The Dodgers wrapped up their 2013 MLB Draft a while ago, but reactions are still rolling in. For the most part, pundits seem to agree that the Dodgers went conservative, electing for low-ceiling, low-risk picks. I felt the same way about the team’s selections, so there’s not much to argue back-and-forth with in that regard.
Dodgers 2013 Draft Recap
John Sickels of Minor League Ball only mentions one player (Chris Anderson) that appears to be a potential starter on a Tier 1 team.
Curiously conservative for a Dodgers draft, so perhaps all the money spent on the free agent and international market has pulled things back a bit financially. That’s not to say there isn’t talent here. Anderson is a big hard-throwing horse in the Dodgers mold, Windle is a potential fifth starter or relief option who could advance quickly. Dixon looks like a solid role player but hard to profile as a regular due to lack of power. Community college pitchers Underwood and Rhame should be signable in these spots; Rhame has the stronger arm, Underwood the greater pitchability. The Dodgers liking for bloodlines shows up in the 12th round with the selection of Adam Law (son of Vance, grandson of Vernon) out of BYU. He’s a future utilityman.
ESPN‘s Keith Law sees much of the same, though his profile of Jacob Rhame is promising.
This doesn’t feel like a Dodgers draft, with no high-upside high school picks mixed in here at all. Chris Anderson (18) does fit what the Dodgers like in pitchers, as he has size, velocity and has shown a plus slider, hitting a rough stretch in April after the Dolphins overused him in the season’s first six weeks. Minnesota lefty Tom Windle (56) profiles as either a back-end starter or good reliever, a command/finesse pitcher with average stuff but very good feel. Brandon Dixon (92) is currently a third baseman but has to move either to an outfield corner or to first base, and he doesn’t have the power (slugging just .362 away from Tucson) or patience (15 unintentional walks in 247 PA) to profile in those spots.
Cody Bellinger (124), son of former True Yankee Clay Bellinger, is a first-base-only high school hitter with a loose swing and some power potential if you really dream on him, but he didn’t look physically ready for pro ball and was seen by many area scouts as a college guy this year. Right-hander JD Underwood (154) has a fringy fastball with good feel and could end up a three-pitch guy with nothing plus. Right-hander Jacob Rhame (184) has good sink on his low-90s fastball with above-average control, but right now his curve and changeup are both below average. Adam Law (364) is not related to me.
Baseball America adds Cody Bellinger and Greg Harris to the intriguing names from the draft for the team.
Despite a track record of aggressively drafting high school pitchers, the Dodgers landed premium college arms with their first two picks in Jacksonville righthander Chris Anderson (first round) and Minnesota lefthander Tom Windle (second). They went to Arizona for college third baseman Brandon Dixon (third) and prep first baseman Cody Bellinger (fourth), who has drawn Adam LaRoche comparisons. UC Santa Barbara shortstop Brandon Trinkwon (seventh) entered the year as a second-team All-American, but hit just .280/.367/.384 this year and may wind up moving to second base. Southern California prep righthander Greg Harris (17th) has interesting upside and big league bloodlines.
Worth nothing, though, is that the Dodgers were tied for the least amount of players drafted in the Baseball America Top 500.
Dodgers (10 total, 3 top 100, 5 top 200, average: 237)
Chris Anderson (45), Tom Windle (47), Brandon Dixon (154), Cody Bellinger (91), J.D. Underwood (438), Jacob Rhame (172), Brandon Trinkwon (307), Spencer Navin (398), Blake Hennessey (482), Thomas Taylor (496).
So by most accounts, this was a very atypical Dodger draft. And while I would love to disagree with the conclusions of the pundits about the potential of this class, I’ve already said similar to what they have about the overall quality of this group last week myself.
Besides Chris Anderson, it really is difficult to profile anybody in this draft as a potential starter on a quality team. However, there are a bunch of potential middle relievers and utility players. Those types do have value — for the reason we’re all watching unfold now as the 2013 Dodgers — but they’re not typically what you want your best projected players from the draft to top out as.
Just hope that everybody is wrong.