Royals manager Mike Matheny said Tuesday that Mondesi has yet to make his Cactus League debut due to a sore foot, Anne Rogers of MLB.com reports. Mondesi sustained the injury when he fouled a ball off his foot prior to reporting to camp. Matheny noted that the Royals are merely taking a cautious approach with Mondesi, who is feeling fine aside from the soreness. Mondesi will likely continue to take part in live batting practice and drills for the next few days before the Royals integrate him into games.
Mondesi agreed to a one-year, $2.52 million contract with the Royals on Friday, avoiding arbitration. Perhaps the most divisive player in fantasy baseball heading into 2021 drafts, Mondesi could lead the majors in steals by a wide margin. However, it's easy to point out that his plate skills are quite poor relative to the players who typically get drafted in the first couple rounds of drafts. He should be able to stay in the lineup even amid long slumps, as his defense at shortstop is extremely valuable and he is still just 25 years old.
Mondesi went 3-for-4 with a home run, one double and two RBI in Sunday's win against the Tigers. Mondesi was on a tear to close out the season as he recorded multi-hit performances in each of the last five games. He came within a triple of hitting for the cycle in the regular-season finale as he helped power the Royals to a 3-1 win. The 25-year-old finished the 2020 campaign with a .256 batting average, six home runs, 22 RBI and 24 stolen bases.
Mondesi went 3-for-3 with an RBI triple, two stolen bases and a run scored in Friday's 3-2 win over the Tigers. Mondesi was just a homer shy of the cycle Friday. In the first inning, Mondesi and Whit Merrifield executed a double-steal after the former got aboard with a single. In the second, Mondesi had an RBI triple. He added a double in the fifth and stole third, which gave the speedy shortstop 24 stolen bases on the year. He's surged to end the season, going 11-for-19 with five steals, seven runs scored and four RBI in his last five games. Overall, he's produced four homers, three triples, 18 RBI and 30 runs scored in 57 contests.
Mondesi went 2-for-4 with a double, a walk, three runs and an RBI during Wednesday's 12-3 win over the Cardinals. Mondesi's fantasy value this season has almost exclusively derived from his MLB-high 20 stolen bases, but he delivered a rare big performance without contributing on the basepaths. The three runs tied a season high for Mondesi, whose 14 runs over his last 12 games exceed his total from his first 43 games of the season combined (13). The increased scoring is a byproduct of moving up higher in the lineup in September, though Mondesi has created some of his own good fortune by demonstrating some progress at the plate. He's notched at least one hit in all but four of his last 18 contests.