Sergio Pedroza, OF, Los Angeles Dodgers
Pedroza was drafted out of Cal State Fullerton in the third round last year. He hit .324/.458/.616 in college, including 16 homers and 38 walks in 219 at-bats. But his draft stock was hurt by his lack of speed and shaky defensive skills. He has a pretty strong outfield arm, but his range is limited. Still, as a lefthanded hitter with power and patience, he was at least intriguing. But Pedroza hit just .207 in 49 games for Columbus in the Sally League after signing. He hit 12 homers, but his BB/K/AB ratio took a huge step backward from what he did in college, with 16 walks and 58 strikeouts in 49 games. The K-rate was dangerously high, and his ability to adjust to pro pitching was questioned.
Pedroza has really turned things around this year, hitting .306/.477/.604 in a return engagement to Columbus. He's knocked eight homers, but his BB/K/AB ratio has returned to college standards at 29/28/111. More walks than strikeouts, with power production. Gotta love that.
Now, all the caveats apply. He is a college guy in the Sally League. He still has to prove that his defense can be at least adequate. But it's clear that he has made some positive adjustments. We will know more once he gets promoted, but he should be on the radar as a sleeper.