Royals Select Three Players on First Day of 2023 First-Year Player Draft

KANSAS CITY, Mo.—The Kansas City Royals selected three players on the first day of the 2023 First-Year Player Draft.

With the 8th overall pick in the 1st round, the Royals selected Blake Mitchell, a left-handed hitting catcher from Sinton High School (Texas). In the 2nd round (44th overall), the Royals selected right-handed pitcher Blake Wolters out of Mahomet-Seymour High School (Ill.). With the 66th overall pick in Competitive Balance Round B, the Royals selected left-handed hitting outfielder Carson Roccaforte out of the University of Louisiana-Lafayette.

Mitchell, who turns 19 next month and is committed to LSU, was named the Gatorade Texas Player of the Year in both 2022 and 2023. This season he hit .474 with 14 doubles, 6 home runs and 41 RBI. He also reached base in 70% of his plate appearances, recorded a 1.543 OPS, stole 35 bases and drew 51 walks to just 8 strikeouts.

Mitchell participated in the 2022 Under Armour All-America Game hosted at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, where he won the MVP Award after driving in 5 RBI. He was also a member of the USA Baseball 18U National Team that won gold at the WBSC Baseball World Cup in 2022, where he earned the win on the mound with 2.2 scoreless frames against Taiwan.

Wolters, 18, is listed at 6-foot-4, 210 pounds and gave up basketball for senior season, when he was named the Gatorade Illinois Player of the Year on the diamond. He recorded a 0.43 ERA in 49.0 innings this year, in which he allowed just 13 hits and recorded 106 strikeouts (19.5 K/9). Wolters is committed to the University of Arizona.

Roccaforte, 21, slashed .318/.426/.538 (75-for-236) with 35 extra-base hits and 22 stolen bases in 65 games as a junior at Louisiana-Lafayette this season. He hit .325 in his three-year collegiate career, including a .392 average during regular season play as a sophomore in 2022. He also played 22 games with Bourne in the 2022 Cape Cod League.

The Draft will resume tomorrow beginning at 1:00 p.m. CT with rounds 3-10, exclusively on

Derek Nester
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2020 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.


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