Catcher Diego Cartaya, the Dodgers’ top prospect, got the call to High-A on Tuesday, still more than three months shy of his 21st birthday.
Cartaya this season hit .260/.405/.550 with nine home runs and nine doubles for Low-A Rancho Cucamonga. It was a return trip to Low-A for Cartaya, who saw his 2021 season curtailed by injuries. In 64 games for the Quakes, Cartaya hit .278/.407/.580 with 19 home runs, 15 doubles, 62 RBI, and 62 runs scored.
The LA Dodgers No. 1 prospect Diego Cartaya hits his second career grand slam home run in tonight’s fourth inning. This is his second homer of the season and the first debut here at LoanMart Field.— Rancho Cucamonga Quakes (@RCQuakes) April 13, 2022
: (Via/sabrina.reyes) pic.twitter.com/4YYqNKQ0yG
He had a double, home run, and triple in his last three games for the Quakes before getting promoted.
Before the season, Cartaya was a consensus top-100 prospect in MLB, with an average rank of 30th across Baseball America, Baseball Prospectus, ESPN, The Athletic, FanGraphs, and MLB Pipeline. Eric Longenhagen at FanGraphs on May 6 wrote that Cartaya “is very gifted in all facets of baseball and has an All-Star ceiling.”
Here’s an interesting note from Great Lakes broadcaster Brad Tunney:
Hard to believe…— Brad Tunney (@brad_tunney) May 31, 2022
Cartaya is the first No. 1 #Dodgers prospect to to play in Great Lakes while holding the No. 1 spot (BA, MLB).
Kershaw (‘07) wasn’t 1 until ‘08
Strange-Gordon (‘09) wasn’t until ‘10
Seager (‘13) wasn’t until ‘14@greatlakesloons
With Rancho Cucamonga this season, Cartaya caught 23 games and was designated hitter in 10 games, to keep his bat in the lineup.
Cartaya, signed by the Dodgers out of Venezuela as an international amateur free agent in 2018, joins a Great Lakes lineup with a pair of 21-year-olds in Eddys Leonard and Jorbit Vivas, both of whom are on the 40-man roster.
Great Lakes hosts the Fort Wayne TinCaps, a Padres affiliate, for a six-game series beginning Tuesday night. If Cartaya is behind the plate for the Loons, his first High-A catching assignment will be right-hander Kyle Hurt, who has a 1.74 ERA and 38.6-percent strikeout rate in 20⅔ innings for Great Lakes this season.