An outfielder over his first two seasons, the Devil Rays have moved Sergio Pedroza behind the plate.
A 2005 third-round pick of the Dodgers out of Cal State Fullerton, Pedroza came over to the Rays last July in the Julio Lugo trade. While he has a live bat–Pedroza batted .313/.447/.545 at high Class A Visalia after the trade last season–he’s a below-average runner and is no better than an adequate defender on either corner outfield spot.
Besides his bat, Pedroza’s arm is his best tool. Hence the move behind the plate, where the Rays think he could have a bright future and have already been impressed with his receiving skills.
“He profiles for the position,” Rays farm director Mitch Lukevics said. “His arm is a great asset and will play behind the plate. The ball comes to him. The power also profiles.”
Pedroza has caught only twice at high Class A Vero Beach, familiar ground for the former Dodger farmhand. He’s served as the club’s designated hitter the majority of the time so far this season and is hitting just .071 in 14 at-bats.
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