Lough takes this week's Hot List by storm

Each Friday this season, Royals Corner will release our Hot List, ranking the 10 hottest prospects in the organization. This week's Hot List is dominated by Wilmington Blue Rocks, and nobody in the organization had a better week than outfielder David Lough. Lough hit .565 last week, jumping to the top spot on this week's list. Who else made the Hot List this week? Look inside to find out.

1. David Lough
Hitting just .214 at this time one week ago, Lough used the last seven days to obliterate Carolina League pitching. The 23-year-old outfielder hit safely in every game this week, with multi-hit games in five of the six contests in which he played. On the week, Lough was an incredible 13-for-23 (.565) with four doubles and eight RBIs, boosting his season totals to .373/.429/.529. Lough has hit one home run and five doubles so far this season, and his 12 RBIs are the seventh-best total in the Carolina League.

2. Nick Francis
While the Bees continue to struggle, Francis continues to be his lineup's lone bright spot. The 6-foot-3 outfielder once again torched Midwest League pitching last week, going 7-for-15 (.467) with one home run, 6 RBIs, and four walks. Francis is now hitting .378/.500/.676 on the season with two home runs and eight RBIs. He has drawn nine walks while striking out just six times, and his 1.176 OPS ranks second in the league.

3. Jose Duarte
Duarte continued playing the role of prototypical leadoff hitter last week, drawing five walks while going 10-for-22 (.455) with three doubles and a stolen base. On the season, Duarte is now hitting .364/.463/.477 with six stolen bases. Duarte's on-base percentage is the sixth-best in the Texas League, while his nine walks are the league's seventh-highest total.

4. Luke Hochevar
The way Hochevar is pitching, it shouldn't be long before he is once again firmly entrenched in the Kansas City rotation. The 25-year-old right-hander made just one start last week, but it was a dandy. On Monday, Hochevar shut down the Albuquerque Isotopes, yielding just one run in eight innings pitched. On the season, Hochevar is now 3-0 with a 1.89 ERA in 19 innings pitched.

5. Clint Robinson
Robinson's season-opening eight-game hitting streak was snapped on Saturday, but he immediately went to work starting a new one. The big first baseman has now hit safely in 13 out of the 14 games in which he's played, and last week he was 10-for-26 (.385) with five RBIs and his first three home runs of the season (including two in one game). Robinson is now hitting .365/.400/.529 with five doubles and 10 RBIs.

6. Tug Hulett
It was another great week for Omaha's second baseman, who went 9-for-24 (.375) with three doubles, six runs scored, five RBIs, and seven walks. Hulett's current .386 batting average is good for fifth-best in the Pacific Coast League, while his on-base percentage of .463 ranks fifth. His seven doubles lead the league, while his 17 RBIs rank fourth.

7. Danny Duffy
Duffy made just one start last week, turning in a quality start on Tuesday against Salem, one of the best offenses in the Carolina League. Duffy went six innings against the Red Sox, yielding three runs on six hits and a walk while striking out seven. On the season, the 20-year-old southpaw is 2-0 with a 2.30 ERA and 19 strikeouts in 15.2 innings pitched.

8. Jeff Bianchi
Wilmington's shortstop arrives on the Hot List after a week in which he went 8-for-21 (.381) with two doubles, a triple, and four walks. Bianchi is hitting .394 over his last 10 games, and the hot streak has pushed his season numbers to .327/.417/.500, a very encouraging start for the 22-year-old infielder.

9. Everett Teaford
Teaford was one of the only pitchers in the system to start two games last week, and he won both, surrendering a total of three runs in 12 innings pitched (2.25 ERA) while striking out eight batters and walking none. The 24-year-old southpaw is repeating the Carolina League this season, and he has picked up where he left off last year, going 2-0 with a 2.20 ERA in his first three starts. In 16.1 innings thus far, Teaford has struck out 14 batters while yielding just two walks and 13 hits.

10. Mike Moustakas
Moose got off to a slow start in the season's first week, but he seems to have rebounded nicely. He hit .273 last week (6-for-22) with six RBIs, seven runs scored, and his first two home runs of the season. Over his last eight games, Moustakas is hitting .344, and his season line now stands at .269/.321/.442. The Chatsworth native has scored 13 runs this season, which is the second-highest total in the Carolina League, and his 12 RBIs rank seventh.




PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK:

On Tuesday evening, first baseman Clint Robinson hit his first home run of the season in the second inning of game two of the Blue Rocks' doubleheader. Because of rain, the game was suspended in the fourth inning. When it was resumed on Wednesday, Robinson slammed another homer in the bottom of the fourth, and he finished the game 2-for-3 with a walk and two RBIs.


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