IOWA CITY, Iowa – Former University of Iowa catcher Tyler Cropley has been called up from Double-A Northwest Arkansas to the Kansas City Royals. The official transaction took place Saturday.
“I’m so happy for Tyler,” said head coach Rick Heller. “He’s such a great catcher, leader and teammate. Tyler has worked hard, stayed committed and never gave up. We are all proud of him. He’s a big leaguer now.”
The McCook Lake, South Dakota, native was hitting .234 with four home runs and 17 RBIs for the Naturals in 2023.
Cropley played for the Hawkeyes from 2017-18. He hit a team-best .342 with 20 doubles, nine home runs, 50 RBIs and 43 runs scored as a senior. He was a named a second-team All-American by Collegiate Baseball and was a semifinalist for the Johnny Bench Award.
Cropley was selected in the eighth round of the 2018 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft by the Washington Nationals with the 251st pick. He was the first Hawkeye catcher drafted in top eight rounds since 1972.
Cropley is the third player in Heller’s Iowa tenure to get the call to the Majors, joining Nick Allgeyer and Mason McCoy. He is the eighth player to reach MLB who played under Heller, joining Sean Manaea, Dakota Bacus, Colin Rea, Jake Petricka and Ryan Strausborger — all of whom played for Heller at Indiana State.
The Royals face the Toronto Blue Jays today at 2:07 p.m. (CT) at the Rodgers Center in Toronto, Canada.