The prospect in the Royals' system that everyone is talking about, however, is third baseman Hunter Dozier, the team's first-round selection in 2013. Dozier rose 13 spots on the Top 30 prospect list all the way to No. 2.
Right fielder Jorge Bonifacio, 23, a non-drafted free-agent signing in 2010 and the younger brother of former Royal Emilio Bonifacio, also jumped 13 spots on the new midseason Top 30 list to No. 3. Bonifacio has an .818 OPS at Omaha with 14 homers and 60 RBIs.
The biggest riser was right-hander Jake Junis, who wasn't on the Top 30 list this spring but now is No. 10. Junis, 23, was a 29th-round pick in 2011. He has a 9-5 mark at Northwest Arkansas with a 2.92 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP. He has struck out 108 hitters in 103 innings.
On the flip side, outfielder Bubba Starling, the team's first-round pick (fifth overall) in 2011, plummeted 22 spots to No. 29 overall. Starling, 23, struggled most of the season at Northwest Arkansas, hitting .185 with five homers and 23 RBIs.
The Royals promoted Starling to Omaha in hopes of jumpstarting his season, and it worked early on. But through 23 games there he is hitting .217 with two homers and nine RBIs.
The ranking of baseball's top prospects is done by MLBPipeline.com Draft and prospect experts Jonathan Mayo, Jim Callis and Mike Rosenbaum, who compile input from industry sources, including scouts and scouting directors. It is based on analysis of players' skill sets, upsides, proximity to the Majors and potential immediate impact to their teams. Only players with rookie status are eligible for the list. The rankings follow the Collective Bargaining Agreement guidelines for which players fall under the international pool money rules: Players who were at least 23 years old when they signed and played in leagues deemed to be professional (Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Cuba) are not eligible.