Bottom Line Up Front (BLUF): Potential for tremendous offensive contributions in the middle of the lineup with solid outfield defense.
The Player: Will Myers (OF, Kansas City Royals) – Myers was popped in the third round by the Royals in 2009 and signed in time to appear in 22 games with two different rookie level clubs. In his full-season debut in 2010, Myers cemented himself as one of the most promising prospects in the game with a huge season. As a 19-year old in the Midwest League Myers hit .289/.408/.500 and he followed that up with an even better .346/.453/.512 line in High-A to close the season. Though injuries hampered his 2011 season Myers still hit .254/.353/.393 in his first taste of Double-A ball.
Body: Has a sturdy, athletic frame with strength throughout. Has added muscle in upper body since signing out of high school, but remains flexible with free and easy movements. Must work to keep lower half from thickening up over time.
Makeup: There have been no concerns with Myers makeup as a pro. He was putting in the work to try and stick behind the plate before the Royals decided to expedite his bat by moving him to the outfield and he religiously takes extra rounds of batting practice to refine his swing.
Hit: Myers’ hands work exceptionally well at the plate. He gets the bat to the zone quickly, quietly and in plenty of time to adjust to pitches and make hard contact. He has an uncanny ability for squaring the ball on the fat part of the bat. His approach is big league ready though some scouts wonder if he should be more aggressive early in the count. He uses the whole field, spraying line drives on all types of pitches in all parts of the zone. He has a chance to be an elite hitter with batting title aspirations. Grade – 50/70
Power: Though he has strength and plenty of bat speed he doesn’t elevate the ball. His swing remains on the same plane with no loft on the back end. He can drive the gaps with ease and may at least have 15+ home runs a year with a chance for more. I believe in the natural strength and saw some slight adjustments in his swing as the year went on. Grade (raw power) – 40/60
Arm: Arm strength was above-average behind the plate and it translates well to the outfield. He made quick adjustments to the different throwing mechanics required in the outfield and should have an above-average to plus arm for the position. Grade – 50/60
Fielding: Still new to the position. Still making strides with his reads off the bat but showed progress last year. Takes good routes for an inexperienced player and should make most reasonable plays. Shows right field skills with athleticism, improving instincts and arm strength. Grade – 40/50
Speed: Below average home-to-first times are routine. He doesn’t top out any better once underway in the outfield. As his body matures he could slow down some without careful attention. Grade – 40/40
Summation: His hitting ability and approach are nearly big league ready right now. A focus on adding loft to his swing while still in the minor leagues would be advantageous to his development. Has potential to be a .300 hitter with a chance for twenty home runs a year. His ultimate offensive ceiling will depend on how much his power develops but at worst he should post high both a high average and a high on-base percentage. His defense won’t stand out but it won’t be a problem either.
Relative Risk: Low. Because of his offensive approach and how quickly he has begun taking to the outfield there are few concerns about Myers being a very good Major League player.
Future: The Royals intend to send Myers to Triple-A Omaha in 2012 with his performance dictating a potential call-up to the big leagues. There is precious little standing in Myers way and once he polishes his game this year the Royals will not hesitate to call him up. He should form an outstanding trio with Mike Moustakas and Eric Hosmer to solidify the Royals lineup for years to come.