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Lee leads Royals' 2018 Top 30 Prospects list

MLB.com @JimCallisMLB

The free-agent departures of Lorenzo Cain, Eric Hosmer and likely Mike Moustakas signal the end of an era in for the Royals. They sparked a reversal of fortunes of a franchise that endured 18 losing seasons in 19 years from 1994-2012, winning an American League pennant in 2014 and a World Series in '15.

Royals' Top 30 Prospects list

The free-agent departures of Lorenzo Cain, Eric Hosmer and likely Mike Moustakas signal the end of an era in for the Royals. They sparked a reversal of fortunes of a franchise that endured 18 losing seasons in 19 years from 1994-2012, winning an American League pennant in 2014 and a World Series in '15.

Royals' Top 30 Prospects list

Hosmer and Moustakas were the crown jewels of a farm system that ranked as the best in baseball in 2011 and produced the bulk of the talent on those championship clubs, either through directly sending players to Kansas City or providing trade fodder. But now the system doesn't have reinforcements ready to step in, with most of its best position prospects yet to rise above low Class A and few potential impact pitchers to count on.

:: Team Top 30 Prospects lists ::

The Royals are one of just three organizations shut out on MLB Pipeline's Top 100 Prospects list. They haven't drafted as well since they started picking lower -- their top choice has averaged to the 30th overall selection in the past four years, compared to fifth overall in the previous nine -- though they are optimistic about their 2017 class headlined by first baseman Nick Pratto.

Biggest jump/fall
Here are the players whose ranks changed the most from the 2017 preseason list to the 2018 preseason list.

Jump: Emmanuel Rivera, 3B (2017: NR | 2018: 11)
Fall: Kyle Zimmer, RHP (2017: 9 | 2018: NR)

Best tools
Players are graded on a 20-80 scouting scale for future tools -- 20-30 is well below average, 40 is below average, 50 is average, 60 is above average and 70-80 is well above average. Players in parentheses also have the same grade.

Hit: 55 -- Michael Gigliotti (Nicky Lopez, Nick Pratto, Emmanuel Rivera)
Power: 55 -- Seuly Matias (Khalil Lee, Ryan O'Hearn, Nick Pratto, Chase Vallot)
Run: 65 -- Michael Gigliotti (Donnie Dewees)
Arm: 70 -- Seuly Matias
Defense: 60 -- M.J. Melendez (Michael Gigliotti, Nick Pratto)
Fastball: 70 -- Josh Staumont
Curveball: 60 -- Josh Staumont
Slider: 55 -- Richard Lovelady (Yefri del Rosario, Daniel Tillo)
Changeup: 60 -- Miguel Almonte
Control: 60 -- Trevor Oaks

How they were built
Draft: 17
International: 9
Trade: 3
Rule 5: 1

Breakdown by ETA
2018: 11
2019: 3
2020: 7
2021: 9

Breakdown by position
C: 3
1B: 2
2B: 1
3B: 2
SS: 2
OF: 4
RHP: 11
LHP: 5

Jim Callis is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow @jimcallisMLB on Twitter. Listen to him on the weekly Pipeline Podcast.

Kansas City Royals