DSL Diamondbacks

League: Dominican Summer League (Rookie)

Record: 29-39 (26th of 35 teams in the Dominican Summer League)

Runs Scored: 333 (9th of 35 teams)

Runs Allowed: 327 (13th of 35 teams)

Recap: this is a tough one to figure out as the Diamondbacks were in the top ten in runs scored and top fifteen in runs allowed, yet finished with the 26th best record in the league. I’m guessing this is due to the fact that they played in a tough division in Boca Chica City. There were plenty of strong offensive performances, including those by Fernery Ozuna (2B), Richi Sanchez (C) and Raul Santana (3B). The team is full of young hitters, so it’s more of a case of following the notable performances as guys advance.

The rotation was stable with four pitchers throwing over 60 innings. All four posted reasonable WHIP’s and did a good job of limiting the walks. In addition to the starters, two of which you’ll read about below, Gabriel Moya put together a nice campaign. The 18-year old lefty was very effective as the team’s closer, striking out 33 and walking five over 30 innings of work. Overall, it was a solid season on the mound for the Diamondbacks but, like the hitters, we’ll have to wait and see the cream rise to the top.

Offensive MVP: Richi Sanchez, C

Sanchez is a left-handed catcher who put up some outstanding numbers in the DSL this season, his debut. In 58 games, he hit .338/.480/.490 for the Diamondbacks with thirteen doubles, four triples and three home runs while stealing ten bases. Perhaps best of all, he walked 49 times compared to only 29 strikeouts, showing excellent plate discipline for a 19-year old. While not physically imposing (5’10″, 185lbs) Sanchez provided a ton of offense from a position that isn’t necessarily known for sluggers. The test will be twofold: can he perform similarly at higher levels and can he stick behind the plate?

Runner Up: Raul Santana, 3B

The 20-year old third baseman split time at the hot corner, but the made most of his opportunities by hitting .328/.426/.544. He racked up 18 extra-base hits in just 38 games, including three home runs. One would expect the power numbers, although already present, to continue to grow as he fills out his fram (5’11″, 155lbs). He was repeating the level as he performed somewhat poorly in the DSL in 2012. He should receive a promotion to begin 2014.

Pitcher MVP: Anthony Basora, LHP

Although reports have indicated that Basora doesn’t have the best raw stuff, one can hardly argue with his 2013 results. He threw over 75 innings, striking out 61 and walking only five to complete his 0.98 WHIP. He’s likely more of a finesse lefty that pitches with feel, limiting his ultimate upside. He was excellent for the Diamondbacks this year but it was his second trip through the DSL. He’s only 18 but needs to show something beyond rookie ball and he may get that chance in 2014.

Runner Up: Anderson Placido, LHP

Placido is another lefty that ate up some solid innings for the DBacks. He threw 66 innings over 11 starts, striking out 83 and walking 23. He didn’t allow many hits either, resulting in a 1.03 WHIP on the year. He was strong in the DSL last year, too, so it should come as no surprise that the 19-year old improved in his second trip through the league. He’ll be 20 in 2014 and definitely one to watch.

Top 5 Prospects

  1. Richi Sanchez, C – it’s hard to argue with the production but he doesn’t have the prototypical size you’d like in a catcher. With that said, he played a number of games at second base this year and if he can continue to hit, he’ll have plenty of stick to play the keystone. He absolutely crushed the league in his first trip through.
  2. Anderson Placido, LHP – I’m  a big fan of his numbers from the left side. His control could stand to improve, and he’s almost 20, but he appears to have more than enough stuff to get the job done. I’m very interested in what he does in 2014, especially considering he received a late-season promotion to Missoula.
  3.  Fernery Ozuna, 2B – the short, wiry, switch-hitting infielder put together a nice campaign, making plenty of contact and stealing the most bases on the team. His 36:11 K:BB ratio over 40 games wasn’t terrible and he played very well after a brief call-up to Missoula.
  4. Raul Santana, 3B – the only knock on Santana is that he’s almost 20 and was repeating the league, but he played extremely well in 2013. There was contact, power and plate discipline, so he appears to be headed in the right direction. He’s got a long way to go, so 2014 is key.
  5. Gabriel Moya, LHP – the lefty had an excellent second stint in the DSL. At only 18-years old, the future looks bright given his strikeout and walk numbers, plus he was tough to hit. 2014 will be a big year as he should see more of a challenge and spend his first season in the United States.

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