Which Pitching Prospect Will Emerge First for Dodgers?

So far this season, we have already seen 25 different pitchers appear for the Los Angeles Dodgers in some capacity — 26 if you count Hanser Alberto’s outing on Wednesday against the Diamondbacks. Last year, there were 39 pitchers to throw for the Dodgers, indicating that fans could be in store for even more new faces as the 2022 season progresses.

Without question, this year’s trade deadline will bring its usual hype as the summer months draw near. However, there’s been a lot of attention given to several prospects on the farm lately, as some of the organization’s top pitching prospects have already made their MLB debuts.

Over the last few years, we have seen arms like Mitch White, Andre Jackson and the departed Edwin Uceta given their chances without any overwhelming success. Sure, White and Jackson have shown signs of quality stuff — and there’s still time for them to emerge — but much of the franchise’s focus has shifted on some of the organization’s blue chippers on the farm.

So which prospect will emerge first? Specifically, which youngster will secure a rotation spot and cement himself as a member of the starting five for the foreseeable future?

Ryan Pepiot

Currently sitting at No. 6 in the organization’s top prospects list is 24-year-old righty Ryan Pepiot. So far, he has been given two starts and outside of a few minor bright spots, hasn’t wowed the Los Angeles fan base. It’s easy to see that Pepiot has the talent to succeed, but until he harnesses his command, he might not be the best available option.

Over his two MLB starts, Pepiot has thrown seven full innings, allowing three earned runs on three hits. That doesn’t sound bad, but his eight walks are intolerable.

Michael Grove

Like Pepiot, Michael Grove had his own case of control problems, or the jitters if you will, when he walked three batters in his MLB debut against the Phillies last week. Also like Pepiot, Grove was able to crank his fastball past the 95 mph mark. If it wasn’t for an untimely infielding error by Gavin Lux, Grove’s debut might have “felt” much better than the scoreboard indicated, even though he wasn’t charged with any earned runs.

I’m speaking subjectively, of course, but it seemed to me that Grove was just a tad more polished in his delivery than Pepiot. Coincidentally, Grove is ranked way down at No. 23 on the club’s prospect list.

Bobby Miller

Currently sitting at the No. 2 prospect ranking is 23-year-old righty Bobby Miller. Although he isn’t anywhere near the major league roster, Miller captured the hearts of many when he was clocked at triple digits multiple times in the 2022 Cactus League Freeway Series — on his birthday, no less.

After a slow start to the year, Miller is finally coming around at Double-A Tulsa. He has been able to shrink an ERA that was once above 6.00 close to 4.00. In his last start against Frisco last weekend, he threw five scoreless innings, allowing just three hits and a walk while striking out five.

Miller’s nowhere near the 40-man roster at this point, but stranger things have happened in the past.

With Andrew Heaney still weeks away and Clayton Kershaw still not on a clear timetable, we could see Pepiot and Grove be given at least another look, unless the team has interest in seeing Jackson throw first.

Dodgers Prospect Watch: A Closer Look at Michael Grove

As the pitching carousel continues to turn for the Los Angeles Dodgers, another generation of players are getting their chances on the big-league stage.

Last week, fans had the chance to see 24-year-old righty Ryan Pepiot throw in the majors for the first time. On Sunday in the series finale against the Phillies, they’ll be able to see 25-year-old right-hander Michael Grove.

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Michael Busch Making Noise at Double-A Tulsa

24-year-old second baseman Michael Busch has gotten off to his hottest start as a professional.

Through his first 20 games at Double-A Tulsa this year, the lefty-hitting Minnesota native is slashing an impressive .286/.446/.671 with eight homers, three doubles and 20 RBI. What’s even more impressive is that he’s already drawn 19 walks, indicating a growing patience at the plate after punching out 129 times last year.

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Triple-A Oklahoma City Names Opening Day Starter

As the big-league club continues to put the finishing touches on its 2022 Opening Day roster, the minor league affiliates are following suit.

The Triple-A Oklahoma City Dodgers announced on Sunday that 24-year-old righty Ryan Pepiot will take the mound at home on Tuesday night against the Albuquerque Isotopes at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark. Broadcaster Alex Freedman also reported that 25-year-old right-hander Andre Jackson will start Thursday’s game, but he gave no indication who might start the second game on Wednesday night.

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Dodgers Prospect Watch: A Closer Look at James Outman

If you’re a minor league baseball fan, one of the coolest things about spring training is seeing some of the most promising young prospects taking hacks against big-league pitching. What’s even more interesting is when some of these players are freshly anointed to the 40-man roster, knowing that their respective regular-season debuts could be coming soon.

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Dodgers Prospect Watch: A Closer Look at Hyun-il Choi

With the absence of major league action and the beginning of minor league camp, most of the emphasis is on the Los Angeles farm system, at least for fans of the Dodgers. This comes with good reason, as some of the Los Angeles blue chip prospects are among the best in the game.

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Dodgers Prospect Watch: How Close Is Miguel Vargas?

As everyone patiently waits for the MLB lockout to end, speculation remains at its highest point of the winter. Fans of the Dodgers, specifically, continue to wonder if the new CBA — along with a few other factors — will have a significant impact on how much money the team will spend on player payroll once everything gets moving again.

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Latest Lockout Updates, Other Dodgers Notes

We are almost through January and we are still in a lockout. Nothing has been moving — so with no news, it has been hard to know where both sides potentially stand.

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Dodgers Score Big With International Free Agent Signings

The Dodgers have always been known as one of the biggest and most formidable players in the international free agent market, and 2022 is no exception.

In 2021, the signing period began on January 15 and ran through December. The same rules apply to this year. Prior to the pandemic, the signing period didn’t begin until July.

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Dodgers Prospect Watch: What Lies Ahead for Michael Busch?

So far this winter, most of our prospect talk has surrounded pitching and catching, which always seems to make up the higher rankings of the Dodgers’ farm. However, with Corey Seager now out of the shortstop picture, some of the emphasis could switch to the middle infield spots, if things ever get rolling again roster-wise.

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