The Royals Getting to the Playoffs was Not Overnight. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports
LF – Alex Gordon: The 2006 Baseball America top prospect was nearly a bust. A first round draft pick in 2005(pre-Moore) by the Royals, he came up back in 2007 and only hit .247…However, the Royals stuck with him and put him in left field. Now he is a two time All-Star, three (likely four) Time Gold Glover, and the centerpiece of the Royals rebuild. The credit goes to Moore here for sticking with him to see him through.
CF – Jarrod Dyson/Lorenzo Cain– Dyson was a Royals 50th round pick in 2006, he debuted in 2010 but posted career highs in games played with 120 and stolen bases this year swiping 36. He has passed 30 each of the past three seasons. Lorenzo Cain was a Brewers draft pick and part of the Zack Greinke trade that also brought Escobar over to the Royals. He hit .301 this year with a career high 28 stolen bases and showed off HIS defense in the playoffs nightly.
RF – Nori Aoki – Aoki had several good years in Japanese baseball before being signed to the Brewers in 2012. He was traded in the off-season for Will Smith, a pitcher for the Royals they were willing to give up after the James Shields trade. 2014 was his first year with the team. He showed off his defense this season as well, and hit .285 with a .349 OBP.
DH – Billy Butler – A #1 2004 draft pick by the…you guessed it, the Royals! He debuted in 2007 but had his best year in 2012 hitting 29 Home Runs with 107 RBI and making the All-Star Game. He is a .295 career hitter.