The Royal Rise of Mike Moustakas

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Through 62 games, Mike Moustakas is on pace for a great season.

44 home runs. 29 doubles. 100 RBI.

People (naïve as they are) are talking MVP votes. They are (less naively) talking about the all-time Royals home run record. Reality tells us the yang will come looking for the ying with a big ole bat and he’ll probably fall a litle short of those obtuse projections.

Still, this is the type of season we all dreamed about when the Royals selected him 2nd overall in the 2007 MLB Amateur Draft. That was 10 years ago. 10. Years. Whew.

It was the type of results he showed in the minors, especially in 2010 with a .322/.369/.630 line with 36 HR & 124 RBI splitting time between AA & AAA.

But it was the type of season that eluded him in his first 4 years at the major league level. He struggled out of the gate with the big league club, especially in ’13 & ’14 when he lost his power stroke.

Local sports talk goons proclaimed him a bust. One in particular went on and on about how foolish it was to believe that an out of shape, six foot nothing player could ever be an impact bat. If he hadn’t developed yet, he never would. What a mistake, they said, by #GMDM.

But 2015 brought many things to this wonderful baseball town. Among them was a Moose that was starting to figure it all out. He hit .284 with 22 HR and 82 RBI for the World Series Champion Kansas City Royals (BTW it still feels GREAT to say that). He made his first All-Star game (with his second likely coming this year, no doubt). He spent much of the first half hitting well over .300.

2016 brought much anticipation. Was the previous year for real or were his numbers just inflated by the ridiculously hot start he had? He ended up walking the walk … until he ran the run into Alex Gordon. Prior to his season ending ACL tear in May, he backed up his 2014 performance and then some. His numbers through 27 games put him on pace for a 42 HR & 102 RBI that season. Which sounds eerily similar to the pace he is on so far in 2017.

Yes, Royals fans. We can now confirm that Mike Moustakas is for real. Yes, it took him a little longer than we all thought it would. But an injury or trade aside, we should all enjoy watching him have one of the best offensive seasons in recent Royals memory.

Your favorite largest extant species of the deer family (thanks Wikipedia) has finally reached his potential.

And it is a damn great thing to watch.





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Author: Zach Hodson

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