RC profiles outfielder Cameron Monger
Monger hit .295 for the AZL Padres last season
Monger hit .295 for the AZL Padres last season
RC Contributor
Posted May 23, 2010


The Royals in late April signed former Padres prospect Cameron Monger. Despite a very strong debut last season in the Arizona League, the Padres released the 21-year-old outfielder at the end of spring training. RC's Jules Tompkins today takes a look at Monger, whose athleticism earned much praise from a pair of his former coaches.

Last August, Cameron Monger stole home; on April 22, the Royals stole Cameron Monger.

A Texas native, Monger was drafted by the Padres in 2009 out of the University of New Mexico. His rookie season in the Arizona League–– where he competed against the Royals’ AZL team–– was impressive. The nimble outfielder hit just shy of .300 in 52 games, with 29 stolen bases and 19 extra base hits.

Then, on March 31, just after spring training this year, the 21-year-old Monger gave an announcement via Twitter: “I've just been released. Time to find a new home.”

Across the minor league baseball world, the response to his release was one of surprise. Monger found himself in the same boat. “I couldn’t believe it,” he says of the release. “It caught me completely, 100 percent off-guard.”

“The Padres took a big hit when they let him go,” Monger’s college coach, Ray Birmingham of the University of New Mexico, said. “Cameron has the body of a big leaguer, great arm strength, and, of course, he’s as fast as they come. If he can just learn to swing the bat like he’s fast, he’ll be a very, very exciting player to watch.”

Speaking of learning, Monger seems to have a knack for just that. He graduated as the valedictorian of his 2008 class at Howard College, a two-year junior college in Big Spring, Texas. And, while at the University of New Mexico, Monger went on to pursue a degree in Physics.

Thankfully, his intelligence isn’t limited to the classroom. In an interview with MadFriars.com, former AZL Padres Manager Jose Flores commented on Monger’s affinity for applying the lessons he’s taught: “He came here and he took [on] a pro game. He made a good adjustment. He took the game in stride and he got results.”

Lesson-learning wasn’t the only thing Flores commented on in a postseason recap with MadFriars.com. Like everyone else who has seen Cameron Monger on a baseball diamond, the 2009 AZL Padres Manager couldn’t help but mention his speed. “I've never seen a white kid run that fast. The kid runs like the wind,” Flores said. Oh, and as for his fielding: “In the outfield, he covers everything,” Flores remarked.

For a guy who seems to have the phrase “raw talent” as the official scout-given suffix to his name, Monger is dealing with the pressure of expectation admirably. He’s resolved to live up to his potential, using the scouting world’s hype around his ability as a source of excitement and motivation. “I don’t want an excuse for myself later on in life,” he says. “I’ve definitely heard a lot about how I have a high ceiling in regards to what I can achieve and I want to tap into that potential as soon as I can.”

Royals fans should desire the same. Monger has rare game-changing ability and has been likened by scouts to a right-handed version of the Red Sox’ Jacoby Ellsbury. When asked about Ellsbury, Monger replied, “I [once] saw him steal home. That’s the kind of thing I lick my chops to do.”

Monger was able to do just that for the Padres last season; look for the young outfielder to do the same for the Royals as he climbs the organization and, hopefully, ends up at Kauffman Stadium.


Cameron Monger Career Statistics and Information
Drafted: 27th round, 2007
College: University of New Mexico
Position: CF
DOB: 08/05/1988
Height: 6-foot-2
Weight: 210 lbs
B/T: R/R

Career Statistics

Year

LG

AB

R

H

2B

3B

HR

RBI

SB-ATT

AVG

OBP

SLG

2009

AZL

217

42

64

11

6

2

32

29-34

.295

.357

.429

CAR


217

42

64

11

6

2

32

29-34

.295

.357

.429






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