Royals Futures Game: Storm Chasers vs. Naturals   Leave a comment

Nearly all the Royals top prospects were on display in Kauffman Stadium on Saturday April 2nd when the Omaha Storm Chasers took on the Northwest Arkansas Naturals. I won’t go over all the names but they were almost all there. It was my first chance to see the likes of Mike Montgomery, Mike Moustakas, Christian Colon, Wil Myers and Eric Hosmer.

The teams came out shortly after the Royals defeated the Angels 5-4 by getting 2 eighth inning runs having Joakim Soria take care of the Angles on 6 pitches for his first save of the year. The futures came out in their Naturals and Storm Chasers uniforms. The Naturals were the home team but the Storm Chasers got the home dugout and bullpen. The first comment I really have about the game is that the crowd was very strange. These are essentially Royals vs. Royals so the crowd seemed unsure of who to cheer for and against which made for a strange environment. I think the crowd was also there simply to observe and take in what should be the future of the franchise.

The starting pitchers were Mike Montgomery for Omaha and John Lamb for NW Arkansas. In my opinion Mike Montgomery gave by far the most impressive performance in the 12 inning affair. Montgomery pitched four innings, striking out four and only allowing one baserunner, a walk. He simply looked dominant when he was out there. I don’t think there was really a hard hit ball against him. John Lamb didn’t make it as far into the game but looked strong as well, pitching 2.2 innings and allowing one run on three hits.

John Lamb warms up in the outfield before the Royals futures game.
John Lamb of the Northwest Arkansas Naturals warms up in the outfield before the Royals futures game.

Mike Montgomery was relieved by another high prospect for the Royals, Danny Duffy. Duffy suffered one unearned run when both Irving Falu and Mike Moustakas mad errors in the same inning. Otherwise Duffy looked great, pitching three innings while allowing only one hit and getting strikeouts on five of the nine outs he recorded.

Danny Duffy of the Omaha Storm Chasers gets ready in the Royals bullpen during the futures game.

Danny Duffy of the Omaha Storm Chasers gets ready in the Royals bullpen during the futures game.

Other prospects that I wanted to see pitch that did are Chris Dwyer, Will Smith and Louis Coleman among others. The Storm Chasers would win the game by a score of 4-1 with Mike Montgomery getting the win. Offensively the game was a little flat, the Natural scattered five hits through 12 innings while the Storm Chasers were only able to muster eight. There were two home runs that went out; David Lough and Jamie Romak. Gregor Blanco added an inside the park home run when the left fielder missed a sliding catch and was injured so he couldn’t retrieve the ball fast enough to get Blanco. He would stay in the game so apparently it won’t be a long term injury.

Wil Myers had a nice double down the line into the left field corner for the Naturals. Also on the Naturals side, left fielder Tim Smith got credit for gunning down the Storm Chasers Johnny Giavotella at third base even though he appeared to be safe. The game was sloppy as there were 6 errors during the 12 innings. For the Storm Chasers the two biggest prospects, Moustakas and Hosmer, combined to go 1-12 with the one single belonging to Mike Moustakas. Eric Hosmer took an 0-6 and looked eager to hit one into the fountains, swinging at several first pitches. Hosmer did sparkle on defense making two great diving plays reinforcing the idea that he could be a gold glove first baseman at the major league level.


Posted April 3, 2011 by VocalsOnTop in Royals Review

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