Wednesday, April 14, 2021
AA-Northwest Arkansas Naturals
25 years old
Weight: 225 lbs
Drafted by Royals in the 25th round of the 2007 MLB Draft
|Clint Robinson is a man in the shadows. In fact, he’s probably the only starting first baseman in the Royals’ upper minor league system you’ve never heard of. Robinson is overshadowed by the first baseman on the A+ Wilmington Blue Rocks, first-round pick Eric Hosmer, and he is blocked by two talented young first basemen above him: fan favorite Kila Ka’aihue and budding superstar Billy Butler.
But it doesn’t end there. Robinson is also in the background on his own team, the AA Northwest Arkansas Naturals. His teammates include high-profile pitchers Aaron Crow and Mike Montgomery and position players Derrick Robinson, Johnny Giavotella and above all, Mike Moustakas.
First-round pick Moustakas is leading the Naturals in every major offensive category, including home runs, RBI, slugging percentage and on-base percentage.
Who is second in each of those categories?
The 25-year old Robinson was taken by the Royals in the 25th round of the 2007 draft. Robinson grew up just down the road in Jefferson City, Mo., and became a star at Northview High in Dothan, Alabama, and Troy University. He’s risen relatively fast through the Royals’ system, spending just a year each in rookie ball, low-A and high-A before shifting to the Naturals, and Robinson has done extremely well in Arkansas this season, compiling a .318 average plus 16 home runs, 29 doubles and a .990 OPS. It is likely Robinson will move up again next year, especially if Ka’aihue heads to the majors on a permanent basis.
But beyond that, it’s difficult to see where Robinson fits in the organization. But with the Royals, you never know. Remember, at one point Billy Butler was blocked by Mike Sweeney and Ryan Shealy.
|MiLB WEEKLY ROUNDUP|
|AAA – Omaha Royals|
|Record to date: 46-39, second place in the PCL American North
The past week: 4-3. The O-Royals have won their last three games.
Transactions: Rick Ankiel’s rehab assignment in Omaha began; Edwin Bellorin was traded to Houston for a player to be named later; Louis Coleman and Manny Pina were promoted to Omaha from Northwest Arkansas; and Barry Bowden was sent down to the Naturals.
Coming up: The O-Royals finish up a series at home against Albany this weekend, then the team will enjoy two days off before the AAA All-Star Game in Allentown, Pa., on July 14. Then they end next week kicking off an eight-game road trip to Nashville and Memphis.
|AA – Northwest Arkansas Naturals|
|Record to date: 11-2 in the second half (first place), 52-30 overall
The past week: The Naturals have won an impressive eight games in a row, including sweeps of San Antonio and Corpus Christi.
Transactions: Barry Bowden was sent down to the Naturals from Omaha and then quickly sent down again to high-A Wilmington; Louis Coleman and Manny Pina were promoted to the O-Royals; Ben Theriot, Chris Dwyer and Jamie Romak were promoted to the Naturals from Wilmington; and Mike Moustakas was placed on the Temporary Inactive List for the Futures Game.
Coming up: The Naturals begin the week with a three-game set on the road against Corpus Christi, then after an off day they return home to face Springfield.
|A+ – Wilmington Blue Rocks|
|Record to date: 10-5 in the first half (first place), 42-43 overall
The past week: The Blue Rocks were 5-2 over the past week, including winning the last three in a row.
Transactions: Devon Lowery was promoted from Idaho Falls; Ben Theriot, Chris Dwyer and Jamie Romak were promoted to the Naturals from Wilmington; and William Myers was promoted from Burlington.
Coming up: The Blue Rocks begin a long homestand with three games against Myrtle Beach, followed by a four-game set with Frederick.
|POSITION PLAYER OF THE WEEK|
|Scott Thorman, DH, Omaha Royals|
|.348 AVG (8-for-23), three runs, two doubles, two home runs, eight RBI, three walks|
|Thorman has been one of the O-Royals’ most consistent hitters this season, and he’s really ramped it up over the last 10 games, with a .333 average, three home runs and 11 RBIs. The 28-year-old Thorman is the typical Minor League lifer – he’s been shuffled around to various organizations and has spent parts of two seasons in the Show. Perhaps his recent hot streak will earn him another chance at Major League glory.|
|PITCHER OF THE WEEK|
|Christopher Dwyer, Northwest Arkansas Naturals|
|Five innings, three hits, no runs, two walks, four strikeouts|
|Dwyer began the season with A+ Wilmington, but a 6-3 record with a 2.99 ERA earned him a promotion to Northwest Arkansas. The lefty pitched his first game for the Naturals this week, and he continued to impress, allowing no earned runs in five innings and picking up a win against Corpus Christi.|