With the exception of the second base position, the Kansas City Royals‘ starting infield looks very well set. But, the devil is in the details. In an ongoing series, we will look at the individuals in camp who are fighting for a spot in the Royals’ infield, and make a prediction as to where they will be come Opening Day.
Miguel Tejada should not even be with the club, and absolutely should not be considered for a spot on the 25-man roster. There are at least half a dozen candidates who aren’t washed up and who aren’t strongly suspected of having cheated to achieve all of their gains. Why the Royals even wasted money on a minor league contract for him is a mystery.
Prediction: Forget predictions, he had better not be on the 25-man roster.
Brandon Wood is a former first-round draft pick who has never really been able to hack it at the major league level. He has generally put up excellent minor league numbers, and was obviously good enough as an amateur to be taken 23rd overall. But, he has yet to back that up and establish himself at the big league level. He is unlikely to do so with the Royals as they are already fairly well set, but he might do enough in the minors for another chance in case someone gets hurt.
Prediction: At Triple-A to start the year.
Whit Merrifield is, of course, a household name and thus needs no introduction. Perhaps that is a bit generous, but the man drafted by the Royals in the ninth round of the 2010 June Draft has only briefly ascended to even the giddy heights of Double-A Northwest Arkansas. He only hit about .260 last year at both Double-A and Advanced-A. He is just in camp to make up the numbers.
Prediction: He’ll be at Double-A.