Dodgers honor Walker Buehler and Keibert Ruiz
Per the Dodger Press Release:
DODGERS NAME WALKER BUEHLER, KEIBERT RUIZ AS THE BRANCH RICKEY MINOR LEAGUE PITCHER/PLAYER OF THE YEAR
LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles Dodgers today named right-handed pitcher Walker Buehler as the Branch Rickey Minor League Pitcher of the Year and catcher Keibert Ruiz as the Branch Rickey Minor League Player of the Year.
In 24 combined appearances (19 starts) this season with Single-A Rancho Cucamonga, Double-A Tulsa and Triple-A Oklahoma City, Buehler has a 3-3 record with a 3.36 ERA (31 ER/ 83 IP) and one save, striking out a combined 117 batters against just 29 walks. Buehler started his season dominating the California League, posting a 1.10 ERA (2 ER/16.1 IP) in five starts, before his promotion to Tulsa on May 10.
Buehler then made 11 starts for the Drillers, going 2-2 with a 3.49 ERA (19 ER/49.0 IP), a 1.12 WHIP and a .225 opponent’s batting average. He was named Texas League Pitcher of the Week after his start on June 30, in which he fired 5.1 scoreless innings while allowing just two hits and striking out seven against only one walk. Buehler was promoted to Oklahoma City on July 16 and made three starts – including his first Triple-A victory on July 31 (5.0 IP, 0 R, 3 H, 6 K) – before being moved to a relief role in August. Since moving to the ‘pen, Buehler has struck out 11 batters in 7.2 innings. Overall, he has limited the opposition to a .224 average with the OKC Dodgers.
The Dodgers originally selected the Lexington, Kentucky native with the 24th overall in the 2015 First-Year Player Draft.
Ruiz, who turned 19 on July 20, was signed out of Venezuela in July 2014 and after a stellar 2016 campaign for Rookie-level Ogden, combined to hit .329 with 56 runs, 22 doubles, two triples, eight home runs, and 49 RBI in 92 games for Single-A Great Lakes and Single-A Rancho Cucamonga this season.
Ruiz began 2017 by slashing .317/372/.423 in 63 games for Single-A Great Lakes and was promoted to Single-A Rancho Cucamonga on July 9. With the Quakes, Ruiz is batting .353 (41-for-116) with six homers, six doubles, 25 RBI and 22 runs scored in 29 games. In 192 career minor-league games, the switch-hitting catcher has slashed .337 /.379/.473 with 11 homers, 52 doubles and 116 RBI.
Buehler and Ruiz will both be presented their respective awards and honored in a pregame ceremony at Dodger Stadium on Sept. 23 vs. San Francisco.
Branch Rickey Minor League Player and Pitcher of the Year: 1989-2017
|Year||Player of the Year||POS||League||Pitcher of the Year||League|
|1989||Mike Huff||OF||AAA||Jim Poole||A|
|1990||Henry Rodriguez||OF||AA||Jamie McAndrew||A+/AA|
|1991||Eric Karros||1st||AAA||Pedro Martinez||AA/AAA|
|1992||Mike Piazza||C||AA/AAA||Todd Williams||A+/AA|
|1993||Billy Ashley||OF||AAA||Kip Gross||AAA|
|1994||Billy Ashley||OF||AAA||Greg Hansell||AAA|
|1995||Adam Riggs||Infielder||A+||Gary Rath||AA/AAA|
|1996||Paul Konerko||Infielder||AA/AAA||Billy Neal||A|
|1997||Paul Konerko||Infielder||AAA||Dennys Reyes||AA/AAA|
|1998||Angel Peña||C||AA||Luke Prokopec||A+/AA|
|1999||Chin-Feng Chen||OF||A+||Eric Gagné||AA|
|2000||Joe Thurston||2B||A+||Carlos Garcia||A+|
|2001||Phil Hiatt||Infielder||AAA||Ricardo Rodriguez||A|
|2002||Joe Thurston||2B||AAA||Edwin Jackson|
|2003||Franklin Gutierrez||OF||A+/AA||Greg Miller||A+/AA|
|2004||Joel Guzman||SS||A+/AA||Chad Billingsley||A+/AA|
|2005||Andy LaRoche||3B||A+/AA||Chad Billingsley||AA|
|2006||James Loney||1B||AAA||Mark Alexander||AA/AAA|
|2007||Chin-lung Hu||SS||AA/AAA||James McDonald||A+/AA|
|2008||Ivan De Jesus||SS||AA||James McDonald||AA|
|2009||Dee Gordon||SS||A||Scott Elbert||AA/AAA|
|2010||Jerry Sands||OF||A/AA||Rubby De La Rosa||A/AA|
|2011||Scott Van Slyke||OF||AA||Shawn Tolleson||A/AA|
|2012||Joc Pederson||OF||A+||John Ely||AAA|
|2013||Scott Schebler||OF||A+||Zach Lee||AA|
|2014||Joc Pederson||OF||AAA||Julio Urias||A+|
|2015||Alex Verdugo||OF||A/A+||Zach Lee||AAA|
|2016||Edwin Rios||3B||A/A+/AA||Brock Stewart||A+/AA/AAA|
|2017||Keibert Ruiz||C||A/A+||Walker Buehler||A+/AA/AAA|
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