Keibert Ruiz is my Prospect of the Month
As spring has turned to summer the 18-year-old Ruiz has gotten as hot as the weather. Ruiz ended June with a triple stat line of .339 / .435 / .492 which according to my meager math gives him an OPS of .926. Using the table below you can see his progression.
Even though May and June had just about the same batting average, the on-base percentage jumped significantly in June, due to the growing patience of Ruiz. In April/May combined Ruiz struck out 23 times with only seven walks. In June, he improved to ten walks with only four strikeouts.
This from an 18-year-old in an advanced pitchers league. You don’t usually see that kind of improvement.
So what we have here is an 18-year-old switch-hitting catcher, showing improvement across the board as the season is wearing on. His defensive prowess was supposed to be his calling card but someone forgot to tell his bat.
All this is why Keibert Ruiz my Dodger prospect of the month for June. Alex Verdugo had a higher OPS in June at 1.036 and he was a close second. A very close second. At just 21 years old in AAA, Verdugo is showing the Dodgers he’s ready for a possible 2017 major league debut. I can’t wait to see his arm. I guess they aren’t running on him as much as word gets around. With 24 assists in 2015, 13 in 2016 and 7 so far in 2017 that is a boatload of assists.
— OKC Dodgers (@okc_dodgers) June 26, 2017
One final note. MLB has Vlad Guerrero Junior as the 26th best prospect in baseball. Rotowire has him 3rd. Baseball America has him 16th. Guerrero and Ruiz are both 18, both play in the same league. Overall Guerrero is outhitting Ruiz by a significant margin, but in June, it was Ruiz who had the upper hand by a significant margin.
There are only five other 18-year-old position players in the MWL who have enough plate appearances to appear in offensive leaderboards. Ruiz is 3rd in OPS but 2nd in OBP among that group. He’s just a tad behind Tatis Junior for 2nd in OPS.