What to expect from Andy Pages

April 17th, 2024

Teams never can have too much power. The Dodgers entered Tuesday with more home runs (25 in 19 games) than any other big league team, then added more pop by calling up one of the most accomplished sluggers in the Minor Leagues.

Though Los Angeles hasn't had any difficulty scoring runs, three outfield regulars (Enrique Hernández, James Outman, Chris Taylor) are off to slow starts and a fourth (Jason Heyward) is on the injured list with lower back tightness. Enter , who's ranked No. 94 on MLB Pipeline's Top 100 Prospects list and was raking at a .371/.452/.694 clip with five homers in 15 games at Triple-A Oklahoma City at the time of his callup.

A Cuba native who signed for $300,000 in 2017, Pages stands out most with his plus-plus raw power. His combination of bat speed, strength and the leverage and loft in his right-handed stroke enables him to drive the ball out of any part of the ballpark. Add in an mindset that focuses on launching balls in the air to his pull side, and he has crushed Minor League pitching throughout his pro career.

Pages led his respective leagues in extra-base hits his first two full years in the United States and is a career .262/.381/.527 hitter with 94 homers in 416 games as a pro. Although he will pile up strikeouts while providing prodigious power, he's more than just a grip-it-and-rip-it masher.

Dodgers officials laud the 23-year-old as one of the most intelligent hitters in the system. He understands his swing, shows the ability to make adjustments and draws his share of walks.

After Double-A pitchers exploited his aggressive, pull-happy approach in 2022, resulting in a .236/.336/.468 line, Pages spent that offseason working on improving his athleticism and patience. He was much more disciplined and performed better when he returned to Double-A last year, only to require season-ending surgery after tearing the labrum in his left (non-throwing) shoulder during his Triple-A debut in mid-May.

If not for that injury, Pages might have arrived in Los Angeles at some point in 2023. But if the Mookie Betts trade hadn't taken so long to finalize in 2020, he might never have played for the Dodgers at all.

As an offshoot of the Betts deal, the Dodgers and Angels agreed to exchange Pages along with Joc Pederson and Ross Stripling for Luis Rengifo and Taylor Ward. The Red Sox didn't like the medical reports on Brusdar Graterol, whom they would have received from the Twins in the original three-team Betts trade, forcing further negotiations in what became a two-team move with Los Angeles. The Angels reportedly tired of waiting for Betts to become a Dodger and ended talks of the swap.

Ultimately, Pages didn't change organizations four years ago and now becomes part of a team seeking its 12th consecutive playoff berth. He broke into the Majors by playing center field and batting seventh against the Nationals and Patrick Corbin on Tuesday night.

Pages has fringy-to-average speed but plays quicker than that on the bases and in the outfield thanks to his advanced instincts. He makes good reads and covers ground in center, though he projects more as a long-term right fielder. He fits the classic profile in right with his double-plus power and arm strength to match.

If fellow right-handed-hitting options continue to scuffle, Pages could tap into their allotment of at-bats. He impressed players and the coaching staff with his strong play during Spring Training and could deliver 20 homers as a rookie if he gets regular playing time.