Dominican Summer League Dodgers 2011 Season Review: Hitters

Dominican Summer League Dodgers: Pitchers

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Same awesome picture, this time with actual athletes!

Today, I will continue the 2011 season reviews for the Dodgers minor league affiliates, now with the hitters of the Dominican Summer League Dodgers.

It’s worth noting that I’ll be picking the prospects for the 2012 Prospective Prospect Profiles list from these reviews, so it might be worth reading. Or not.

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Webster Rivas – C – 20

Webster Rivas Statistics

Rivas took steps forward in 2011, more than doubling his walk rate (5.0%|11.1%) and upping his wOBA from .329 to .363. Additionally, he continued his strong defensive performance, throwing out 49% of runners, up from 46% of runners last year.

On the basis of his 2011 and at his current age, the Dodgers essentially have to move him to America if they even think of him as future organizational depth.

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Josmar Cordero – C – 19

Josmar Cordero Statistics

Another catcher who showed progress in 2011, Cordero upped his wOBA from .340 to .385, bettered his walk rate (6.8%|7.1%), reduced his strikeout rate (13.6%|12.8%), and increased his ISO (.131/.138). The peripheral improvements are marginal, but still promising nonetheless.

At this level, scouting reports are what actually matter, but they’re unfortunately extremely rare to find, and casual observers such as myself have no way of obtaining video on them. Luckily, in the case of Cordero, Baseball America reported that he has good catch and throw skills (48%/39% CS) and solid power.

I would think this means the Dodgers will be on pace to move him to America in 2012.

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Leo Rodriguez – SS – 19

Leo Rodriguez Statistics

On the surface, Rodriguez took a step back in 2011, with his wOBA falling from .366 to .344, but he actually continued his progress. For one, he moved from a primary second baseman to a primary shortstop, and for another, he basically sustained his peripherals while facing a larger sample size (161/239 PA).

While his walk rate dropped (10.6%|8.8%), so did his strikeout rate (13.0%|9.6%), and his ISO almost doubled (.029/.057). As such, he ends 2011 as a solid candidate to move to America in 2012.

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Melvin Santana – 2B – 19

Melvin Santana Statistics

Yet another older Dominican Summer League product making his professional debut for the Dodgers, Santana made it count, putting up a .354 wOBA with a 10.9% walk rate, 12.2% strikeout rate, and a .099 ISO.

Moreover, he stole 10 bases and was caught 3 times, which makes me speculate that perhaps his .283 BABIP was a bit low considering his projected speed and the defense of the league.

I’m guessing he finds himself back in the DSL for 2012.

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Gregory Pena – OF – 19

Gregory Pena Statistics

Born in New York, New York, he wasn’t in the MLB draft, and the Dodgers signed him as an international free agent prior to 2010.

In 2010, he struggled a bit, posting a .317 wOBA and .028 ISO. He struck out at a marginally high rate (17.9%), but mitigated that a bit with solid plate discipline (11.5%) and good speed (14/19 SB/SBA).

2011 was a different story though, as it was a year that marked significant growth. Pena posted a .425 wOBA and his ISO jumped to .138, all while maintaining his walk rate (10.6%) and reducing strikeouts (14.2%). Oh and the speed took an uptick as well, swiping 23 bases in 29 attempts.

Pena was undoubtedly the best hitting prospect for the Dominican Summer League Dodgers, and he capped his season by being awarded the August version of the Dodger Pride Awards. I assume he will be given a shot in America in 2012, as I’m not sure what else he could do in this league.

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Arce Rodriguez – LF – 18

Arce Rodriguez Statistics

At 17, Rodriguez was terrible in the DSL, posting a .255 wOBA, walking just 1.9% of the time, and striking out 20.8% of the time while putting up no power (0 HR/.042 ISO).

At 18 though, he showed the progress that you want at this level, walking 6.2% of the time and reducing strikeouts (19.6%). Perhaps most importantly for his position though, he started mashing more, bombing 4 homers and almost tripling his ISO (.124). Unsurprisingly, this led to a 116 point increase in wOBA, up to .371.

He’s still young, so unless the Dodgers see him as a legitimate prospect, I’m not sure they move him to America, but we’ll see.

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