Wednesday, November 25, 2009

My Top 30 Dodger Prospects

Here is a list of my top 30 Dodger prospects. Baseball America will release its Dodger top 10 list on Dec. 4. All players who have not reached 50 innings pitched or 130 at-bats in the Major Leagues are eligible for this list. Ages are as of opening day, 2010.

1. Dee Gordon SS (5'11, 160 lbs., 21 years old)
Son of Tom, Dee Gordon nearly established himself as an elite minor league prospect after his 2009 season. He was named the 2009 Midwestern League Player of the Year. He has drawn comparisons to Jose Reyes. He is easily the Dodgers' best prospect.
2010 location: High-A Inland Empire ETA: mid-2011

2. Ethan Martin RHP (6'2, 195 lbs., 20 years old)
Martin had some flashes of brilliance (10.8 K/9, 0.4 HR/9, .232 BAA), but still has some work to do. He must improve his control (5.5 BB/9), but there's no doubt the 2008 No. 15 pick has the potential to be a front-of-the-rotation starter.
2010 location: High-A Inland Empire, possible call-up to Double-A Chattanooga ETA: mid-2011

3. Chris Withrow RHP (6'3, 195 lbs., 21 years old)
It's eerie how similar Martin and Withrow are. Both were mid-first-round picks, both have similar arsenals and both had breakthrough seasons in 2009. Withrow earned a late-season call-up to Double-A and actually had better numbers there, albeit a small sample size.
2010 location: Double-A Chattanooga, possible call-up to Triple-A or Los Angeles ETA: 2011

4. Josh Lindblom RHP (6'5, 240 lbs., 22 years old)
Lindblom impressed the Dodgers in Spring Training, but ultimately never sniffed the Bigs in 2009. He worked as a starter in Double-A and a reliever in Triple-A. The Dodgers want to keep him as a starter because they know he can always go back to relieving.
2010 location: Triple-A Albuquerque with a likely call-up to Los Angeles ETA: 2010

5. Aaron Miller LHP (6'3, 200 lbs., 22 years old)
Miller, the Dodgers' 2009 first-round pick, surprised many folks, including myself. He wasn't the typical projectable high school pitcher scouting director Logan White is accustomed to selecting. He was drafted out of college, and some teams liked him for his bat more out of Baylor. Miller has a chance to top this list with a solid performance in 2010.
2010 location: High-A Inland Empire with a likely call-up to Double-A Chattanooga ETA: 2011

6. Andrew Lambo OF/1B (6'3, 190 lbs., 21 years old)
Lambo was my Dodger No. 1 prospect heading into the season, and he was also Baseball America's choice. Lambo got off to a hot start, but was rather pedestrian for a majority of the season. His numbers across the board fell, but is still the best pure hitter in the Dodgers' system. He was playing against older competition in Double-A and he'll need to bounce back from a sub-par performance in 2009.
2010 location: Double-A Chattanooga ETA: mid-2011

7. Ivan De Jesus SS/2B (5'11, 182 lbs., 22 years old)
De Jesus lost most of his 2009 season to a broken leg in Spring Training. He is one of the most polished prospects in the Dodgers' system, but he tends to try to do too much in the field at times. He has the best plate discipline of any Dodger prospect and could be in line to compete for the starting second base job in Los Angeles.
2010 location: Triple-A Albuquerque or Los Angeles ETA: 2010

8. Nathan Eovaldi RHP (6'3, 195 lbs., 20 years old)
Eovaldi is like Martin and Withrow, but not quite on that level. His ceiling is likely as a middle-of-the-rotation guy with a chance to be a decent No. 2 -- at best. However, he made strides this season and could improve his outlook with a good performance in 2010.
2010 location: High-A Inland Empire with a likely call-up to Double-A Chattanooga ETA: 2012

9. Carl (Allen) Webster RHP (6'2, 165 lbs., 20 years old)
Webster is another Dodger prospect who shot up the rankings after his 2009 performance. He didn't pitch a lot, but when he did pitch, he was quite good. He has a long way to go, but could be a sleeper-type prospect. He still hasn't filled out his frame, so he is projectable. Son of current Dodger scout and former Dodger Mitch Webster.
2010 location: Low-A Great Lakes with potential call-up to High-A or Double-A ETA: 2012

10. Trayvon Robinson OF (5'11, 175 lbs., 21 years old)
Robinson has always had the tools and ability, but he never put it together... until now. He had a breakout season in 2009 and has a chance to build on it in 2010. He's the Dodgers' best five-tool prospect since Matt Kemp, but he isn't even close to that level (nor will he ever be). He has a chance to be a regular in the Majors, if he continues to improve.
2010 location: Double-A Chattanooga ETA: 2012

The best of the rest

11. Anthony (Tony) Delmonico C
Could shoot up if his bat stays solid and he sticks behind the plate, has been a .300/.400/.500 guy in the minors; one of my personal favorite prospects
12. Kyle Russell OF
Too many strikeouts, but his power, glove are the best in the system
13. Garrett Gould RHP
First-round talent, fell to the late second round, could be in the top 10 next year
14. Scott Elbert LHP
Former top 10 guy, this is his make-or-break year
15. Xavier Paul OF
A nice fourth outfielder-type; could be a regular on a bad team
16. Blake Smith OF
Opposite of Miller, as teams looked at Smith more as a pitcher
17. Scott Van Slyke OF
Had a breakout year, but is already 23 years old and barely cracked Triple-A
18. Tim Sexton RHP
Probably profiles better as a reliever, but will stick as a starter for as long as he can
19. Pedro Baez 3B
Perhaps the most talented of any Dodger prospect, but hasn't been able to put it all together
20. Jon Michael Redding RHP
No. 4/5 rotation guy with solid control
21. Jeremy Wise C
Has a chance to be good, but he has to get it going now
22. Russell Mitchell 1B/3B
Had a breakout Arizona Fall League season, but is probably nothing more than a AAAA player
23. Javy (Luis) Guerra RHP
Has the stuff, but needs to get his control down; finally in the pen, where he belongs
24. Justin Miller RHP
Fringe-type guy; probably no more than a mi*ddle reliever
25. Austin Gallagher 3B/1B
The guy who fell the hardest from last year; just hasn't hit enough
26. Brett Wallach RHP
Son of Tim, Brett was a 2009 draft pick and is a work in progress
27. Lucas May C
He came into last season as the possible heir apparent to Russell Martin (if there's such a thing), struggled, went back to Double-A and hit well; probably no more than a backup
28. Kenley Jansen RHP
Converted catcher, has a rocket arm and could be a sleeper
29. Brent Leach LHP
Had a taste of the Majors this year, but is just a LOOGY... except he gets right-handers out more often
30. Tae-Hyeok Nam 1B/3B
Big time sleeper here; played in only three games after coming over from Korea; still very young (19 on opening day)

Best of the Dodger System

Best Hitter for Average Andrew Lambo
Best Power Hitter Kyle Russell
Best Strike-Zone Discipline Ivan De Jesus
Fastest Baserunner Dee Gordon
Best Athlete Dee Gordon
Best Fastball Kenley Jansen
Best Curveball Chris Withrow
Best Slider Josh Lindblom
Best Changeup
Best Sinker
Brent Leach
Brett Wallach
Best Control Aaron Miller
Best Defensive Catcher A.J. Ellis
Best Defensive Infielder Dee Gordon
Best Infield Arm Pedro Baez
Best Defensive Outfielder Kyle Russell
Best Outfield Arm
Best Five-Tool Prospect
Xavier Paul
Trayvon Robinson

Projected 2013 Lineup

Catcher Russell Martin
First Base James Loney
Second Base Ivan De Jesus
Third Base Blake DeWitt
Shortstop Dee Gordon
Left Field Andrew Lambo
Center Field Matt Kemp
Right Field Andre Ethier
No. 1 Starter Clayton Kershaw
No. 2 Starter Chad Billingsley
No. 3 Starter Ethan Martin
No. 4 Starter Chris Withrow
No. 5 Starter Aaron Miller
Closer Johathan Broxton

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