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MLB Mock Draft 2012: Kansas City Royals Linked To H.S. Pitcher Max Fried

The Kansas City Royals need another solid arm for the Major League level. Unfortunately they're sitting just one spot out of range for one of the top pitchers in the draft unless more position players like Byron Buxton and Mike Zunino work their way up in the 2012 MLB Draft, which begins tonight at 5:00pm CT. The Royals have to wait for No. 5 and hope that a player like LSU's Kevin Gausman or Stanford's Mark Appel falls to them. That's not likely, however.

Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus has the Royals selecting Max Fried at No. 5, a high school lefty out of Harvard-Westlake HS in California.

Goldstein writes, "The problem with putting Zimmer here is Zimmer's rough end to the season with Dayton Moore in attendance. If that's the only look the GM got, it could be a hard sell. Still, the club is desperate for pitching, and something wacky could happen here, including Fried or a bit of a reach for Michael Wacha."

Fried stands at 6-3, 170 lb. and Perfect Game compares him to Barry Zito at the pro level. The Royals certainly hope he's able to work through their system fast, as with any pitcher, due to the current state of the ML rotatio.

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

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