2012 Draft Report Cards: Los Angeles Dodgers




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See also: Draft Report Card Index
POSITION PLAYERS


QUICK TAKE
Freed from previous financial limitations, the Dodgers spent more than they ever had before. Seager was one of the best bats available, and Rodriguez and Garcia should help the big league pitching staff in a hurry.
Bonus Spending: $6.3 million
Best Pure Hitter: SS Corey Seager's (1) simple lefthanded swing and all-fields approach helped him bat .309 as one of the youngest regulars in the Rookie-level Pioneer League. Best Power Hitter: Once he gets stronger, Seager could have power to match his hitting ability and the Dodgers think he'll produce 25 homers annually in the majors. 1B Justin Chigbogu (4) and OF Joey Curletta (6) have huge power potential but are very raw. Fastest Runner: SS Darnell Sweeney (13) is the lone plus runner and stole 27 bases in 67 pro games. Best Defensive Player: SS Jesmuel Valentin (1s) played second base alongside No. 1 overall pick Carlos Correa in Puerto Rico, but he has all the tools for shortstop, starting with outstanding hands and a strong arm. Sweeney and Seager are also good defenders, though Seager may eventually move to third base.

PITCHERS

Best Fastball: LHP Onelki Garcia (3) hit 97 mph in the Double-A Southern League playoffs and usually pitches at 91-94. Los Angeles has seen RHP Scott Griggs (8) up to 98, RHPs Zach Bird (9) and Jharel Cotton (20) up to 96 and RHP Matthew Reckling (14) up to 95. Best Secondary Pitch: Garcia's power curveball is even tougher to hit than his fastball. LHP Paco Rodriguez's (2) high-80s cutter is nearly as filthy.

ODDS AND ENDS

Best Pro Debut: Rodriguez posted a 0.92 ERA and struck out 32 in 20 minor league innings, then allowed just one run in 11 big league outings. 1B Paul Hoenecke (24) won the Arizona League batting title at .382, though he was old for Rookie ball at 21. Pioneer League all-star OF Jeremy Rathjen (11) hit .324/.443/.500 with a league-high 67 runs. Best Athlete: OF Jacob Scavuzzo (21) requires polish, but he has strength, solid speed and a quick bat. Chigbogu was an all-state defensive end at his Missouri high school. Most Intriguing Background: RHP Jordan Hershiser's (34) father Orel won a Cy Young Award and made three all-star teams for the Dodgers. Four other draftees have big league connections: Seager (brother Kyle), Valentin (father Jose), 2B Zach Babitt (10, father Shooty) and unsigned 3B Jose Vizcaino (34, father Jose, who's a special adviser for the club). RHP Duke von Schamann's (15) dad Uwe was an NFL kicker. Reckling played at Rice, where the baseball stadium is named after his grandparents, its lead donors. Closest To The Majors: Rodriguez was the first 2012 draftee to reach the majors. Garcia could be the second; the Dodgers considered him with their 2011 first-round pick before MLB pulled him out of that draft at the last minute. Best Late-Round Pick: Cotton, who dropped in the draft after a stress fracture in his elbow hampered him in the spring at East Carolina. The One Who Got Away: RHP David Graybill (31) is a two-way player with power potential and a 90-93 mph fastball. He opted to attend Arizona State.