Bring Back Moose!
Photo Credit: Keith Allison
I for one can’t wait to have Mike Moustakas back with the big club. I have been fighting tooth and nail saying he needs to be sent down. And I still stand by that. But the reason I wanted him to be sent down, was so that he can work some things out quickly and get back up to the major league club (when ready, not because Ned feels he has sufficiently quieted the fans and media by sending him down).
Moustakas has been at the end of his leash for some time now. A feeling Royals fans have felt a few times before. A first round pick that we had high hopes for failing at the major league level. The best comparison that comes to mind would be the Alex Gordon project of 2007-2010.
Gordon was a highly touted #1 draft pick (2nd overall) out of Nebraska. He was a 5 tool third baseman, who would hit for power, and play quality defense. In the minors he thrived. Hitting for high average, and power. While playing in AA Wichita he earned the 2006 Texas League MVP. The next season we would be the starting Third Baseman, and next coming of George Brett (he did hit left handed after all). But that never happened.
In his first full season he hit .247, with 15 Homers and 36 Doubles. A pretty underwhelming season overall, but as a rookie, there was room for growth. His Sophomore season showed some slight gains with a .260 average, 16 homers, and 25 doubles. Not exactly George Brett”esque.” Gordon’s failures began to gain the attention of Royals Media, and fans, and 2009 was going to be the make or break year for Gordo. And it broke. So Gordon was sent down. He was hitting .232 with 5 homers and 6 doubles through 49 games and he was summoned to Omaha. The following season he split time between KC and Omaha, (some of that was learning a new position) and got his swing back.
He knew what it was like in the big leagues, and could go down and work on the things he needed to, thus preparing for his return.
We all know how that ended. Alex Gordon became an All-Star and Gold Glove winner.
FINALLY to the thesis of this novella, Here is why I wanted Moose sent down. He knows what it takes to hit in the pros. He knows he has the ability. However, he currently cannot use this ability, and thus needs to go down and work on it. And then come RIGHT back and put that into play on the field.
Some may say he needs confidence. I don’t think this is actually it….If it were he should have gained that while leading the Cactus league in avg. But it didn’t. Think of it as fixing something that is currently broken.
The potential for Moustakas may been even higher than Gordon offensively. He still holds the California record for home runs, and has always been touted as a big power potential guy. Sometimes it just takes guys that have always been the best at their position a little time to adjust. But when they do, it has exciting possibilities.
I think that is what this trip to Omaha is all about. It is kind of like when Stella went to Jamaica.