2011 Key Player: Mike Aviles

In the midst of a youth movement and building for the future, the Royals find themselves with the promising bunch of young players from a few years ago standing firmly in the path of the young and rising stars of tomorrow.

A few players have come through the organization as highly promising prospects just to flop on the big stage. Some players, however, came through the system relatively unnoticed and made an impact at the major league level. One of those players that perplexes fans and team officials alike is none other than Mike Aviles.

Mike Aviles is looking to maintain a job with the Royals as younger talent is looking to push him out. He has been the starting second baseman, shortstop and this year the Royals look to use him as the starting third baseman. He will only hold this position until Mike Moustakas is called up sometime this summer. Aviles batted .325 his first season and would have ranked third for the batting title had he had enough plate appearances. He finished 4th for Rookie of the year. This spring he seems fully recovered from his 2009 Tommy John Surgery and back to his rookie year numbers batting .424 and slugging .697 this spring. Due to his great bat and Chris Getz’s absolutely cold one, there is talk he may start at second and Getz may start in Omaha. The problem with Mike Aviles is his defense is not as good as Getz.

He was a 7th round pick by the Royals in 2003 and sent to Wilmington. He played for Royals great Frank White in AA Wichita in 2005 before heading to Omaha for 2 seasons. He became a Kansas City Royal for the first time on May 29th, 2008, replacing the injured Billy Butler. He is a 2nd generation infielder. His Uncle, Ramon Aviles played for the Phillies and Red Sox in the Late 70s.

Aviles will start the year with Kansas City but will have to be on his game to maintain a position on the team over the next couple years with the number one farm system hot on his heels.

Troy “KCRoyalman” Olsen can be heard on 810 Radio Wednesdays and Fridays from 9-11pm as part of 3 guys in a garage. Follow him at twitter.com/kcroyalman and facebook.com/kcroyalman.

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