Wil Myers named USA TODAY Minor League Player of the Year

USA TODAY announced this afternoon that Kansas City Royals outfield prospect Wil Myers has been named the publications’ 2012 Minor League Player of the Year. Myers is the first Royals prospect to take home the award since its inception in 1988.  Myers received 10 of 11 votes from USA Today Sports writers and editors and also won the online readers’ poll.  The other finalists for the award were the Reds’ Billy Hamilton, the Orioles’ Dylan Bundy, the Rangers’ Mike Olt and the Cardinals’ Oscar Taveras.

Earlier today, Myers became the third Royals prospect to be named the Baseball America Minor League Player of the Year.  Myers is the seventh player to earn both awards in the same season, including Andruw Jones who won both in back-to-back seasons in 1995 and 1996.  The others are Rick Ankiel (1999), Josh Beckett (2001), Jeff Francis (2004), Jason Heyward (2009) and Jeremy Hellickson (2010).

Myers, 21, opened the 2012 campaign at Double-A Northwest Arkansas and batted .343 with 13 home runs and 30 RBI in 35 games before a promotion to Omaha in mid-May.  For the Storm Chasers, who begin their quest to repeat as PCL champions tomorrow night in Omaha, Myers hit .304 (118-for-388) with 15 doubles, five triples, 24 home runs and 79 RBI in 99 regular season games.  Overall, his 37 home runs were the second-most in minor league baseball, one shy of 26-year-old Darin Ruf who hit 38 for Reading (AA), while his 109 RBI ranked fourth overall. 

The Royals’ third round selection in 2009 collected two hits and drove in three runs for the U.S. squad at the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game in Kansas City on July 8 and then three days later was selected the “Star of Stars” for the Pacific Coast League in the Triple-A All-Star Game after recording two hits, including a double, with an RBI and a run scored. Last week, he was named to the 12-member all Pacific Coast League squad.

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