Daniel Lynch Boosts Stock With Velocity Spike
Low Class A Lexington outfielder Seuly Matias mashed 31 home runs through July 31 and had the South Atlantic League record in his reach—but then injuries stalled him.
Matias left an Aug. 1 game after tweaking his back on a swing. He returned the following week, but an off-the field injury shut him down for good on Aug. 13.
"It was a freak accident with the bus baggage door. Putting his bag in the bus, he sliced his thumb," director of player development and scouting Alec Zumwalt said.
Russell Branyan holds the SAL home run record with 40 in 1996.
Matias, a righthanded hitter who signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2015, hit .231/.303/.550 this season and needs to improve his pitch recognition after striking out nearly 35 percent of the time.
The Royals drafted college pitchers with their top five picks in June, including three in the first round. Lefthander Daniel Lynch, taken third among the first-round trio, zoomed to Lexington in his pro debut after signing out of Virginia for $1.7 million.
In nine starts with the Legends, he went 5-1, 1.58 and struck out 47 and walked six in 40 innings.
"He’s been up to 97 (mph),” Zumwalt said. "He did not throw that hard in college.
"Our (Lexington) manager Scott Thorman compared his worth ethic to people he knows who are in the Hall of Fame. Him coming in and just making the impression he’s made has been amazing.”
KEEP AN EYE ON
The Royals signed lefthander Marcelo Martinez in March out of the Mexican League, where he had made four relief appearances for Monterrey in 2017.
The 22-year-old Martinez was the talk of the Appalachian League in August with two back-to-back extraordinary outings for Rookie-level Burlington.
On Aug. 1 at Pulaski, he allowed one hit over six scoreless innings, struck out 12 and walked none. He topped that on Aug. 7, with six hitless innings at Danville in which he walked two and struck out 10.
"Marcelo is a polished young pitcher with good feel for his pitches,” assistant general manager J.J. Picollo said. "He commands his fastball to both sides of the plate, has really good feel for his curve and changeup. He can use his curveball in different ways, and his changeup is an out pitch. He has really good presence for what he’s doing.”
Martinez led the Appy League in ERA (2.68) and strikeouts (71).