Two Cubans take the FFA for week of June 12th
Multiple Dodger prospects had huge hitting performances for the week ending on June 18th. It was a tough call who to pick for the weekly FFA award and ultimately I had to split the award between our Cuban positional prospects Yusniel Diaz and Jose Fernandez. Both Cubans have gotten red hot in June and amassed multiple hit games last week. They come from different places. Diaz is the young big bonus baby and coming into this year was expected to establish himself as a Dodger outfielder for the future. Jose Fernandez was signed for the minimum and at best was expected to provide some infield depth.
Through the end of May, neither was doing much but June came and they have woken up.
Just a few weeks ago I was discussing Yusniel Diaz as one of the most disappointing top prospects in the Dodger system, and right on cue, Diaz exploded in June and more so in the past week. Diaz had fourteen hits in just seven games. He had two hits in two games, three hits in two games, and four hits in one game. With his four walks, he got on base eighteen times in twenty-nine at-bats. So far in June Diaz has a triple stat line of .412 / .459 / 1.107 with three home runs. For the season, Diaz has a massive home/road split with a home OPS of .924 compared to a road split of .567. Nice to see the 20-year-old starting to put up some numbers worthy of the Dodger bonus.
Jose Fernandez has also gotten as hot as the West Valley sun. Fernandez also hit in every game last week, picking up fourteen hits. Four times he had two hits, and three hits one time. That is blazing hot, and for June his triple stat line now reads .453 / .532 / 1.136. He’s still 29 years old in AA but at least he’s making noise, and maybe it was just a rust issue after all and that there is some prime iron ready to shine once polished.
Part of the competition for the week came from my number one prospect Keibert Ruiz who hit in every game he played in last week. He might have knocked off Diaz if not for the fact Ruiz only played in four games. The eighteen-year-old isn’t showing much power but at eighteen he has plenty of time for that part of his game to show up. Over his last ten games, he is twelve for thirty with seven walks. Good for a .400 BA, and staggering .514 OBP.
Alex Verdugo also had a great week and now that I look at his numbers maybe I should have given the nod to Alex. Verdugo also hit in every game last week, tallying twelve hits, two home runs, and four walks. Verdugo is now hitting .487 over his last ten games and has a June triple stat line in June of .369 / . 438 / .615. The just turned 21-year-old is doing great things at AAA. Might not be long before he’s playing LF in some capacity for the Dodgers.
On the pitching side:
A. J. Alexy pitched his best game as a pro on June 13th. The Great Lakes Loon nineteen-year-old got eighteen outs for the first time in his career and did it without allowing a run. He struck out six and walked two.
Wilmer Font continues to amaze with another solid performance on June 14th in AAA. Font went six scoreless innings, giving up just three hits, walking one, and striking out seven. In his last three starts, Font has gone six innings each time, given up just one run combined, 10 hits, and a crazy twenty-four strikeouts with just two walks.
Walker Buehler was solid on June 15th in a start for AA Tulsa. Walker went five innings, gave up five hits, two earned runs, walked one, and struck out six.
Of the big three of Alvarez / Buehler / White, only Walker gets a mention with White on the DL and Yadier not pitching any better than Dennis Santana.
Speaking of Dennis Santana, the 21-year-old converted shortstop to relief to starting pitcher went seven innings for the first time in his professional career. Santana was almost brilliant, allowing only three hits, one earned run, two walks, and eight strikeouts. This was great to see as Santana had struggled in his two prior June appearances.