Along with our recent flurry of stories surrounding many of the prospects on the Dodgers‘ farm came plenty of conversations from several of our regular readers.
Continuing along the same lines of our recent prospect posts, we thought it would be fun to put together another subjective-type of story during a time when the news surrounding the Dodgers is very quiet.
Continuing along with our winter prospect profiles, we dip into the surplus of young starting pitchers lurking in the lower levels of the Dodgers‘ farm.
Although it still hasn’t officially been reported by the team, several stories broke at the beginning of the week stating that the Dodgers have signed righty pitcher Lin Huei-Sheng. Apparently, the contract involves a signing bonus in the vicinity of $300K. It has also been stated that the deal is pending a physical, which may be the reason for the holdup in the club making an official announcement.
For the past several years, the middle infield has been an area of the Dodgers‘ system where there is not an overwhelming number of elite prospects, especially at the lower levels of the farm.
As many of us know, Triple-A starting rotations are very difficult to predict in the middle of the winter. Even though the big league starting five of the Dodgers has been theoretically set for quite some time, injuries, trades and free agent signings can impact all levels of the farm at any moment. Minor league rosters are often decided in the final hours leading to Opening Day, but that doesn’t prevent us from speculating on how things might look at Oklahoma City right now.
As some fans of the Dodgers are still sorting out their thoughts over the exodus of Yasiel Puig, Matt Kemp and Alex Wood, many are focusing on the salary dumps while overlooking the quality of prospects that Los Angeles received in return. Jeter Downs and Josiah Gray are not your typical blue-chip, superstar prospects, but at the same time, both have the tools to make a big league impacts sooner than many think.
As quiet as the offseason has been so far, one of the main focuses of the Dodgers management crew is trying to snag an experienced catcher for the upcoming campaign. Many thought Wilson Ramos, who recently signed a two-year pact with the Mets, was a perfect fit, despite his intentions to remain on the East Coast. But even if Los Angeles is able to land a gem via trade or free agency, what would happen in the event of an injury?
While most of our regular readers already know that we’re huge on prospect insight here at TBPC, we’re not big on rankings, though, as we don’t get many opportunities to evaluate all the organizational prospects in person. However, once every winter I do my own version of positional player rankings, which oftentimes gives us a good idea of the general depth of the Dodgers across the minor league board.
One would need to go back nearly a decade to realize the last time the Dodgers had significant strength and depth at the catching position. Russell Martin was coming off back-to-back All-Star campaigns in 2007 and 2008, while A.J. Ellis was emerging as one of the most reliable backup catchers in the bigs. Plus, there was a Top 5 prospect named Carlos Santana who was revered by every rival GM across the league.