Royals Deal Prospect Lefty For Catcher Quintero

The Deal
A thinning catching corps compelled the Royals to deal for career backup receiver Humberto Quintero of the Astros. Kansas City sent 24-year-old lefty relief prospect Kevin Chapman, who finished last season in Double-A, and a player to be named to Houston for Quintero plus speedy veteran outfielder Jason Bourgeois.

UPDATE: The Astros acquired speedy, 20-year-old center fielder D'Andre Toney from the Royals on June 10 as the player to be named. A 14th-rounder out of last year's draft, Toney could not be traded until one year after his signing date, June 9, 2011.

The Royals intend to let the strong-armed Quintero, who has gunned down an above-average 32 percent of basestealers in his career, share catching duties with Brayan Pena until the club's primary options return from injury. Both starter Salvador Perez and potential backup Manny Pina are presently on the 60-day disabled list after having knee surgery. The downside to this plan is that Quintero is one of the lightest-hitting catchers of the past decade, with a career adjusted OPS that has been 42 percent worse than league average, according to Baseball-Reference. That's the fourth-worst mark among catchers with at least 1,000 plate appearances since 2002.

Bourgeois batted .269/.313/.327 in 388 plate appearances during his two seasons with the Astros, and with 43 steals in 53 attempts. However, the righthanded hitter showed a dramatic platoon split last season, batting .396/.430/.495 (.925 OPS in 109 PAs) versus lefties, while putting up a .497 OPS in 143 PAs against righties. At-bats could be hard for Bourgeois to come by in Kansas City, seeing as two-thirds of the Royals' projected starting outfield—Lorenzo Cain in center and Jeff Francouer in right—bats righthaned. Left fielder Alex Gordon probably won't need a platoon partner.
Astros Acquire
Kevin Chapman, lhp
Age: 24.
Born: Feb. 19, 1988 in Coral Springs, Fla.
Ht.: 6-4. Wt.: 210. Bats: L. Throws: L.
School: Florida.
Career Transactions: Selected by Royals in fourth round of 2010 draft; signed July 6, 2010.

Club (League) Class W L ERA G GS SV IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP
Wilmington (CAR) HiA 0 2 4.84 15 0 7 22.1 24 14 12 1 7 40 1.39
NW Arkansas (TL) AA 1 2 4.99 25 0 3 39.2 37 25 22 5 21 50 1.46
Total 1 4 4.94 40 0 10 62 61 39 34 6 28 90 1.44

Chapman's first couple of years at Florida were a struggle, but he put injuries behind him to dominate as a junior, which enticed the Royals to draft him in the fourth round of the 2010 draft. His fastball is a plus pitch, as he sits at 93-95 mph and generate swings and misses thanks to the pitch's late tailing action. He also throws a sweepy slider that serves as an average second pitch that keeps hitters from sitting on the fastball. Chapman has generated strikeouts throughout his minor league career, as evidenced by his rate of 13.1 strikeouts per nine innings last season. He struggles with his control at times, and he has to work to keep his arm from trailing his body during his delivery, but if he can continue to refine his command, Chapman can be a useful lefty set-up man.
D'Andre Toney, cf
Age: 20. 2011 Position: CF (21 G), LF (20 G).
Born: Jan. 24, 1992 in Columbus, Ga.
Ht.: 5-10. Wt.: 170. Bats: R. Throws: R.
School: Gulf Coast (Fla.) CC.
Career Transactions: Selected by Royals in 14th round of 2011 draft; signed June 9, 2011.

Toney spent his pro debut season last year in the Rookie-level Arizona League, batting .340/.432/.587 with five homers in 150 at-bats. He'll make his 2012 debut in the Astros system, having spent his time in extended spring training this year. Toney offers a potential power/speed package in a compact 5-foot-10 frame, though amateur scouts saw no carrying tool. He smacked 22 extra-base hits in 43 games a year ago, but got caught on 11 of 18 steal attempts.
Royals Acquire
Humberto Quintero, c
Age: 32. Bats: R. Remaining Commitment: 1 year, $1 million, then eligible for free agency.
Contract details courtesy of Cot's Baseball Contracts.

Houston (NL) 2011 .240 79 262 22 63 12 1 2 25 6 53 1 .258 .317
3-Year Totals .237 227 684
46 162 30 2 10 59 21 153 1 .266 .330
Jason Bourgeois, cf/lf
Age: 30. Bats: R. Remaining Commitment: Under club control for 2012-15 ($423,000 salary in 2011).
Contract details courtesy of Cot's Baseball Contracts.

Houston (NL) 2011 .294 93 238 30 70 8 2 1 16 10 24 31 .323 .357
3-Year Totals .261 186 398 52 104 12 3 2 22 26 47 46
.307 .322

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