LOS ANGELES - The Los Angeles Dodgers today named right-handed pitcher Zach Lee and outfielder Scott Schebler as the Branch Rickey Minor League Pitcher and Player of the Year, respectively.
Lee, who turned 22 on Sept. 13, went 10-10 with a 3.22 ERA in 28 games (25 starts) this season for Double-A Chattanooga, earning a selection as a Southern League mid-season All-Star. The Texas native ranked among the league leaders in wins (T-9th), ERA (9th), innings pitched (142.2, 9th) and strikeouts (131, 3rd).
Lee limited opponents to a .247 batting average and finished the season with a 1.17 WHIP, tying for the third-lowest mark in the Southern League. He walked only 35 in 142.2 innings and posted a 3.74 strikeout-to-walk ratio, the third best among league starters with at least 120.0 innings pitched. He proved to be extra stingy with runners in scoring position, when opponents managed only a .197 batting average (24-for-122), while striking out 40 times.
Lee opened the season on a roll, posting an ERA under 3.00 in each of the season's first two months with a 2.42 ERA (7 ER/26.0 IP) in five April starts (2-1 record) and a 2.87 mark (10 ER/31.1 IP) in six May starts (2-2). He followed that up by earning Southern League Pitcher of the Week honors for the period of May 27-June 2, striking out eight and allowing just two hits in 7.0 scoreless innings in two games (one start).
This was Lee's third professional season after he was selected with the 28th overall pick in the 2010 First-Year Player Draft out of McKinney (Texas) High School and signed by Dodger scout Calvin Jones.
Schebler led Single-A Rancho Cucamonga with a .296 batting average and ranked among the California League leaders with 27 homers (2nd), 95 runs scored (4th), 13 triples (T-3rd), 91 RBI (7th) and a .581 slugging percentage (2nd) in 125 games. He also stole 16 bases and was one of only two California League hitters to finish the campaign with at least 20 home runs and 15 stolen bases. The left-handed hitter was the only Dodger minor leaguer to hit 20 or more doubles, 10 or more triples and 20 or more home runs in 2013.
Schebler, who turns 23 on Oct. 6, caught fire on June 12, when he started a season-high 18-game hitting streak (ended July 2), and batted .322 (94-for-292) with a league-best 44 extra-base hits, 186 total bases, 21 home runs and 67 RBI in 74 games through the conclusion of the season to earn a selection to the California League's Postseason All-Star Team. Schebler was honored as the league's Offensive Player of the Week for the period July 1-7, batting 13-for-29 with eight extra-base hits, including three home runs, and 10 RBI in seven games.
The Iowa native just completed his fourth professional season after being selected in the 26th round of the 2010 First-Year Player Draft out of Des Moines Area Community College and signed by scout Scott Little.
Both Lee and Schebler will be honored in an on-field pregame ceremony prior to Sunday's 1:10 p.m. Dodger regular-season finale against the Colorado Rockies.
Branch Rickey Minor League Player and Pitcher of the Year: 1989-2013
Year Player of the Year Pitcher of the Year
1989 Mike Huff, Albuquerque (OF) Jim Poole, Vero Beach (LHP)
1990 Henry Rodriguez, San Antonio (OF) Jamie McAndrew, Bakersfield/San Antonio (RHP)
1991 Eric Karros, Albuquerque (IB) Pedro Martinez, San Antonio/Albuquerque (RHP)
1992 Mike Piazza, San Antonio/Albuquerque (C) Todd Williams, Bakersfield/San Antonio (RHP)
1993 Billy Ashley, Albuquerque (OF) Kip Gross, Albuquerque (RHP)
1994 Billy Ashley, Albuquerque (OF) Greg Hansell, Albuquerque (RHP)
1995 Adam Riggs, San Bernardino (IF) Gary Rath, San Antonio/Albuquerque (LHP)
1996 Paul Konerko, San Antonio/Albuquerque (IF) Billy Neal, Vero Beach (RHP)
1997 Paul Konerko, Albuquerque (IF) Dennys Reyes, San Antonio/Albuquerque (LHP)
1998 Angel Peña, San Antonio (C) Luke Prokopec, San Bernardino/San Antonio (RHP)
1999 Chin-Feng Chen, San Bernardino (OF) Eric Gagné , San Antonio (RHP)
2000 Joe Thurston, San Bernardino (IF) Carlos Garcia, San Bernardino (RHP)
2001 Phil Hiatt, Las Vegas (IF) Ricardo Rodriguez, Vero Beach (LHP)
2002 Joe Thurston, Las Vegas (IF) Edwin Jackson, South Georgia (RHP)
2003 Franklin Gutierrez, VB/Jacksonville (OF) Greg Miller, Vero Beach/Jacksonville (LHP)
2004 Joel Guzman, Vero Beach/Jacksonville (OF) Chad Billingsley, Vero Beach/Jacksonville (RHP)
2005 Andy LaRoche, Vero Beach/Jacksonville (IF) Chad Billingsley, Jacksonville (RHP)
2006 James Loney, Las Vegas (1B) Mark Alexander, Jacksonville/Las Vegas (RHP)
2007 Chin-lung Hu, Jacksonville/Las Vegas (IF) James McDonald, Inland Empire/Jacksonville (RHP)
2008 Ivan De Jesus, Jr., Jacksonville (IF) James McDonald, Jacksonville/Los Angeles (RHP)
2009 Dee Gordon, Great Lakes (IF) Scott Elbert, Chattanooga/Albuquerque/Los Angeles (LHP)
2010 Jerry Sands, Great Lakes/Chattanooga (IF/OF) Rubby De La Rosa, Great Lakes/Chattanooga (RHP)
2011 Scott Van Slyke, Chattanooga (IF/OF) Shawn Tolleson, Great Lakes/Rancho/Chattanooga (RHP)
2012 Joc Pederson, Rancho Cucamonga (OF) John Ely, Albuquerque (RHP)
2013 Scott Schebler, Rancho Cucamonga (OF) Zach Lee, Chattanooga (RHP)