Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Most surprising and disappointing Dodgers' prospects for 2013

There are surprises and disappointments in every sport, every year. I'm focusing on the Dodger prospects who surprised and disappointed.

Believe it or not, the "surprise" list was tougher to compile than expected. It's always easy to find the prospects who underperformed or didn't meet expectations.

No one in their right mind expected Julio Urias to do what he did in the Midwest League in his age-16 season, so he’s in a class all by himself.

The age listed is the player's age for the 2013 season.

Most surprising players

Noel Cuevas, OF, 21 years old
.284/.341/.454, 12 HR, 66 RBI, 38 SB, 6.9% BB rate
2013 Top 50 ranking: Not ranked
2013 Top 25 midseason: 24
- Cuevas had a pedestrian 2012 season across three minor-league levels. He was promoted to Rancho Cucamonga for the 2013 season and had his best year to date. He led the Quakes in stolen bases while playing predominantly center field. He was also one of three Quakes to post at least 20 doubles, 10 triples and 10 home runs. He could be a product of his environment, as he posted an OPS 157 points better at home than he did on the road. The conditions at LoanMart Field (The Epicenter) are fairly neutral, so a better indicator of his true skill at the plate could come next season in Chattanooga in his age-22 season.

Joey Curletta, OF, 19 years old
.326/.402/.461, 5 HR, 42 RBI, 41 R, 10.3% BB rate
2013 Top 50 ranking: NR
2013 Top 25 midseason: NR
- Despite playing in short-season ball, Curletta showed marked improvement from last season. The Dodgers’ sixth-round draft pick in 2012, Curletta established himself as one of the Ogden Raptors’ best hitters, posting an improved walk rate and a reduced strikeout rate. Curletta could be a big-time sleeper heading into 2014. He’ll need to prove himself in full-season ball. Here’s hoping he opens the season as the Loons’ right fielder. His massive power potential bodes well for his future, too.

Scott Schebler, OF, 22 years old
.296/.360/.581, 27 HR, 91 RBI, 95 R, 6.5% BB rate
2013 Top 50 ranking: 37
2013 Top 25 midseason: 18
- Schebler was my choice for first-team outfielder on my all-prospect team, and he was quite surprising in 2013. The talent was there, even if the results didn’t show it in 2012. He was the Quakes’ MVP in 2013, leading the team in virtually every major offensive category. And he posted good reverse platoon splits, which bodes well for him going forward. He’ll likely be one of the Lookouts’ best hitters next season, so he’ll need to prove 2013 wasn’t a fluke. He’s a corner outfielder long-term. He has enough arm for right to be at least average.

Most disappointing players

Garrett Gould, RHP, 21 years old
5-12, 6.64 ERA, 1.50 WHIP, 10.0 H/9, 7.9 K/9
2013 Top 50 ranking: 9
2013 Top 25 midseason: NR
- Gould has long since been a favorite of mine, but his prospect star has diminished significantly since the start of the 2012 season. He had a poor showing with the Quakes last year and was even worse in 2013. Despite that, he earned a promotion to Double-A, where he didn't fare much better. The thinking was along the lines of what the Dodgers did with Ethan Martin a couple years ago. He struck out more than a batter per inning in Double-A as a starter and reliever. But his overall numbers in 2013 were disappointing to me.

Andres Santiago, RHP, 23 years old
5-12, 4.97 ERA, 1.42 WHIP, 5.0 BB/9, 7.3 K/9
2013 Top 50 ranking: 18
2013 Top 25 midseason: NR
- Santiago was a surprise prospect last season, posting some really good numbers at High-A and Double-A last year, prompting me to rank him in my presason top 20. His numbers went the wrong way in virtually every category. By all indications, the stuff is still there, but his command went to hell. His 5.0 BB/9 is the worst of his career (save his debut year at age 17). He'll enter his age-24 season with something to prove, but he could be a middle reliever if everything clicks.

Jesus Valdez, 1B/OF, 21 years old
.249/.309/.397, 9 HR, 47 RBI, 41 R, 6.7% BB rate
2013 Top 50 ranking: 24
2013 Top 25 midseason: NR
- Valdez had done all his damage in short-season ball before 2013. He made his full-season debut at Great Lakes, and it was a flop. He posted a .454 OPS in 28 games, prompting a demotion back to Ogden. Valdez will likely get another shot in Great Lakes in 2014, but the numbers are not in his favor. Joc Pederson struggled at Great Lakes in 2011, but he was also 19 years old and has since thrived in the Dodgers' system.

Photo credits: Dustin Nosler, Feelin' Kinda Blue

1 comment:

  1. Dustin, you've got identical stats for Gould and Santiago. BTW, I was also pleasantly surprised by Alex Santana and Jacob Scavuzzo. Hopefully they can continue to improve next season in Low A.