Outfielder Andrew Toles of the Los Angeles Dodgers has had an excellent major league debut. In 99 at-bats over 45 games he's hit .313/.367/.515 with three homers, eight walks, and 25 strikeouts. Despite spending much of 2016 in the majors it looks like he will still count as an eligible rookie entering 2017. Figuring out where to place him on prospect lists will be an interesting exercise.
We wrote a report about Toles last month, but readers have asked for an updated take.
As we noted in August, Toles was a highly-regarded prospect until his career was derailed by personal issues. He was completely out of baseball last year so his surge this season caught a lot of folks (including me) by surprise, however what he's done for the Dodgers is in line (if at the higher end) with what scouts expected from him when he was an amateur.
While seeing a larger sample size would be nice, I really don't think this is a fluke in the big picture. I think he's a legitimate .280+ hitter with at least moderate power. If he stays healthy and avoids further off-field troubles, Toles will have some seasons where he hits over .300. Hell, it wouldn't surprise me if he won a batting championship in the year 2020.
Of course, a lot of things have to go right for that to happen: health, opportunity, luck. But if you're looking for a speculative play with upside, consider Toles.
As far as prospect grades go, what would you guys think about a Grade B?