KC’s Own Dalton Moats Back With Monarchs For ’24

KANSAS CITY, Kan. – A hometown star is returning to the Kansas City Monarchs’ pitching staff.

Dalton Moats, who was born and raised in Kansas City, Missouri, has re-signed with the reigning American Association champions for 2024.

“It’s like I never left,” Moats said. “To be home, have people I’ve grown up with, see them in the stands. That’s what it’s all about.”

Moats attended Park Hill High School in Kansas City, where he played football and basketball as well as baseball. He was a mainstay of the Monarchs rotation in 2023, posting a 4.61 ERA over 14 games (13 starts). He allowed two runs or fewer in nine of those 14 outings.

Moats owns a career 3.57 ERA and walked just 2.7 batters per nine innings over six years of affiliated baseball.

Monarchs manager Joe Calfapietra said Moats brings more to the team than just his numbers.

“Dalton has really good stuff, he’s a good teammate, there’s a lot of good things about him,” Calfapietra said.

The Monarchs’ home opener is May 16 from Legends Field in Kansas City, Kansas.

Moats is the second hometown pitcher returning to the Monarchs’ staff for 2024. He joins Grant Gavin, a St. Pius X grad who was a back-end bullpen arm for the Monarchs’ 2023 championship team. Calfapietra said it’s important to retain key players from the title-winning club.

“It’s always good to have that little bit of that culture, the understanding of what we’re all about, and how important winning is to the success that we have,” Calfapietra said. “You can’t have the manager and coaches constantly enforcing that. You need the players buying into that.”

“It’s that confidence that you have to have,” Moats said. “There’s no time for next week, tomorrow; it’s now. It’s every day.”

The Royals drafted Moats in the 33rd round out of high school, but he elected to attend college. Moats got the call again in 2016, drafted in the 15th round by the Rays out of Delta State University. Moats signed with the team shortly afterward.

Though he was a starter in college, he was moved to a bullpen role in the minors. He reached High-A in 2017 and was promoted to Double-A Montgomery the following year.

Moats posted a 3.17 ERA in 2019 with Montgomery over 42 appearances, all but two out of the bullpen.

Find more information on the Monarchs, including tickets, schedule, and event details, at MonarchsBaseball.com.

About the Kansas City Monarchs

The Kansas City Monarchs are a professional baseball team in the American Association, an MLB Partner League. 2024 will be their 21st season at Legends Field in Kansas City, Kansas. In 2020, the team partnered with the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum and changed their name from the T-Bones to the Monarchs in honor of the legendary Negro League franchise that played from 1920 to 1965. This year, the Monarchs and the museum are celebrating the 100th anniversary of the first Negro League World Series, won by the Monarchs in 1924.

About the American Association

The American Association of Professional Baseball is an MLB Partner League that began play in 2006. Teams in the league are not affiliated with any one MLB organization. The league consists of 12 teams located primarily in the Midwest and the Great Lakes regions of the United States. Its season runs from May to September and features players who are looking to showcase their talents for a chance to be signed by a major-league team.

Monarchs Sign Former Royals Prospect

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — A former Royals prospect with a live arm and high-level experience is coming to the Kansas City Monarchs.

The American Association club signed right-hander Yefri Del Rosario to a contract for the 2024 season, the team announced Friday.

“This is an exciting signing,” Monarchs manager Joe Calfapietra said. “Yefri had great numbers in Double-A, he has strikeout potential, he should be a high-velocity guy. When you put all that together it can really add up to something great”

Rosario is the sixth player the Monarchs have signed for 2024. Five are pitchers, including 2023 league All-Star and Parkville native Grant Gavin. See the team’s full roster here.

“We’re excited with our roster, but we still have a lot of work to do,” Calfapietra said.

Born in Miches, Dominican Republic, Del Rosario initially signed with the Atlanta Braves in July 2016. He made his pro debut the following season, pitching mostly in the Gulf Coast League.

The 24-year-old was one of 13 Atlanta prospects who became free agents in November 2017 after the Braves were penalized for violating international signing rules. The Royals signed him in December 2017.

Del Rosario impressed in his first year with his new organization, earning a 3.19 ERA with Class A Lexington over 15 starts. He struck out a career-high nine batters in his first career playoff start to finish off the season.

The right-hander missed the 2019 season with injury, though he did throw simulated games in that year’s fall instructional league. He did not play in 2020 due to the pandemic. He returned to action in 2021 with Double-A Northwest Arkansas.

Del Rosario’s Triple-A debut came in 2022. Moving to a relief role full-time, he earned a 2.70 ERA over 9 games at the Triple-A level that season, spending the rest of the campaign in Double-A.

Back in Double-A for 2023, Del Rosario delivered a 3.12 ERA and 1.23 WHIP over 39 relief outings. He struck out 11.3 batters per nine innings over that span.

Del Rosario has pitched in his native Dominican Republic for three winter league seasons, suiting up for Gigantes Del Cibao in the 2020-21, 2022-23 and 2023-24 campaigns.

The Monarchs’ hope opener is May 16 at Legends Field in Kansas City, Kansas. More information at MonarchsBaseball.com.

About the Kansas City Monarchs

The Kansas City Monarchs are a professional baseball team in the American Association, an MLB Partner League. 2024 will be their 21st season at Legends Field in Kansas City, Kansas. In 2020, the team partnered with the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum and changed their name from the T-Bones to the Monarchs in honor of the legendary Negro League franchise that played from 1920 to 1965. This year, the Monarchs and the museum are celebrating the 100th anniversary of the first Negro League World Series, won by the Monarchs in 1924.

About the American Association

The American Association of Professional Baseball is an MLB Partner League that began play in 2006. Teams in the league are not affiliated with any one MLB organization. The league consists of 12 teams located primarily in the Midwest and the Great Lakes regions of the United States. Its season runs from May to September and features players who are looking to showcase their talents for a chance to be signed by a major-league team.

Hometown All-Star Gavin Returns To Monarchs

KANSAS CITY, Kan. – One of the Kansas City Monarchs’ All-Star pitchers is coming back to his hometown team.

Grant Gavin, a graduate of St. Pius X in Kansas City, has re-signed with the Monarchs for 2024.

Gavin was one of the top relief arms in the American Association last season. Pitching in multiple roles, the right-hander struck out 13.8 batters per nine innings. That mark led the AAPB among pitchers with at least 50 innings of work.

“Grant was key to our championship pitching staff last year,” Monarchs manager Joe Calfapietra said. “He’s one of those guys who goes out there and competes at all times. He really was a stabilizer in our bullpen. He was an All-Star, I think that says it all.”

Gavin was Calfapietra’s biggest workhorse out of the ‘pen in 2023, leading the Monarchs with 37 appearances. He earned a 3.88 ERA and 78/25 strikeout-to-walk ratio. He threw a scoreless inning in the 2023 AAPB All-Star Game in Milwaukee.

The Monarchs are defending the American Association title in 2024. The club’s home opener is May 16 at Legends Field in Kansas City, Kansas. The Monarchs are also hosting the AAPB All-Star Game on July 23.

 

Originally from Parkville Missouri, Gavin was a Royals draft pick in 2016 out of the University of Central Missouri. He played in the Division II College World Series with the Mules in 2016, earning the MIAA’s Relief Pitcher of the Year award that season.

The right-hander posted a 1.65 ERA in his first full year of pro ball between High-A and Class-A in 2017. He was called up to Double-A in the 2019 season.

Gavin made his Triple-A debut with Omaha in 2021, posting a 4.36 ERA in a career-high 48 games. He moved to the Padres organization in the Rule 5 Draft ahead of the 2022 season, striking out just over 10 per nine between Double-A and Triple-A that year.

Find more information on the Monarchs, including tickets, schedule, and event details, at MonarchsBaseball.com.

About the Kansas City Monarchs

The Kansas City Monarchs are a professional baseball team in the American Association, an MLB Partner League. 2024 will be their 21st season at Legends Field in Kansas City, Kansas. In 2020, the team partnered with the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum and changed their name from the T-Bones to the Monarchs in honor of the legendary Negro League franchise that played from 1920 to 1965. This year, the Monarchs and the museum are celebrating the 100th anniversary of the first Negro League World Series, won by the Monarchs in 1924.

About the American Association

The American Association of Professional Baseball is an MLB Partner League that began play in 2006. Teams in the league are not affiliated with any one MLB organization. The league consists of 12 teams located primarily in the Midwest and the Great Lakes regions of the United States. Its season runs from May to September and features players who are looking to showcase their talents for a chance to be signed by a major-league team.

Former Mizzou Tiger, Strikeout Artist Joins Monarchs

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Jacob Cantleberry has struck out batters everywhere he’s been, from the Missouri Tigers to the Dodgers system. His next stop is with the Kansas City Monarchs.

The Monarchs have signed Cantleberry for the 2024 season, the club announced Friday.

Cantleberry, 26, is entering his fifth pro season in 2024. A former Dodgers prospect, he pitched with the Double-A Tulsa Drillers in 2022 and 2023.

The Greenwood, Indiana native sports an impressive 11.3 strikeouts per nine innings in his professional career.

“Jacob definitely has swing-and-miss material,” Monarchs manager Joe Calfapietra said. “We feel that he has the potential to be a high-strikeout guy. We’re looking forward to getting him into camp and seeing his stuff.”

The Monarchs open their 2024 season May 10 on the road. Their home opener is May 16 at Legends Field in Kansas City, Kansas.

Cantleberry was Missouri’s primary Friday night starter in 2019, posting a 4.73 ERA and striking out 97 batters, which ranked 13th in the SEC. He earned NJCAA All-American honors at San Jacinto College before heading to Mizzou.

The Dodgers drafted Cantleberry in the 13th round in 2019, moving him to the bullpen. He impressed in his debut season that year, earning a 1.03 ERA in 19 games in the Arizona and Pioneer leagues.

After sitting out 2020 due to the pandemic, Cantleberry made his Class A and High-A debuts in 2021. He was part of a combined no-hitter in July 2021 while with High-A Great Lakes.

Cantleberry cracked Double-A for the first time in 2022, with Tulsa. He began the 2023 season with the Drillers, making two appearances before being released.

Find more information on the Monarchs, including tickets, schedule, and event details, at MonarchsBaseball.com.

About the Kansas City Monarchs

The Kansas City Monarchs are a professional baseball team in the American Association, an MLB Partner League. 2024 will be their 21st season at Legends Field in Kansas City, Kansas. In 2020, the team partnered with the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum and changed their name from the T-Bones to the Monarchs in honor of the legendary Negro League franchise that played from 1920 to 1965. This year, the Monarchs and the museum are celebrating the 100th anniversary of the first Negro League World Series, won by the Monarchs in 1924.

About the American Association

The American Association of Professional Baseball is an MLB Partner League that began play in 2006. Teams in the league are not affiliated with any one MLB organization. The league consists of 12 teams located primarily in the Midwest and the Great Lakes regions of the United States. Its season runs from May to September and features players who are looking to showcase their talents for a chance to be signed by a major-league team.

Monarchs Champion Yerzy Signs With Brewers

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Andy Yerzy celebrated a league championship with the Kansas City Monarchs in 2023. Now he’s celebrating a move to an MLB organization.

Yerzy has signed a minor-league deal with the Milwaukee Brewers. The 25-year-old has been assigned to the Brewers’ Double-A team in Biloxi, Mississippi.

Yerzy, a catcher and first baseman, is the second 2023 Monarch to sign with a major league organization in the 2023-24 offseason. Catcher and infielder Gavin Collins inked a deal with the St. Louis Cardinals in late December.

The Monarchs begin their American Association title defense in May 2024. Their home opener is scheduled for Thursday, May 16. 6 and 12-game ticket packages are available at MonarchsBaseball.com.

Yerzy, a Toronto area native, joined the Monarchs for the final two weeks of the 2023 regular season. He batted .286 with an impressive .457 on-base percentage in 12 games with the team.

“It was great being able to catch every day and play every day and remind myself and anyone watching that I could still play at a high level,” Yerzy said.

Yerzy backed up AAPB Player of the Year Chris Herrmann during the Monarchs’ run to the 2023 league championship.

“It’s nice to play to win, and that was the vibe I got from the team,” Yerzy said. “We were in it to win the entire thing.”

“Andy’s a phenomenal player,” Monarchs manager Joe Calfapietra said. “Everything impressed me about him: his catching ability, his throwing arm, his communication with the pitchers. Right away he blended with all the guys immediately.”

“We could tell he was someone who deserved a shot in affiliated ball, and we’re incredibly excited for him.”

Yerzy, who played in Triple-A earlier in the 2023 season, is a second-round draft pick. The Toronto native won a Northwest League title with the Hillsboro Hops in 2019.

The lefty batter posted a .900 OPS between Double-A and Triple-A in the Reds organization in 2023, playing 17 games. It was his first Triple-A action after making it as high as Double-A with the Diamondbacks.

Drafted 52nd overall by Arizona in 2016, Yerzy adjusted relatively quickly to the professional ranks. He delivered a .298 batting average and .834 OPS with Rookie-level Missoula in 2017.

He made the jump to the Northwest League the following season and maintained his production, earning midseason and postseason All-Star honors. The York Mills Collegiate Institute grad batted .297 with an .834 OPS and 8 home runs in 63 games over his first year with the Hops.

Yerzy made his Double-A debut in 2021. He posted an .813 OPS between Class A, High-A and Double-A that season.

Find the Monarchs’ schedule, news and ticket information at MonarchsBaseball.com.