Most of the offseason speculation surrounding the Kansas City Royals this winter will no doubt involve their hunt for pitching either in the free agent or trade markets.
And rightly so, but there is also the question of whether any minor league players will force their way onto the big league roster for next year.
There is unlikely to be a big impact, but we have seen with teams like the Oakland Athletics that there can be surprises.
There is, of course, one player in particular the Royals would like to see not only at the big league level, but regularly performing in Kansas City: Jake Odorizzi.
Odorizzi is the Royals main pitching prospect and they gave him two starts against the Cleveland Indians twice last September. He didn’t get the desired results, but he looked okay and he should push for a spot during Spring Training next season.
But there are others as well. Baseball America’s minor league player of the year Wil Myers will also be given a shot in spring training, though as has been discussed he will have to demand inclusion.
I think the prospect of a more obscure player making the team is more interesting, however. Clint Robinson got some big league time with the club last year and although he is blocked by Billy Butler and Eric Hosmer but he has impressed at AAA and he has done well in previous pre-seasons.
Since both Hosmer and Butler tend to play everyday, however, the Royals do not really have a backup if one of them picks up an injury and Robinson may be able to force his way onto the roster in that role.