Dodgers: Keibert Ranked 7th-Best MLB Catching Prospect by Experts
Even after several players graduated to the big leagues last season, the Dodgers still have an elite farm system heading into 2020. It seems like they could graduate Gavin Lux, Dustin May, and Tony Gonsolin amongst others and still maintain that premier system.
It’s wild what Andrew Friedman has been able to do while maintaining a top club in the league
One of the key pieces of the system is catcher Keibert Ruiz, a high-upside backstop with a knack for hitting. Ruiz is consistently ranked in the top-three prospects in the Dodgers’ system and it will likely stay that way barring unforeseen circumstances.
Led by the 2019 No. 1 overall #MLBDraft pick and the '18 No. 2 overall selection, here's our brand-new Top 10 Catching Prospects list for 2020: https://t.co/tw87jaRCw3 pic.twitter.com/KAMlvOqAhJ
— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) January 16, 2020
In a recent column for MLB.com, prospect evaluator Mike Rosenbaum revealed his list of the top-ten catching prospects across Major League Baseball.
Here is the list:
- Adley Rutschman (Orioles)
- Joey Bart (Giants)
- Sean Murphy (A’s)
- Luis Campusano (Padres)
- Francisco Alvarez (Mets)
- Shea Langeliers (Braves)
- Keibert Ruiz (Dodgers)
- Sam Huff (Rangers)
- Daulton Varsho (D’Backs)
- Miguel Amaya (Cubs)
There sits Keibert Ruiz at number seven. At the start of 2019, he was ranked a lot higher. Both the premier draft picks of Rutschman and Langeliers and an injury-shortened down year sunk Ruiz’s ranking.
Last season Ruiz started with Double-A Tulsa and progressed to OKC. He posted a combined 89 wRC+ across the two levels while playing elite defense behind the plate.
Ruiz is still a very, very good prospect and could see time behind the plate as soon as September of 2020. Whether that’s with Los Angeles remains to be seen. Until then, he’ll start the season with Triple-A Oklahoma City and wait for his chance to surface.
He still possesses a 70-grade potential hit tool, according to Fangraphs. Now, all he has to do is deliver on the promise.
NEXT: Catching Prospect Diego Cartaya Called Dodgers Biggest Breakout Candidate in 2020
Still think Austin Barnes is going to be on the spot. He needs to hit at or above .250 or Keibert will be called up. The IL is a bit tighter. We have a 26 man roster to kind of counteract that. But my guess is that all our players with options will be shuttled around. They will keep May’s innings down using the IL and option train. And Keibert may get a call-up or 2 even if Barnes does hit .250. Not sure Austin can maintain a level of offense acceptable over a long term.
Ruiz really regressed last year. I hope he can straighten it out. If he does, maybe he could come up after the all star break for some time with the Dodgers. But he needs to get back on track in the minors first. He’s not ready yet.
I think the Dodgers should bring up Ruiz and make him the back up Catcher. N time like the present to see what he will do. If gets off to a slow start, then send him down and give him a chance to play everyday. White is not the back-up we need and neither is the light hitting Barnes. Should have traded him to the Astros when they were interested in him…
I agree. Make him the backup from opening day or trade him. Didn’t we get rid of Barnes once? I thought someone else picked him up. I have seen all of him that I want to see.