Dodgers Prospect Watch: Gavin Lux Gaining More Ground

(Joe Camporeale/USA TODAY Sports)

If you’re one of those fans who follows the minor league scene very closely, you’ll know that Sunday marks one of the biggest annual events for the best prospects around baseball—the MLB Futures Game.

Just like the 2019 big league All-Star extravaganza, the Futures Game will take place at Progressive Field in Cleveland, just two full days ahead of the Mid-Summer Classic.

One of the players who is representing the Dodgers this year is infielder Gavin Lux. According to MLB Pipeline, the 21-year-old Wisconsin native is currently ranked as the second-best prospect in the Los Angeles organization and the 31st best in all of baseball.

And, if you haven’t been paying attention, he’s been absolutely tearing the cover off the ball since his promotion to Triple-A Oklahoma City on June 27.

Since arriving at OKC, the left-handed hitting Lux has gone 15-for-30 over seven games, translating to a .500/.545/.833 slash line. Of those 15 hits, seven have been for extra bases.

For the entire season, he’s hitting an extremely impressive .332/.392/.554 with 12 doubles, five triples, 14 long balls and 41 RBI over 289 AB between Double-A Tulsa and Oklahoma City.

What’s more, Lux has tallied 17 assists for OKC without making an error, appearing exclusively at shortstop.

If you’ve been following Lux’s career path, you’ll know that 2018 was his emerging year on the farm. He started the season at Single-A Rancho Cucamonga, batting .312 (72-for-231) with eight home runs and 35 RBI and was named a Mid-Season All-Star.  He continued his dominance in the second half of the season, slashing .346/.396/.528 and was selected as a post-season California League All-Star, finishing among the league leaders in average (.324, 3rd), OBP (.396, 2nd), SLG (.520, 3rd) and OPS (.916, 2nd).  After 88 games with the Quakes, he was promoted to Double-A Tulsa where he hit .324 (34-for-105) with four home runs, nine RBI and a .408 on-base percentage in 28 appearances.

His stellar 2018 season came after a dreadful 2017 campaign when he spent the year exclusively with Low-A Great Lakes. He was mired in an offensive funk for most of the season, hitting just .244/.331/.362 in 458 AB. He did rally to hit over .300 for the final eight weeks of the season, though, and his 27 stolen bases proved how valuable he can be on the basepaths.

“In 2017, I played with a ton of stuff during the season and it kind of messed with me mentally,” Lux told Jonathan Mayo of during 2019 spring training. “Once I kind of figured it out in the offseason going into last year, I was like ‘Man, I’m just going to stick with what I’m doing right now. It feels good, so I’m not going to tinker with my mechanics too much.’ That kind of helped to stay consistent and I could just worry about my approach and game plan going into the games and not worry about mechanics so much.”

Figured it out he has. So long as he can keep his fielding in check, fans of the Dodgers may see Lux wearing the big league Blue at some point during the 2020 campaign. He may need to shift over to the keystone in the majors, but a middle infield of Lux and Corey Seager for the foreseeable future sounds tremendously appealing.

Joining Lux and also representing the Dodgers in the Futures Game is right-handed pitcher Dustin May.

For those hoping to find the game on television on Sunday, it will be aired on the MLB Network.

First pitch is slated for 7:00 PM Eastern time.


32 thoughts on “Dodgers Prospect Watch: Gavin Lux Gaining More Ground

  1. Do we know what the current situation is with his fielding? I know that earlier in the year he was having a problem with his throws. Hopefully, he’s gotten a handle on that. If not, I suppose they might eventually consider shifting him to first with Muncy at second because they certainly will want his bat in the lineup.

    1. I’m leaning on the premise that permanently shifting him to second will help alleviate his throwing problems. Friedman, on the other hand, preaches versatility, so we probably won’t see a move of that nature occurring anytime soon.

      1. Any infield solution that has Muncy at second is not ok with me.

        Lux was a SS in high school. A throwing problem? I don’t understand that. Throws from the infield are all relatively short. Long toss drills from the hole should fix that. Is he projected at 2b? If so, why is now playing SS? He’s about ready for a call up.

        I have always figured Seager would be moved, and I thought third was the logical spot for him. Maybe first is, I don’t know at this point. For a young stud, he sure seems to be injured a lot. We need his bat in the lineup every day. If playing a less demanding defensive position accomplishes that then I’m all for it.

        What is the long term plan here? Rios, Lux, Esteves, Smith, who is listed as C/3b…… there’s also a kid named Amaya, SS/2b, that is rated our 11th best prospect. Where are we going with this?

      2. Best prospect of all might turn out to be Miguel Vargas who is a third baseman, at least for now. Only 19 and just promoted to Rancho Cucamonga.

  2. Trying to figure out who is going to play where is a exercise in futility. Until those kids prove what they can do in the bigs they are nothing more than prospects. Seager is 2 years away from free agency. Turner is getting old fast and is also getting brittle. Muncy is better suited to be a DH. But I think they should concentrate on what is ahead of them this year before worrying about where Lux will end up. Smith and Gonsolin are both on the IL. Carrasco of the Indians has Leukemia and is battling that. Arietta has bone spurs in his elbow and will likely need surgery soon.

    1. I’m sure they are focused on this year Bear. They can walk and chew gum.

      Feels like the plan is to bring one up every year, decide in year 4-5 if they intend to keep them, trade those that we can spare. sprinkle in a FA here and there…. and with a payroll north of $200mm we should be fine if the computers are tuned correctly. This exercise was only to guess who that one might be in ‘20, ‘21 &’22. I have no clear idea who comes up when but prospects numbered 1-3 are most assuredly coming up. On my chart that’s Ruiz, Lux and May.

      1. I am pretty sure that is the case also. There is a rumor out there that they are talking to the Mets about Lugo. Right now I think they need the pitchers to learn to keep the ball in the frippen park.

  3. I went to the game last night guys, paddock looked good, or else we made him look good, and actually maeda looked good also until things went south. When we got the tickets we didn’t realize it was bellinger jersey night, man was it crowded, the fans show up for a give away game. Heck it took fifteen minutes to get through the metal detector.

    1. Saturdays are usually bigger crowds anyway Keith and you coupled that with a give-away which adds to the crowd and then the give-away was an item with the team’s most popular player’s name on it. Bingo – the triple whammy.

  4. How far out do you guys think May is, could he compete for one of the rotation spots next year, or is he a 2021 player

    1. Part of the answer to your question is who we’ll have around as starters next year. Looks like Kershaw, Buehler and probably Urias for sure. Maeda is likely. I would say Ryu is 50-50 and Hill is unlikely. If May absolutely went crazy in OKC for the rest of the year, he’d have a shot, but I’m guessing they’ll take it slowly with him and probably give him at least another 1/2 year in the minors next year, if not the whole season. He hasn’t been spectacular this year so there won’t be any huge desire to rush him. That’s my opinion. I’m sure others have different thoughts.

  5. No kidding Jeff, I like going to the ballpark, but I usually try to avoid the games that are going to be as crowded as last night. With that many fans it got real loud when we got runners on base, which wasn’t very often last night.

  6. About Ruiz, although he is rated higher than Smith, I do not think he is that close to being MLB ready. He still is struggling at AA level. I think Smith makes the roster before he does. Next year for sure. I am pretty sure guys like Rios and Garlick have had their one shot with the Dodgers. Not only is there only 1 trade deadline, the rosters can only expand to 28 on the 1st of September. No veteran help will be available on the 31st of August. So if they decide they need someone, he is going to have to come from AAA.

  7. As for Ryu, I am not really sure they will pursue him in his free agency. With May, Urias and Gonsolin waiting in the wings, he is redundant. Hill will not be back. He will be 40 years old coming off of a injury riddled year. As good as he has been for the Dodgers, Dick Mountains time has come to an end. Lets hope he is healthy come August so he can contribute to a Dodger championship.

    1. We also have Gonsolin, White and Santana in our top 10. Something has to happen with them soon as they’ve been through the system and have nowhere else to go. We won’t use all of them I figure one of them will be used in the Smith/Greene trade.

      1. Gonsolin is on the IL. White is 4-4 between OKC and Tulsa, and Santana is 2-7 at OKC with an ERA north of 6. I don’t think any of those guys are much help over the next year or so.

  8. May just finished his inning at the Futures Game. 8 pitches, 3 ground balls, 3 outs. Stuff looked great. One of the hitters was even talking about it back in the dugout.

  9. Old baseball saying, do not give your opponent hope. Over the last 3 games the Dodgers not only gave the Padres hope, they gave them the idea that they can hang with the league leaders and beat them when ever they want too. Offense has been pitiful the last 3 days, but what is more alarming is the defense, and the continued struggles of Cody Bellinger on offense. Cody has not hit a ball hard since his 30th homer the other day and his average has dipped about 10 points in the last few days. I did notice that when Turner hit his homer, he did not have an open stance like he had earlier in the series. Pederson ought to forget the HR derby. He hasn’t hit one in a game for over 2 weeks. His performance in this series mirrors the rest of this impotent team at this point. I am glad that the break is here because when they come back on Friday they will have 3 more proven MLB bats instead of 3 rookies to count on. The kids did ok, but you cannot replace experience with raw talent.

  10. It’s the all star break. We’ve seen what guys can do. Can we PLEASE move on from Barnes and Kike?

    1. OK Rich. We all agree that these two are major holes in the lineup. Question for you is, who do you get to replace them and what kind of value, if any do they have on the trade market. There are a ton of no-hit good defense catchers out there and the Padres just showed 2 of them. Neither Hedges or Mejia are hitting a lick, but they provide solid defense. Barnes does the same. as does Martin. Smith is injured and out for a while. You are not going to throw a rookie catcher into the heat of a pennant race, and there are no real good hitting catchers on the market. If they wanted a good hitter, they should have kept Grandal. But look where Milwaukee is even with him. Kike on the other hand is a defensive wiz with a bat that has some pop. But, he also is about as close to an automatic out as there is. Now, with Seager coming back, he gores back to his super sub role along with Taylor. The lineup is going to look like this a lot of the time except when lefty’s pitch, Pederson 1B, Muncy, 2B, Seager SS, Turner 3B, Verdugo, LF, Pollock, CF, Bellinger, RF, and Barnes and Martin switching off behind the plate like they have all year. Kike, Taylor and Freese will be in there against LHP. Bank on it.

  11. Padres will likely end over .500, but they are no match for us yet. Make no mistake though, they’re coming.

    Frankly Bear I never thought this was a great defensive team. I know the DRS numbers say otherwise, but the eye test tells me a different story. We win with offense and pitching. Right now the offense is in a funk. It happens to all good teams over 162 games. I’m not alarmed. Yet.

  12. I think they are better defensively if Taylor is at second with Seager at short, but to keep Muncy and Pederson’s bat in the game, they will have Muncy at second and Joc at first which makes the right side of the infield a defensive liability.

  13. Toles is on the restricted list. He is home with his family working out what ever it is that is eating him. I doubt he ever wears a Dodger uni again and most likely he will be released after the season. Too bad, injury’s derailed his career, and then his other problems have not helped.

  14. Here is a head scratcher. Farhan said in a recent interview that the Giants may be buyers at the deadline. His reasoning is that the Giants now are only 5.5 games back of Philadelphia for the second wild card slot. Myself, I think he is dreaming. But the entire NL is really bunched together except for the Dodgers and the Braves who have significant leads in their division.

    1. Hmmmmmmmm. Maybe they could use Bellinger for a couple of their better prospects.
      As I see it, today, there are about six MLB teams who are no longer pretending to be buyers: Miami, Detroit, KC, Baltimore, Seattle and Toronto. All the others are within 7 games of a wildcard spot with at least 70 games to play so they are trying to keep their fans interested by announcing they may be buyers. That should mean that every July trade with a team other than those mentioned above will be consummated within the last hour on July 31st.
      And don’t look now, but if the season ended today, Washington would be a wildcard team.

      1. I have no clue why he said that, but the Giants have won 15 of their last 25 games. So who knows. They are definitely not a playoff team.

    2. I don’t believe it. Might be a play to put b.i.s.. That’s not a playoff team. Attendance is down a few thousand up there. He’d be wise to go with a rebuild.

      I hope Bellinger is able to stretch out and get some sleep over the next few days. I also hope he doesn’t take that Derby sh*t seriously. As for the pitchers, an inning won’t hurt them. I hope.

      1. Belli is not in the derby, Pederson is. So I would not worry about that. The Farhan thing was on MLBtrade rumors.

      2. Your right. My mistake. Pederson won’t be as adversely effected by that fiasco. He’s been swinging for the fences longer than Bellinger has, and being a role player he doesn’t need as much time off.

  15. Like I mentioned, sometimes I have edit capability, sometimes I don’t. Today I don’t.

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