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2012 State of the Dodgers Minor League System - 2nd Base

Ivan  De Jesus during his time in LA
Ivan De Jesus during his time in LA

Here is part 3 of my State of the Minor League System, and this time we'll take a look at 2nd base. In case you missed it, here was a look at the Dodgers minor league catchers, and here is 1st basemen. As a reminder, I am providing the overall preseason rank that I gave to each player (Pre Overall) and of course their current ranking within the position. You'll notice that some players have an N/A next to their preseason rank. That is because the player is new to the Dodgers or new to the position since my preseason ranking. Like my pre-season rankings, I will only include guys who are under 28 years of age and are considered prospects (less than 130 AB's).

I am including all players that are in the Dodgers minor league system except for the recent international signees who have not yet played in a professional game because there simply isn't any information about them out there. I will also be providing how each player was acquired, their age, height, weight, and current level.

As I mentioned before, I have ranked each player at is the position that I believe is best long term position for the player. It may not be the players current primary position, but it is where I believe each player will ultimately end up should they make the major leagues. Here is the list:

Current Name Pre Overall How Acquired Age Height Weight Bats Level
1 Ivan De Jesus 31 2005, 2nd 25.26 5' 11" 200 R AAA
2 Malcolm Holland 96 2011, 33rd 20.13 5' 11" 165 R Ogden
3 Scott Wingo 92 2011, 11th 23.36 5' 11" 175 L HiA
4 Rafael Ynoa 110 Signed 7/8/05 25.00 6' 0" 180 R AA
5 Jesus Arredondo New Signed 2011 (Mexico) 21.46 5' 10" 180 L LoA
6 Kevin Taylor 137 2011, 36th 21.07 6' 0" 200 L LoA
7 Pedro Guerrero 135 Signed 7/10/06 23.67 6' 3" 185 R LoA
8 Joseph Becker 150 Signed 1/11/07 26.74 5' 10" 184 R AAA
9 Zachary Babitt New 2012, 10th 22.93 5' 7" 160 L Arizona
10 Melvin Santana 177 Signed 5/7/10 20.84 5' 10" 160 R DSL
11 Luis Nunez New Signed 2012 25.71 5' 11" 160 R AA
12 Faustino Oguisten 153 Signed 1/19/09 21.55 6' 2" 165 R ???
13 Vladimir Martinez 185 Signed 3/30/10 20.11 6' 2" 173 S DSL
14 Stefan Jarrin 190 2011, 40th 21.94 5' 10" 170 R Arizona
15 David Iden 193 2009, 35th 25.42 5' 9" 160 R ???

See the analysis after the jump...

For reference sake, here is the 2011 version of the 2nd base prospect ranking. The first thing you'll probably notice about the list above is that it is missing Alex Castellanos, who has played a lot of 2nd base this year down at AAA. To that I say that I just don't think 2nd base is his best position nor do I believe it will be where he plays in the big leagues, so I've put him with the outfield. Elian Herrera is another guy who has been excluded because he has actually already reached the 130 big league at bat threshold. Without Castle and Herrera this list is pretty bleak as it doesn't really offer any players with much upside.

Ivan De Jesus leads the 2nd base pack for the second year in a row even though he's been pretty terrible in AAA this year (other than his big game last night). Now 25 years old, it doesn't seem that De Jesus really fits into the Dodgers long term plans and to be honest I don't think he has the talent to be any more than a light hitting utility player whose glove doesn't play at shortstop even part time.

Malcolm Holland might be a surprise on the list at #2, but now that he's fully focused on baseball he has shown some intriguing speed and a knack for getting on base. He's still extremely raw, which is evidenced by his poor defense, but he's stolen almost a base a game (22 SB's) and his OB% is over .400 even though his batting average is at .245. That's thanks to the fact that he's walked in over 20% of his plate appearances this year. He doesn't have any power to speak of and he'll probably get exposed at high levels, but for now he at least offers some excitement to the position.

I have Scott Wingo next on the list and even though I don't think he has the tools to do it, I just somehow have this feeling that he'll eventually make it into the big leagues. By all accounts he's a gritty player who loves the game, and the one thing he does have going for him is that he does have a very good idea of the strike zone as he walks almost as much as he strikes out. He has some speed, but his power is limited and if he does somehow make it to the show it would be in a backup role.

To mention a few other players, Rafael Ynoa is a good defender and also has a strong ability to get on base, but his power numbers have disappeared this year and he doesn't really have much upside. Jesus Arredondo started the year on fire but has quickly faded, and 2012 10th round pick Zachary Babit was simply a strategic over-draft so I really don't see him as much of a prospect. Finally, Melvin Santana is one of the best hitters on the Dominican Dodgers this year but he's already almost 21 years old so probably won't ever amount to anything.

Overall 2nd base is another weak minor league position for the Dodgers, but the good news is that Mark Ellis is around for another year so the Dodgers have some time before they need to find a new middle infielder. In addition, there is always the possibility that one of the shortstop prospects (post coming up tomorrow) could move over and fill the hole at 2nd.