An early look at Dodgers' Minor League affiliates

April 11th, 2023

This story was excerpted from Juan Toribio’s Dodgers Beat newsletter. To read the full newsletter, click here. And subscribe to get it regularly in your inbox.

The Dodgers (6-5) are off to a slow start. They have some work to do to turn things around in the very early part of the season. But for now, let’s take a look at how some of the Dodgers Minor Leaguers have fared to start their respective seasons. 

We’ll continue to track the Minors throughout the season.

Triple-A Oklahoma City

Offensive standouts: Triple-A OKC is off to a 7-2 start, and it’s largely because of the contributions from a red-hot lineup. Jahmai Jones is right at the top of that list. A second-round pick by the Angels in 2015, he is 10-for-27 (.370) with three homers and seven RBIs through seven games.

Catcher Hunter Feduccia, who impressed the Dodgers this spring, has also had a good start to the season, hitting two homers. Luke Williams, who would likely be the first infielder called up in case of injury, leads the team with a .371 batting average.

Pitching standouts: The Dodgers signed Bryan Hudson as a Minor League free agent in December, and the right-hander is making quite the first impression with his new organization. The 6-foot-8 right-hander has punched out 10 in 5 1/3 scoreless innings out of the bullpen. He’s walked four, an area he needs to continue to work on, but a strong start nonetheless.

Left-hander Victor González has also built on a good spring. According to Triple-A OKC’s communications director Alex Freedman, González’s fastball velocity has been at 95-96 mph. If that continues, González could ultimately help a struggling Dodgers bullpen.

Top prospects report: Gavin Stone, the Dodgers’ No. 4 prospect per MLB Pipeline, got roughed up in his first start of the season, allowing six runs in 2 2/3 innings. His second start was better. The right-hander picked up his first win of the season, allowing one run and striking out five in five innings.

Double-A Tulsa

Offensive standouts: Jonny DeLuca was a surprise addition to the 40-man roster this offseason, but the outfielder continues to show his raw power. He smacked his first homer of the season for Double-A Tulsa. Yusniel Diaz, who signed as a Minor League free agent this offseason, is off to a 3-for-7 start at the plate with one homer.

Pitching standouts: The Double-A pitching has been terrific through three games. Emmet Sheehan, the No. 14 prospect in the system, struck out eight in five hitless innings in his season debut. Nick Frasso took the team’s only loss, but allowed just one run in four innings.

River Ryan continued to show why he’s one of the fastest-rising prospects in the system, allowing just one hit in four scoreless innings. Landon Knack faces a big season and he allowed two hits, while also delivering four shutout innings.

Top prospect report: Diego Cartaya, the top overall prospect in the organization, is starting the season in Double-A. He hasn’t been able to get going offensively yet, going 1-for-7 with three strikeouts. Of course, it’s only been two games for the young Venezuelan catcher.

High-A Great Lakes and Low-A Rancho Cucamonga

Offensive standouts: Not many standouts through three games in High-A outside of shortstop Alex Freeland, who went 2-for-5 with three walks in the opening series. In Low-A, Thayron Liranzo, Kyle Nevin and Dayton Dooney all finished the opening weekend with an OPS of over 1.000.

Pitching standouts: Maddux Bruns, the Dodgers’ first-round pick in the ‘21 Draft, got the Opening Day start for Rancho Cucamonga and punched out seven in four scoreless innings. Bruns walked two, an area that has been an issue for the 20-year-old.

Top prospect report: Dalton Rushing, the Dodgers’ top pick in the ‘22 Draft, entered the MLB Pipeline Top 100 ranking last weekend. He’s still looking for his first hit with High-A, going 0-for-4 in his first two games. Rushing, however, showed his advanced eye, drawing four walks.