Royals’ Toups Toils Under The Radar

KANSAS CITY—Second baseman Corey Toups does not impress one with his size, but once he takes the field he becomes very impressive.

Toups, listed generously at 5-foot-10, 170 pounds, was a 15th-round pick in 2014 out of Sam Houston State.
He missed his 2013 sophomore season after having left knee surgery to repair a torn medial tendon. He rebounded to hit .310 the next year to attract scouts.

In 2015, Troups hit .291/.364/.444 at low Class A Lexington while stealing 31 bases. He did not play after Aug. 19 but still earned the Legends’ player-of-the-year award.

“He’s kind of an undersized player, but he swings the bat pretty well,” assistant general manager Scott Sharp said.

Toups logged 27 doubles, five triples and seven home runs, while scoring 75 runs and driving in 44 for Lexington.

“He’s kind of a grinder,” assistant GM J.J. Picollo said. “He’s well-rounded and plays solid defense, and, offensively, he held his own all year long.

“He’s got a little bit of pop. He’s not a real big physical guy, but he’s strong. Some of our guys have compared him a little bit with (Johnny) Giavotella at the same stage.

“He has the ability to play shortstop, which he’s done a lot of. Down the road, he might fit more as an everyday second baseman than he does as a shortstop, but it’s good for him to be getting the experience as a shortstop as well.”

After playing strictly shortstop his first pro season at Rookie-level Idaho Falls, Toups played 63 games at second and 35 games at shortstop last season in the South Atlantic League.

“I think he’s ultimately a second baseman,” Sharp said. “He’s a (high) batting average and on-base guy. He hits for some power and will hit some home runs. He walks a fair amount.”

Toups, 23, probably will begin this season at high Class A Wilmington in the Carolina League.


• The Royals signed lefthander David Huff to a minor league contract with a spring training invitation. He spent most of 2015 at Triple-A Oklahoma City in the Dodgers system, where he recorded a 2.20 ERA.

• The Yankees claimed outfielder Lane Adams on waivers after the Royals designated him for assignment. They needed 40-man space after re-signing Alex Gordon.

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