Baltimore Orioles
5. Kansas City Royals
6. Chicago Cubs
7. San Diego Padres
8. Pittsburgh Pirates
9. Miami Marlins
10. Colorado Rockies
11. Oakland Athletics
12. New York Mets
13. Chicago White Sox
14. Cincinnati Reds
15. Cleveland Indians
16. Washington Nationals
17. Toronto Blue Jays
18. Los Angeles Dodgers
19. St. Louis Cardinals (Compensation for Albert Pujols — Los Angeles Angels)
20. San Francisco Giants
21. Atlanta Braves
22. Toronto Blue Jays (unsigned pick Tyler Beede)
23. St. Louis Cardinals
24. Boston Red Sox
25. Tampa Bay Rays
26. Arizona Diamondbacks
27. Milwaukee Brewers (Prince Fielder — Detroit Tigers)
28. Milwaukee Brewers
29. Texas Rangers
30. New York Yankees
31. Boston Red Sox (Jonathan Papelbon — Philadelphia Phillies)
32. Minnesota Twins (Michael Cuddyer — Colorado Rockies)
33. San Diego Padres (Heath Bell — Miami Marlins)
34. Oakland Athletics (Josh Willingham — Minnesota Twins)
35. New York Mets (Jose Reyes — Miami Marlins)
36. St. Louis Cardinals (Albert Pujols — Los Angeles Angels)
37. Boston Red Sox (Jonathan Papelbon — Philadelphia Phillies)
38. Milwaukee Brewers (Prince Fielder — Milwaukee Brewers)
39. Texas Rangers (C.J. Wilson — Los Angeles Angels)
40. Philadelphia Phillies (Ryan Madson — Cincinnati Reds)
41. Houston Astros (Clint Barmes — Pittsburgh Pirates)
42. Minnesota Twins (Jason Kubel — Arizona Diamondbacks)
43. Chicago Cubs (Aramis Ramirez — Milwaukee Brewers)
44. San Diego Padres (Aaron Harang — Los Angeles Dodgers)
45. Pittsburgh Pirates (Ryan Doumit — Minnesota Twins)
46. Colorado Rockies (Mark Ellis — Los Angeles Dodgers)
47. Oakland Athletics (David De Jesus — Chicago Cubs)
48. Chicago White Sox (Mark Buehrle — Miami Marlins)
49. Cincinnati Reds (Ramon Hernandez — Colorado Rockies)
50. Toronto Blue Jays (Frank Francisco — New York Mets)
51. Los Angeles Dodgers (Rod Barajas — Pittsburgh Pirates)
52. Texas Rangers (Darren Oliver — Toronto Blue Jays)
53. St. Louis Cardinals (Octavio Dotel — Detroit Tigers)
54. Philadelphia Phillies (Raul Ibanez — New York Yankees)
55. San Diego Padres (unsigned pick Brett Austin)
56. Chicago Cubs (Carlos Pena — Tampa Bay Rays)
57. Cincinnati Reds (Francisco Cordero — Toronto Blue Jays)
58. Toronto Blue Jays (Jon Rauch — New York Mets)
59. St. Louis Cardinals (Edwin Jackson — Washington Nationals)
60. Toronto Blue Jays (Jose Molina — Tampa Bay Rays)

Check out Royals Review for more info on the upcoming draft as well as Minor League Ball.

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VIDEO: 2012 MLB Draft Preview, Kyle Zimmer Throws For San Francisco

For those baseball fans wanting a closer look at a product the Kansas City Royals might come away with in the first round of the 2012 MLB Draft, here's a couple of scouting videos of Kyle Zimmer. The starting pitcher for the San Francisco Dons is commonly linked to KC with the No. 5 choice in the draft, and he could be the high-end, near-ready pitcher that the Royals could use as soon as possible.

Here's a look at Zimmer in a couple of scouting vids:

Check out Royals Review for more info on the upcoming draft as well as Minor League Ball.

Check out the SB Nation Channel on YouTube


2012 MLB Mock Draft: Kyle Zimmer To Kansas City Royals Becoming Common Occurrence

The 2012 MLB Draft is almost upon us this coming week, and the Kansas City Royals have the No. 5 pick once again — the exact same position they were in a year ago at this time. The selection then was high-risk, high-reward high school phenom Bubba Starling. This time, the Royals are expected to take the opposite route and grab a safe, polished arm that could pay quicker dividends in the major league rotation.

Matt Garrioch of MinorLeagueBall.com has the Royals taking Kyle Zimmer with the No. 5 choice. Garrioch writes, “I think the Royals would prefer Gausman here but I think Zimmer is next on their board.”

The two competing arms are Kevin Gausman of LSU and Kyle Zimmer of San Francisco. Both players would project well to the majors and could land in KC as early as 2013 depending on how aggressively the Royals handled them.

Zimmer has 104 strikeouts in 88 innings this year for the Dons with a 2.56 ERA.

Check out Royals Review for more info on the upcoming draft as well as Minor League Ball.


2012 MLB Draft: Potential Picks Showcased This Weekend For Royals

As stated many times already, if things shape out as many of the Kansas City Royals brass hopes, the team will be selecting a college pitcher with the fifth pick on Monday evening.

Louisiana State University is the seventh overall seed among the 64 as the 2012 NCAA Baseball Tournament begins play this weekend. LSU will host a regional in Baton Rouge, were the Tigers will face in-state Louisiana-Monroe. Oregon State takes on Belmont in the other match-up.

The Tigers are lead on the mound by Kevin Gausman who we have identified as one of the three popular picks for the Royals to take. It will be a tough task for anyone other than the Tigers to come out of the Baton Rouge regional as the Tigers are 31-7 at home, and 43-16 on the season.

In 15 starts, Gausman is 10-1 with a 2.84 ERA. His WHIP has been 1.09 and his strikeout-to-walk ratio is currently 5.21-to-1. He has allowed just two home runs in 403 at-bats. His WHIP is actually higher in 2012 than last year, but Gausman's strikeout rate has increased from 3.74-to-1 in his freshman season. He also has cut his home runs allowed from five last year.

Stanford is also a one seed, hosting the Palo Alto Regional where the Cardinal will take on Fresno State. Pepperdine faces Michigan State on the other side of the bracket. Stanford features Mark Appel, a 6'5" 215 lb Texas right-hander. In recent days there has been increasing speculation that the Houston Astros could take the local product with the first overall pick. Appel, who grew up an Astros fan, is 9-1 on the year with a 2.37 ERA, and 1.02 WHIP. His strikeout-to-walk ratio hasn't been quite as stellar as Gausman's, but is still a salty 4.83 strikeouts per walk issued.

San Francisco unfortunately didn't make the NCAA Tournament, so that means Kansas City fans will be unable to have the possibility of seeing Kyle Zimmer pitch on television during the tournament, but that certainly is not meant as any slight to the Dons starter.

For more continued Royals coverage, make sure to head on over to Royals Review.


Previewing Kansas City's Top Area Prospects For The 2012 MLB Draft

Jim Callis and the guys over at Baseball America have came out with their list of the top 500 prospects that are eligible for next week's baseball draft and we'll take a brief look at the prospects that fall within the general footprint of the Kansas City Royals coverage area.

72) Alec Rash, ADM High School (Adel, Iowa)

The 6'5" 195 lb right-handed pitcher is a University of Missouri commit that features a fastball that gets up as high as 95 mph, and a hard slider that is in the low 80's as well. He is still raw and must improve his command, but he figures to likely be a second round pick.

180) Mark Sappington, Rockhurst U

Standing 6'4" and 220 lbs, Sappington throws a low 90's fastball that can reach 96, and scouts think his arm strength will result in a move to the bullpen in pro ball. Scouts also rave about him being a student of the game.

194) Ty Blach, Creighton

Blach, who lead Division One with 18 wins this season, only throws 89-92 mph on his fastball, but the left-hander wins and is projected as an end of the rotation starter.

202) Bralin Jackson, Raytown South High School (Raytown, MO)

The first position player in the area list, Jackson is another Missouri commit that is still quite raw. The outfielder is a solid all-around player, but he still is a project at the plate.

268) Collin Willes, Blue Valley West High School (Overland Park, KS)

Willies is a 6'4" 180 lb right-handed pitcher that is committed to Vanderbilt, and figures to be a tough sign. His fastball velocity is current in the upper 80's and tops out at 90. He is a guy that could really improve his draft stock with a couple years in college.

324) Blake Brown, Missouri

The 6'1" 185 lb junior is second on the Tigers with 10 home runs and 39 RBI, but also leads the team in strikeouts (57).

328) Dalton Friend, Jefferson CC (MO)

Friend, a 6'3" 235 left-handed pitcher is committed to Texas Tech for next season. This season he had 13.3 strikeouts per nine innings, and does so with a fastball that sits in the low 90's. Arm troubles, combined with just two true pitches will likely make him a relief pitcher in the eyes of most teams.

333) Matt Strahm, Neosho County CC (KS)

The 6'3" 170 lb left-handed pitcher still has a lot of filling out to do, but his fastball was up to 92 mph this season. In addition, the Nebraska commit has a slurve and changeup in his arsenal.

345) Brett Wiley, Jefferson CC (MO)

Wiley, a 6'0" 180lb shortstop provides offense at his position, posting 24 doubles and 28 steals this season. Defensively, it appears he has the range to stick at shortstop. He is committed to Missouri State University.

395) Matt Fultz, Lee's Summit West High School (Lee's Summit, MO)


423) Justin Chigbogu, Raytown South High School (Raytown, MO)

First Baseman

427) Tanner Poppe, Kansas

A big 6'5" 230 lb right-handed pitcher from Girard, Kansas, Poppe was 0-4 this season with a 6.21 ERA out of the bullpen for the Jayhawks. He struggled, allowing 49 hits in 37.2 innings.

446) Shae Simmons, Southeast Missouri State

The 5'11" right-hander from was the ace of the Redhawks staff, starting 15 games and finishing with a 7-4 record and 4.50 ERA. He struck out 89 in 82 innings while walking 52. He also lead the team with 12 wild pitches thrown.

451) Richard Stock, Nebraska

The junior catcher was a transfer from USC and finished the season second on the Huskers with 44 RBI. He lead the team with 19 doubles, finishing with a .353/.380/.531 line.

463) Tanner Kreitemeier, Iowa Western CC

The Castle Rock, Colorado native has signed with Oklahoma State University after his career as a Reiver is over. He's been a truw two-way player at Iowa Western, posting an 11-0 record on the mound with a 1.57 ERA and allowing just 42 hits in 63 innings. He's also struck out 78 while walking 17. He also sports a .430 batting average at the plate, with 20 doubles and 58 RBI.

485) Derek Tomscha, Iowa Western CC

Tomscha, from Sioux City, Iowa, is signed to play for Auburn University next season. Playing at third base, Tomscha is hitting .438 with 23 doubles and 64 RBI in 185 at-bats. He currently leads the team with 15 home runs.

Look for more continued Royals draft coverage throughout the upcoming week. In addition also make your way over to Royals Review for all Kansas City Royals related news and notes.


Kansas City Royals Expected To Take College Arm With 5th Pick In 2012 MLB Draft

Sitting just a week and half away from the 2012 draft, the Kansas City Royals find themselves likely to select a right-handed college pitcher from the trio of LSU's Kevin Gausman, San Francisco's Kyle Zimmer, or Stanford's Mark Appel. Of course if high school outfielder Byron Buxton out of Baxley, Georgia somehow falls to number five, the Royals may be faced with the decision of possibly reaching on another pitcher or taking the possible best player available. That is what happened last year when the top group of pitchers went earlier than anticipated, and the Royals selected local product Bubba Starling fifth overall.

I expect the Royals to likely choose LSU's Kevin Gausman if he is there with the fifth pick. The sophomore was drafted in the sixth round of the 2010 draft by the Los Angeles Dodgers out of high school in Centennial, Colorado. His top pitches include a four-seam fastball that sits in the mid 90's and can hit as high as 98 currently, along with a low 90's two-seam fastball. He also throws an above average change-up, and will mix in the occasional curve and slider. His fastball will be his ticket up an organization's chain, and his off speed pitches are what he will have to fine tune to keep advancing.

You can view a lengthy scouting video of Gausman via youtube. Also you can read his LSU bio on the school's website. Royals General Manager Dayton Moore does have a past history with LSU pitchers, as the organization selected Louis Coleman in the fifth round during the 2009 draft.

Personally, I may be jaded when it comes to selecting Stanford pitchers as Drew Storen is the only former Cardinal pitcher who has been selected to find true success at the major league level since Mike Mussina. You may remember former Royals such as Tony Cogan and Jeff Austin, who were also former Stanford pitchers.

Appel, who also throws a mid 90's fastball that reaches 98, is a 6'5" pitcher that definitely looks the part. His second pitch is likely going to be his slider. You can view his scouting video here.

Zimmer, who really only has been pitching full-time for two seasons, is 6'4" and 220 lbs. His fastball will hit 99, and he also has a solid curveball to go with it. From what I have heard and read, he's a definite strike thrower. One of his bullpen warmups can be seen here.

While a college pitcher generally doesn't feature the same upside potential as taking a high school pitcher, Kansas City needs help with pitching (obviously) and should be looking for pitching help that is closer to the majors. The organization certainly has talent in the lower minor leagues, but beyond Jake Odorizzi and still waiting on Mike Montgomery to finally "get it", the Royals need someone on the horizon that can rise quickly.

Look for more continued draft coverage as we get closer to the draft. We'll be covering the first round June 4th, and the first full day of the draft on June 5th live on the site all day.

Also make sure to head over to Royals Review for more draft talk in the coming week.


2012 MLB Mock Draft: Kansas City Royals Select Florida Catcher Mike Zunino In Keith Law's Latest

The Kansas City Royals have the No. 5 selection in the MLB Rule IV Draft for the second year in a row, although in 2012, they are predicted to go in the opposite direction as they did when they chose Bubba Starling. Rather than a high ceiling, high risk high school bat, the Royals are typically linked to college arms who can be ready sooner than later. Yet Keith Law has a bit of a curveball in his first mock of the year.

Law has the Royals selecting a position player after all with catcher Mike Zunino of Florida. He’s considered one of the better and safest college bats in the draft, but it’s also a draft class that’s one of the worst in terms of college hitters in some time. Thus Zunino is hardly an inspiring choice. Even Law seems non-committal in his mock choice.

Law writes, “I’ve heard them on [Kevin] Gausman, and every college arm, and of course, they’d look at [Byron] Buxton if he fell. They’ve also been camped out on hard-throwing prep right-hander Lance McCullers Jr. for his past few outings, when he has been peaking at just the right time.”

If the Royals can grab a near ML ready starting pitcher at the No. 5 position (and even in the second round as well), they should pull the trigger given their current needs at the major league level. They have other position players who are also promising, but an infusion of a reliable young arm would bolster the team considerably at the highest level. Think Trevor Bauer for the Diamondbacks.

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