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Baseball America top Dodgers prospects headed by Diego Cartaya, Bobby Miller, Miguel Vargas

Six returnees from last year’s BA top-10 list

Cincinnati Reds v Los Angeles Dodgers
Bobby Miller was drafted by the Dodgers in the first round in 2020 out of Louisville.
Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images

Baseball America unveiled their top-10 Dodgers prospect list on Friday, and a trio of players stood out from the rest. Catcher Diego Cartaya leads the way as the top prospect in the organization, followed by pitcher Bobby Miller and third baseman Miguel Vargas.

Cartaya, who just turned 20 in September, made his stateside debut in 2021 by blasting 10 home runs in 31 games for Low-A Rancho Cucamonga, hitting .298/.409/.614 for the Quakes before missing the final two-plus months due to hamstring and back injuries.

“Though only 20 years old, Cartaya is a big, physical masher who is a force at the plate,” says Baseball America’s scouting report. “He is an extraordinarily mature hitter who expertly manages the strike zone, recognizes pitches out of the hand and makes ear-ringing contact with controlled, powerful swings.”

Last year, Baseball America rated Cartaya as the sixth-best prospect in the system, a list that was topped by another Venezuelan catcher, Keibert Ruiz, who was traded to the Nationals in July.

BA gave Cartaya an overall 65 grade on the 20-80 scouting scale, while Miller and Vargas both were 60s.

Miller excelled in his first professional season of actual games in 2021, posting a 2.40 ERA with 70 strikeouts (with a 30.4-percent strikeout rate) against only 13 walks in 56⅓ innings in 17 games, including 14 starts across High-A Great Lakes and Double-A Tulsa.

The Dodgers picked Miller out of Louisville in the first round of the 2020 MLB Draft, and after some time at the alternate training site at USC that year, he was rated as the fifth-best prospect in the system by Baseball America.

The Dodgers named Vargas the Branch Rickey Award winner as minor league player of the year on the hitting side, after excellent performances at both High-A Great Lakes (142 wRC+) and Double-A Tulsa (141 wRC+). Vargas set a Loons record with a 26-game hitting streak, and across both levels hit .319/.380/.526 with 23 home runs and 27 doubles, while playing double-digit games at second base and first base in addition to his regular duties at third base.

Vargas, who turned 22 in November, was rated ninth in the system last year by BA.

This year’s Baseball America top-10 Dodgers list includes six players who were also in last year’s top 10. In addition to the top three mentioned above, Michael Busch, Ryan Pepiot, and Andy Pages make return engagements this year.

Also of note, utility man Eddys Leonard, who was added to the 40-man roster in November, is the No. 8 prospect in the system. Shortstop Jacob Amaya, another 40-man newcomer, was rated by BA as having the best strike-zone discipline in the system and also as the Dodgers best defensive minor league infielder. Outfielder James Outman was tabbed by BA as the best athlete in the system.

Baseball America picked Miller as having the best fastball in the system, while naming Vargas the best hitter for average, with Pages as the top power hitter.

Baseball America 2022 top Dodgers prospects

  1. Diego Cartaya C
  2. Bobby Miller RHP
  3. Miguel Vargas 3B
  4. Michael Busch 2B
  5. Ryan Pepiot RHP
  6. Andy Pages OF
  7. Landon Knack RHP
  8. Eddys Leonard 2B/SS/OF
  9. Andre Jackson RHP
  10. Wilman Diaz SS