While three of the four KC Royals full season affiliates have begun second half action (Triple-A Omaha does not have halves), rookie level baseball has begun.
At the rookie levels, you will see some players beginning rehab assignments (like Reid Redman, who has since moved up to Low-A Lexington, Glenn Sparkman, and Sam Selman). You will also see many of the Royals 2015 and 2016 draft picks.
Let’s start with Idaho Falls in the Pioneer League, where the Chukars are 6-4.
The team is batting .310 with 29 doubles, six triples, five home runs, and 63 RBIs. As a team, they have walked 26 times and struck out 72 times.
Catcher Meibrys Viloria, who signed back in 2013 out of Columbia, leads the PL in hitting at .548. He has nine doubles, a triple, and a homer. Viloria has scored nine runs and driven in eight. Fellow catcher Colton Frabasilio, a 23rd round draft pick last year out of Saint Louis, is hitting .321 with four doubles, six runs scored, and four RBIs.
Outfielder Yeison Melo, a Dominican signed back in 2013, is hitting .351 with four doubles, two triples, and seven RBIs. Fellow outfielder Luke Willis, drafted in the 30th round last year out of George Mason, is hitting .345 with seven runs scored and four RBIs.
The Chukars have a team ERA of 4.53. They have given up six home runs, walked 34, and struck out 78.
Igol Feliz, a Dominican signed in 2011, has a 2.61 ERA in two games. Over 10.1 innings, he has allowed three runs on nine hits (a homer) and five walks while striking out five. Alex Luna, a tenth round pick last year out of Alabama-Birmingham, is 1-0 with a 3.55 ERA in three games (two starts). Over 12.2 innings, Luna has allowed five runs on 12 hits, two hit batters, and three walks. He has struck out 15.
Jace Vines, a fourth round pick this year out of Texas A&M, allowed five runs (two earned) on five hits over three innings. He struck out three. Vines started his professional career with the AZL Royals (1.2IP, 3H, 2R, BB, 2K).
Moving on to Burlington, where the Royals are 2-3 in the Appalachian League.
As a team, they are batting .275. Shortstop Emmanuel Rivera, a 19th round pick last year, is hitting .438 (ninth in the league). Rehabbing catcher Zane Evans is 6-for-16 with a double, a homer, and three RBIs.
Second baseman Jonathan McCray, a 24th round pick last year, is hitting .316 with a double, a triple, a home run, and four RBIs. Outfielder Vance Vizcaino, an 11th round pick this year out of Stetson, is hitting .313 with a double and two RBIs. First baseman Chris DeVito, an eighth round pick this year out of New Mexico, is hitting .300 with two homers and three RBIs.
The Royals as a team have a 5.60 ERA. Garrett Davila, a fourth round pick last year, made his professional debut on Saturday. In picking up the win, Davila allowed three hits and walked three over 5.2 scoreless innings. He struck out five.
Vance Tatum, an 18th round pick this year out of Mississippi State, has not allowed a hit in two appearances (totaling four innings). He has walked three and struck out six. Ofreidy Gomez, a Dominican who signed back in 2012, has allowed two runs on six hits, a hit batter, and a walk over 5.2 innings. He has struck out five. Geoffrey Bramblett, a 30th round pick this year out of Alabama who signed for over $100,000, is 1-0. He allowed a run on two hits and a walk over three innings.
Now to the AZL, where the Royals are 3-3.
The team is batting .211 with three home runs and seven doubles. They have walked 24 times compared to 61 strikeouts.
Outfielder Khalil Lee, a third round pick this year, is hitting .313 with a double and a homer. He has scored five runs and driven in two. Lee has walked four times and struck out five times. Second baseman Jose Marquez, who signed out of Venezuela last year, is also hitting .313 with two RBIs. Outfielder Cal Jones, a sixth round pick this year, is hitting just .133, though he has walked three times compared to five strikeouts.
The Royals have a team ERA of 4.15. However, they have walked just nine compared to 51 strikeouts in 52 innings.
Dillon Drabble, a 17th round pick this year, has allowed two runs on six hits over five innings. In two games, he has struck out six. Grant Gavin, a 29th round pick this year out of Central Missouri, has picked up a save in two games. Over 5.2 innings, he has allowed two unearned runs on five hits while striking out three.
The Royals top pick in 2016 (in the second round out of Pepperdine), AJ Puckett is 0-1 in two starts. Over seven innings, he has allowed five runs (three earned) on eight hits (a homer) and a hit batter. Puckett has struck out eight.
Last year’s top pick, Ashe Russell, was held back in extended spring training and has made one start for the Royals (a perfect inning with one strikeout).