Los Angeles Dodgers Top 20 PRE-SEASON Prospects in Review
This list was originally published December 28, 2008. This is a REVIEW of the PRE-SEASON list for 2009, not a revision of that list. This is a REVIEW of the old list. I'm not doing new grades or lists until I start working on the 2010 book.
1) James McDonald, RHP, Grade B+: 4.11 ERA with 35/27 K/BB in 50 innings for the Dodgers, 46 hits. I think he's capable of better.
2) Ethan Martin, RHP, Grade B: 4.02 ERA with 109/60 K/BB in 94 innings for Class A Great Lakes, 81 hits allowed. Strong K/IP and hit ratios reflect stuff, but needs to throw more strikes.
3) Ivan DeJesus JR, SS, Grade B: Out all year with a broken leg.
4) Andrew Lambo, OF, Grade B: Hitting .259/.312/.417 for Double-A Chattanooga. Hit .321/.383/.548 in April, but performance has been mediocre ever since.
5) Josh Lindblom, RHP, Grade B-: 4.00 ERA with 75/26 K/BB in 92 innings between Double-A and Triple-A, with particularly good performance at Albuquerque. Has come a long way very quickly.
6) Devaris Gordon, SS, Grade B-: hitting .305/.367/.401 with 69 steals in 93 attempts for Great Lakes. Lacks home run power, but speed and gap power look strong and he's made progress refining his skills. Stock definitely up.
7) Ramon Troncoso, RHP, Grade C+: 2.66 ERA with 43/26 K/BB in 71 innings, a very solid rookie season.
8) Scott Elbert, LHP, Grade C+: 3.84 ERA with 125/44 K/BB in 96 innings between Double-A and Triple-A, 15/3 K/BB with 4.80 ERA in 15 major league innings.
9) Austin Gallagher, 3B, Grade C+: .257/.319/.345 in 60 games for Great Lakes, on DL since July 4th. Obviously not living up to potential.
10) Josh Bell, 3B, Grade C+: Traded to Orioles, hitting .298/.383/.507 in Double-A this year. Coming along nicely.
11) Xavier Paul, OF, Grade C+: Has missed most of the season with a staph infection and a fractured ankle.
12) Chris Withrow, RHP, Grade C+: 4.72 ERA with 123/54 K/BB in 109 innings between Class A Inland Empire and Double-A. ERA is rather deceptive, as his component ratios have been pretty solid, though walk rate needs to come down. Breakthrough candidate for 2010.
13) Justin Miller, RHP, Grade C+: 5.14 ERA with 78/60 K/BB in 140 innings, 163 hits between Great Lakes and Inland Empire. Best mark is 2.96 GO/AO ratio, but low strikeout rate and excessive hittability are bad signs.
14) Tony Delmonico, 2B, Grade C+: Hitting .285/.383/.430 for Great Lakes, converted to catcher, where he has performed adequately but needs more experience.
15) Pedro Baez, 3B, Grade C: Hitting .286/.326/.445 for Inland Empire. Needs better plate discipline.
16) Jaime Hoffman, OF, Grade C: Hitting .290/.387/.454 with 15 steals in 25 attempts between Double-A and Triple-A. Controls the zone well, has a touch of power and speed, but probably a Quadruple-A guy who will get stuck on the fringes.
17) Jesus Castillo, RHP, Grade C: 4.40 ERA with 80/52 K/BB in 141 innings for Chattanooga, 145 hits. Mediocre performance overall.
18) Kyle Russell, OF, Grade C: Hitting .273/.367/.549 with 26 homers, 15 steals in 17 attempts, 65 walks, 169 strikeouts in 455 at-bats for Great Lakes. Very impressive power/speed production, with lots of walks, but that strikeout rate is scary.
19) Nathan Eovaldi, RHP, Grade C: 3.49 ERA with 66/38 K/BB in 90 innings, 92 hits for Great Lakes. Rated as a sleeper pre-season, he hasn't really broken through but hasn't been bad either. Just 19 years old, has pitched better in the second half.
20) Javy Guerra, RHP, Grade C: 1.54 ERA with 55/15 K/BB in 41 innings for Great Lakes, 3.91 ERA with 23/16 K/BB in 23 innings for Chattanooga. Control took a step backwards after promotion, but he did skip a level.
The Dodgers farm system has thinned out over recent seasons, though the development of Gordon is a big help. Martin is a big breakthrough candidate for 2010, and Eovaldi, Delmonico, and Winthrop must all be watched closely. Lambo got a lot of hype with his hot start but his final Double-A line is going to be unimpressive overall. The 2009 draft adds a nice mixture of college and high school talent to the system, so the prospect list for '10 will look considerably different.