KC Royals: Bubba Starling should finally get big league call-up in 2018

(John Sleezer/Kansas City Star/TNS via Getty Images)
(John Sleezer/Kansas City Star/TNS via Getty Images) /

With the fifth overall pick in the 2011 MLB Draft, the KC Royals selected Bubba Starling and fans are still waiting to get a glimpse of Starling at the big league level. 2018 could finally be Starling’s time in the bigs.

Usually with first round picks, major league teams would like to see those players come up three or four years later depending on their age. Bubba Starling was only 18 years old when the KC Royals drafted him, so fans figured it’d be at least three to five years before he was contributing in Kansas City.

Well, here we are, seven years later and no Starling in site at the big league level. 2018 should be the year in which Starling gets to play in the majors, but obviously he’ll have to prove himself in the minors first, something that has proved difficult for the Gardner native.

Starling has a disappointing .234 minor league batting average throughout his seven years and has never appeared to be ready to get promoted. This year is obviously a different kind of season, however, as the Royals are already double digit games under .500 and will be out of the playoff race by mid summer, if not sooner.

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Last season likely would have been Starling’s first glimpse of major league action, but he was hurt near the end of the year. He had a shot at making the Opening Day roster this year too, but once again was injured. Injuries have started to pile up for Starling and that could be his undoing when it comes to being an MLB player.

Initially it was that Starling couldn’t hit and now it’s injuries. Poor guy. He’s 25 years old and has been in the minors for over half a decade now. He just returned to action in Omaha and is batting .333 after his first three at bats. It’s still way too early to declare Bubba Starling ready, but the Royals might as well let him see some big league pitches this year.

Why? Well, Jon Jay will only be here for probably half a season before getting traded, so that opens up the center field position. Starling is a good defender and would make some flashy plays in the outfield. His issue has always been at the plate and obviously hitting is a big part of baseball.

Even with his struggles in the minors, this is the year to let Bubba Starling have his major league debut and see if he can provide anything. The chances are if he can’t hit in the minors, he’s probably not going to be able to do anything whatsoever in the majors, but it’s not like the KC Royals are going anywhere this year. Why not see what the former fifth overall pick can do?

Bring on Bubba!