Defense of Kansas City Royals’ prospect Hunter Dozier impresses his former manager

The Royals promoted third baseman Hunter Dozier to Class AA Northwest Arkansas on Wednesday, and it’s no wonder.

At Class A-Wilmington, Dozier was hitting .295 with 18 doubles. He also had 22 multi-hit games and nine times had more than one RBI in a game.

But Blue Rocks manager Darryl Kennedy said the team will miss Dozier, the Royals’ first-round pick in last year’s draft, for more than his bat.

“We’re definitely going to miss (Dozier) on the offensive side, but defensively, it kind of went unnoticed, he did a really, really, good job over there at third base,” Kennedy said on the Wilmington team’s web site. “I think his defense will be missed more than his offense, simply from a pitching standpoint and all of the plays he made right there. ...

“He was deserving of going up to Double-A, no doubt about it. It was the right move. We’re just going to have to pick it up. Somebody is going to have to pick it up.”

The Star’s Top 15 Prospect List

1. Kyle Zimmer, P, Class AA Northwest Arkansas

Still facing another month of total rest

2. Raul Mondesi, SS, Class A-Adv. Wilmington

Tied for 15th in Carolina League with three triples

3. Hunter Dozier, 3B, Northwest Arkansas

Had two hits and two RBIs in first two games since promotion

4. Jorge Bonifacio, OF, Northwest Arkansas

Sixth in the Texas League with 37 RBIs

5. Sean Manaea, LHP, Wilmington

Has a 3.64 ERA in home games this season

6. Christian Binford, RHP, Wilmington

Hasn’t allowed a run in two June starts (13 innings) with 12 strikeouts and no walks

7. Miguel Almonte, RHP, Wilmington

His 1.21 WHIP is 10th in the Carolina League

8. Orlando Calixte, 3B, Northwest Arkansas

Leads the Naturals with a .456 slugging percentage

9. Bubba Starling, OF, Wilmington

Hitting .556 in the two games after the All-Star break

10. Cheslor Cuthbert, INF, Northwest Arkansas

He is hitting .315 in the month of June

11. Jason Adam, RHP, Northwest Arkansas

His 66 strikeouts are the ninth-most in the Texas League

12. Sam Selman, LHP, Northwest Arkansas

Has a 3.12 ERA since the start of May

13. Elier Hernandez, OF, Class A Lexington

Batting .417 with two homers and two doubles in his last seven games

14. Ramon Torres, 2B, Lexington

He’s hitting .359 in the month of June

15. Sugar Ray Marimon, RHP, Omaha

Hit a rough patch with a 7.07 ERA this month

To reach Pete Grathoff, call 816-234-4330 or send email to Follow him at