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.