With no minor league system in 2020, the Kansas City Royals’ prospects will take a step back, which could make the rebuild last longer.
The COVID-19 pandemic shut down sports back in March and even though Major League Baseball is getting started again this month, minor league baseball won’t have the same fate unfortunately. That will greatly affect the Kansas City Royals‘ rebuild.
While this makes sense due to the pandemic, it’s going to be detrimental for the Royals’ rebuild because some of their key prospects aren’t going to be able to develop this year and won’t be able to build on what they did in 2019.
That won’t include names like Brady Singer or Jackson Kowar or even prospects like Kris Bubic, Daniel Lynch, or Kyle Isbel. Singer is nearly a lock now to make it to the big leagues with the others being strong possibilities to make their debuts in 2020.
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This instead will really hurt the developments of prospects such as Nick Pratto (2017 first round pick), Bobby Witt Jr. (second overall pick in 2019), and Asa Lacy (fourth overall pick this year), all of whom needed this year to build their resumés. These three players are going to be huge in the Royals’ rebuild and are hopefully going to be big time contributors during the next few playoff runs.
Pratto and Witt are going to be really hurt by not having a minor league season in 2020, but the good news for them is that at least they’ll get to partake in the Royals’ Summer Camp, which begins on Friday. Neither guy has any chance of making the final roster, so once Summer Camp concludes, so does their 2020 season.
Lacy, on the other hand, was not included in the 60-player club pool, so Royals fans won’t get to watch him pitch until 2021 (assuming COVID-19 has subsided by then). Lacy didn’t get the full season in his final year at Texas A&M and now he won’t get a minor league season, so hopefully he can pick up where he left off when things start up in 2021.
The decision not to have minor league season this year isn’t shocking. It’d be tough to protect players from illness and there might not be enough players to have on some teams due to the pandemic.
At the same time, however, this is really going to set the Royals’ rebuild back a bit because important players like Witt and Pratto won’t get those key at bats in the minors.
The 2020 season was going to be a huge one for the Kansas City Royals as far as developing prospects went and now, that’s going to be detrimental for this organization moving forward.