Baseball America’s Top 20 Latin Summer League Prospects

The RAB Radio Show: March 17, 2011
Food For Thought: First League Average Season

I’m not one to spend much time researching Dominican Summer League and international prospects because the information on those guys is extremely unreliable (to put it nicely), so I just wait until they reach the states and go from there. Today, however, Baseball America’s Ben Badler put together a list of the 20 best prospects that played in Latin America last summer (subs. req’d), and two Yankees farmhands made the cut: Yeicok Calderon and Ravel Santana. It’s not a ranked list, Badler just listed the guys alphabetically.

Calderon, a 19-year-old Dominican outfielder, hit .339/.439/.551 with 16 doubles and eight homers in the DSL last year, leading the league in SLG while finishing third in OBP, fifth in AVG, and second in homers. “Calderon’s bat is advanced, he controls the strike zone well and he has above-average power,” said Badler. “His defense was crude after his first season in the DSL, but he made some progress last year with his routes and reads off the bat in right field. His bat, though, is what will have to carry him.” The 2008 international signee ($650,000 bonus) is expected to join the rookie level Gulf Coast League affiliate in 2010.

Santana, a Dominican outfielder like Calderon but a year younger, hit .332/.440/.533 with a league leading ten homers plus 22 steals. “He’s an advanced hitter for his age, has good plate discipline and shows above-average power,” adds Badler. “He has above-average speed and could play center or right field. Even with as much success as he had at the plate, Santana’s best tool is his plus-plus arm.” Santana signed for just $145,000 in 2009, and could debut in the U.S. this summer.

The RAB Radio Show: March 17, 2011
Food For Thought: First League Average Season
  • Carlosologist

    If these guys are for real, they could surge through the system rather quickly and give us good depth in the field.

    But that’s only a hypothetical, I’d rather wait until they debut in the states.

  • Gonzo

    I don’t know how these DSL prospects get to the US, but is 19 considered young, old, or right on target for one to get to the US?

    • Mike Axisa

      Right on target, maybe even a little young.

      • Gonzo

        Sweet, so this is good news indeed!

        Thanks for the heads up. With Depaula, these guys, and the ’10 draft guys, it’s going to be an interesting DoTF this year!

        • Tom Zig

          DePaula has to get a visa first.

          Don’t forget that other guy too. The guy we kinda stole

          • Rick in Boston

            What’s the issue with DePaula’ visa? Is there a hang-up? I know teams have a limited number of visas available, so is DePaula just caught up in a numbers crunch?

        • Steve H

          If DePaula ever gets a visa.

          • Steve H

            Damn refresh fail.

          • Zack

            I probably missed something on this but why is it “if ever”? Referring to if he actually applies for one or if he is ever approved for one?

            • Steve H

              Don’t know the full story, but apparently there are some serious issues. I believe Aranguere tweeted about it, don’t know if there is more out there on it.

            • Steve H

              From Arangure:

              “For Yanks fans: If Rafael DePaula ever gets a visa — and that’s a big if — he’ll head to extended spring.People here raving about him. ”

              “he lied about his age and got caught. the consulate doesn’t look kindly upon fraud.”

              In response to @TomZig asking “ahhh I seee. Do you think he’ll get one? ”

              “impossible to predict. not even the yankees know”

  • Avi

    Santana sounds interesting. Gotta give credit to Andy in sunny Daytona for him. I hadn’t heard of Santana till Andy was teasing everyone about him. I think it was when Mike came out with his top 30 prospects. Another guy I’d love to know more about is 17 year old Rafael Polo. He batted .323 with 27 extra base hits in the DSL last summer.

  • hogan

    Does anyone have Baseball America’s Top 20 Impact Rookies 2011 list they released this year?