Royals Draft Notes

The 2009 Draft is in the books, with the Royals selecting 49 players.  That doesn’t mean that the Royals are taking any time off.  Scouts are headed to Minnesota this weekend to look at players and the Royals will continue to look at international talent.  Here are a few notes from both today’s press conference and yesterday’s teleconference.

 

Wil Myers

 

J.J. Picollo noted that Myers, a third-round selection, played seven positions in high school and that he has expressed a desire to catch.  Picollo says that the Royals will start him as a catcher. 

 

College picks

 

Kansas City selected 27 college players this year, plus Aaron Crow, who was listed as unaffiliated.  That’s up from 23 college players last year.  The Royals had just two high school picks among their first 11 selections this year.  Last season, Johnny Giavotella was the only four-year college player in the first 10 rounds.  Moore said that he likes a blend of high school and college pitchers.  Some of the college pitchers from this year’s draft will be relievers.  He hopes that they can reach the Majors at the same time.

 

Strategy and budget

 

Moore noted that Picollo used a strategy in which he chose three to four players with top round talent.  He also said the Royals must strive to use every penny of their scouting budget wisely.  Many of the players chosen in the final ten rounds are summer follow selections who have several college options.  Moore is hopeful that the Royals can budget their dollars in a way that will allow them to sign a few of the summer follow picks.

 

Local connections

 

The Royals made several picks with local ties, starting with Aaron Crow, their first-round selection.  Moore noted that it is important to “scout your own backyard aggressively.”  He also said that the Royals employed “good old-fashioned scouting.”

 

The Royals selected a pair of local prep pitchers today.  Michael Morin of Shawnee Mission South was selected in the 40th round and Jeffrey Soptic from Shawnee Mission East was nabbed in the 43rd round.  ATH just spoke with the local high school baseball fanatic in the Royals front office, Sr. Director of Corporate Sales, Mitch Wheeler.  His son Seth has caught Morin since they were nine years old.  Mitch says that Morin and Soptic faced off twice this season, including once in the Frank White Classic right here at Kauffman Stadium!  What an exciting moment for these two players to be selected by their hometown team!

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