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ROYALS HONOR 2014 MINOR LEAGUE AWARD WINNERS - KOAM TV 7

ROYALS HONOR 2014 MINOR LEAGUE AWARD WINNERS

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Press Release Kansas City Royals:


The Kansas City Royals honored six individuals with minor league awards for the 2014 season, today at the club's Spring Training complex in Surprise, Ariz.  Additionally, members of the Omaha Storm Chasers 2014 Triple-A Championship squad were presented with their championship rings at the ceremony.


Individual honorees included:

Humberto Arteaga, recipient of the Frank White Defensive Player of the Year Award – recognizes the organization's top defensive player. Arteaga, 21, signed with the Royals as a non-drafted free agent in 2010.  He spent the entire 2014 season at Class A Lexington, where he posted a .970 fielding percentage (17 errors in 573 chances) and was involved in 82 double plays at shortstop.

Christian Binford, recipient of the Paul Splittorff Award – recognizes the top minor league pitcher in the organization. Binford, 22, was selected in the 30th round of the 2011 June Free Agent Draft.  He posted a 2.88 ERA (45 ER in 140.2 IP) and an 8-7 record, pitching at Wilmington (A), Northwest Arkansas (AA) and Omaha (AAA) last season.  He also participated in the SiriusXM Satellite Radio Futures All-Star Game and was tabbed a Carolina League All-Star.

Malcom Culver, recipient of the Mike Sweeney Award – recognizes a player who best represents the organization on and off the field. Culver, 25, was selected by the Royals in the eighth round of the 2008 June Free Agent Draft.  He split last season between Northwest Arkansas and Omaha, appearing in 44 games between the two stops, tallying 60 strikeouts in 65.0 innings.

Angel Franco, recipient of the Carlos Fortuna Award – recognizes a player who is dedicated to improving his English, work ethic and conduct. Franco, 24, signed as a non-drafted free agent with the Royals in 2006.  He spent the entire 2014 season with Northwest Arkansas, where he played in 94 games, hitting .234 with nine doubles, two triples, two homers and 36 runs scored.

Terrance Gore, recipient of the Willie Wilson Baserunner of the Year – recognizes the top baserunner in the organization.  Gore, 23, was the Royals' 20th-round selection in 2011.  He made his Major League debut last season, recording five steals and three runs scored in 11 regular season games, while he also recorded three steals during KC's postseason run.

Whit Merrifield, recipient of the George Brett Hitter of the Year – recognizes the top position player in the organization.  Merrifield, 26, was selected by the Royals in the ninth round of the 2010 June Free Agent Draft. He split last season between Northwest Arkansas (AA) and Omaha (AAA), where he hit a combined .319 (154-for-483) with 41 doubles, four triples, eight home runs and 79 runs scored.  His 41 doubles were tied for sixth-most among all minor league players.

Larry Carter, Minor League Pitching Coordinator, was the recipient of the Dick Howser Player Development Person of the Year – recognizing an outstanding member of player development.  Carter, in his 18th season in the organization, served as the Omaha Storm Chasers pitching coach the last two seasons, before moving to his current role this offseason.  He's been instrumental in the development of Royals pitchers over the last several seasons.

Nick Leto, Manager of Arizona Operations, is the recipient of the Matt Minker Award – recognizing an outstanding minor league affiliate employee.  Leto is in his eighth season in the Royals organization and is widely recognized for his work in Surprise during Major League Spring Training as well as throughout the year with KC's Rookie League affiliate. 
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