Eric John Hosmer
- Bats Left, Throws Left
- Height 6' 4", Weight 215 lb.
- School American Heritage School
- Debut May 6, 2011
Eric Hosmer made it to AA in 2010 and to the majors the next season.
Hosmer hit .470 as a high school senior. Baseball America rated him as being the prep player closest to the majors prior to the 2008 amateur draft. The Kansas City Royals chose him third overall in that draft, after Tim Beckham and Pedro Alvarez. Hosmer signed with scout Alex Mesa for a $6 million bonus.
He made his pro debut with the 2008 Idaho Falls Chukars, going 4 for 11 with three walks and two doubles. Baseball America rated him as the #2 Royals prospect and #24 in all of baseball going into 2009. He split that year between the Burlington Bees (.254/.354/.382 in 79 G) and Wilmington Blue Rocks (.206/.280/.299 in 27 G). The much-hyped high school slugger delivered only six long balls between the two stops. Baseball America still rated him as the #12 Midwest League prospect and #5 in the Royals chain.
Eric opened 2010 with the Blue Rocks and looked much sharper than in 2009, hitting .354/.429/.545 with 29 doubles in 87 games. That earned him a promotion to AA and a spot on the USA roster for the 2010 Futures Game. He played DH that game for the US, hitting 5th between Domonic Brown and Hank Conger. He had a great game but lost the MVP to Conger. His first trip up, facing Simon Castro, Hosmer singled in Dee Gordon to put the USA ahead 2-0. In the 3rd, he singled off Alexander Torres. In the 5th, a Hosmer single against Henderson Alvarez preceded Conger's 3-run homer. He flew out versus Trystan Magnuson in the 6th, his lone out of the game. Hosmer came back in the 8th with a RBI double off Jeurys Familia to plate Gorkys Hernandez. He then scored on a two-bagger by Austin Romine. Between Wilmington and Northwest Arkansas, he hit .338/.406/.571 in 137 games, banging out 43 doubles, 9 triples and 20 home runs. He as named Baseball America's 8th best prospect in all of baseball after the season.
Hosmer started the 2011 season with the Omaha Storm Chasers of the Pacific Coast League. He tore the cover off the ball for a month, at a pace of .439/.525/.582, to earn a call-up to the majors. He had obviously been ready earlier, but the Royals wanted to delay his arbitration clock by a year. He made his debut in the majors on May 6th against the Oakland A's, going 0 for 2 with 2 strikeouts, 2 walks and a stolen base. He picked up his first hit the next day, adding another walk as well. He hit his first major league home run at New Yankee Stadium on May 11th, off A.J. Burnett, then topped off that game with a game-winning sacrifice fly in the 11th inning in the Royals' 4-3 win over the New York Yankees. He did not have to wait long for his second homer, as it came in his first at-bat of the next day's game, off Ivan Nova. Hosmer was named the American League's Rookie of the month for July, after banging out 34 hits, including 9 doubles and 5 home runs, and collecting 19 RBI during the month. Hosmer had his first multiple homer game on August 31st, hitting a pair of solo homers off the Detroit Tigers' Rick Porcello at Comerica Park. He repeated as Rookie of the Month in September, when he had 37 hits, scored 21 runs and drove in 19, and slugged .557; he had a five-hit game against the Tigers on September 20. He finished the year with a .293 average, 27 doubles, 19 homers and 78 RBI, one of a number of young players having fine seasons for the Royals.
In 2012, he played a full season of 152 games with the Royals. There was a regression in his production, however, as his average fell to .232, and his extra-base totals to 22 doubles and 14 homers in considerably more at-bats than in his rookie year. He also had fewer runs scored (65 against 66 in 2011) and RBI (60 against 78). Only his performance on the basepaths improved, as he was successful in 16 out of 17 stolen base attempts. Still, the Royals were not particularly concerned with the fall in his numbers. Hosmer then was a last-minute addition to Team USA for the 2013 World Baseball Classic, replacing the injured Mark Teixeira. The nod was a bit of a surprise, considering his less-than-stellar performance the previous year; however, the timing of Teixeira's injury left manager Joe Torre with no first baseman on his roster, and few viable options to call upon in major league camps.
- AL All-Star (2016)
- 2016 All-Star Game MVP
- 3-time AL Gold Glove Winner (2013-2015)
- 20-Home Run Seasons: 1 (2016)
- 100 RBI Seasons: 1 (2016)
- Won a World Series with the Kansas City Royals in 2015
- Anthony Castrovince: "Hosmer believes his best is yet to come: Royals first baseman still has room for improved power production", mlb.com, March 5, 2016.