Born on February 1, 1992 in Miramar, Florida. Selected in the 13th round of the 2012 draft. Listed at 6'1 and 150 pounds.
Began his career with Ogden, batting .303 in 16 games with 10 steals. Promoted to Great Lakes where he hit .291 with 8 doubles, 4 triples, 5 home runs and 17 stolen bases in 21 attempts.
When I first saw Darnell playing for the Loons, I thought I was flashing back to 2009 when Dee Gordon was with the team. He's like Dee Gordon's Mini-Me. A Mini-Dee, if you will.
The body is only the beginning of the comp, though, as Sweeney showed off very good speed in his first 67 games as a pro, stealing 27 of 33 bases. It also allows him to cover ground at short, where he displays good hands and a strong arm.
At the plate, Sweeney hit surprisingly well in his first taste of full season ball, especially in such an unfriendly environment as Great Lakes. He homered 5 times in 51 games and posted a .372 OBP thanks in part to a 10% walk rate. While he doesn't profile as a power hitter in the pros, he'll need to continue to walk in order to prove he's worthy of the top of the order.
Low/Medium. 67 games in the low minors doesn't really show much in the long run. He under-performed in college, which is why he fell to the 13th round. However, the tools are there and, though the chances are slim, he could end up manning short in the show someday.
With Corey Seager and Jesmuel Valentin at shortstop and a few years younger, Darnell could be pushed aggressively. There shouldn't be anyone blocking him at Rancho, which is where I expect him to begin the 2013 season. If he succeeds, a midseason callup could be in the cards.
Dodgers Prospect Countdown#17 Darnell Sweeney
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