#11 Mike Moustakas – Kansas City Royals
You may not believe it, but perhaps the most interesting thing about Moustakas is that he is not even regarded as the top hitter in the Royals’ enviable organization. Nevertheless, Moustakas does have the most realistic chance at starting the season in Kansas City on Opening Day. He is the most powerful hitting prospect in the game today, and has 30-HR potential the day he steps into a Major League box.
He struggled early in his Minor League career quite publicly after signing a $4 million bonus. Moustakas, the second overall selection in 2007 out of high school (where he mashed a staggering 52 homeruns), had light-tower power then and has even more now. He slugged 36 bombs between Double-A and Triple-A in 2010 as a 21-year-old, and he has absolutely nothing left to prove as a prospect. He’s as ready as they get.
His defense will never be average at third, but it is probably good enough to stay there for a few years. His arm plays well there, and at worst he could probably hack it at a corner outfield spot, but Moustakas is slow, stocky, and not very athletic in the field. Very few people view him as a guy who will spend his whole career at third.
However, with Billy Butler and Eric Hosmer entrenched at first and DH and Alex Gordon and Wil Myers likely manning the corner spots in the outfield at Kauffman, third is likely where he will spend many of his early years in the Majors.
Moustakas essentially posted a 1.000 OPS in 2010, but he still has a difficult time accepting a walk, doing so at only around a 6.5% clip. His plate coverage is excellent, though, and he squares up pitches like few in the game can. He has the chance to be an All-Star many times during the course of his career, and I would not be surprised to see him win a Derby within the next three years.