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2011 MLB Draft: Bubba Starling Goes To Kansas City Royals

The Kansas City Royals become the fifth team to pass on Anthony Rendon, as they've selected Bubba Starling with the No. 5 overall pick.

Bubba Starling, a Kansas high school outfielder, has tremendous potential, but also a very low floor. He plays good defense in center field and has good power, which has garnered him comparisons to the Reds' Drew Stubbs, although the hope is that Starling could be even better. Less flatteringly, I've heard him compared to Donavan Tate, the third overall pick in the 2009 Draft, in that he's more of an athlete than a baseball player. Starling will need to work on his swing going forward, which could prove to be a problem. He's also a highly-regarded football recruit at the University of Nebraska and is represented by Scott Boras, so it won't be cheap to sign him.

Some mock drafts had the Royals picking a college arm, but it seemed impossible for me to believe the Royals, an organization that loves tools, would be able to pass on a very toolsy player like Starling, particularly given that Starling is from Kansas.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.