Dodger Prospect #7 - 3B Pedro Baez

The Dodgers have long depended on a pipeline of talented players that arrived each year from the Dominican Republic. Pedro and Ramon Martinez, Raul Mondesi, Henry Rodriguez and later Adrian Beltré, Tony Abreu, Ramon Troncoso, Mariano Duncan ... the names goes on and on. And soon the name of Pedro Baez will be added to the list.

6-2 195 BR TR
Born- March 11, 1988 in Bani, Dominican Republic
Obtained- Signed as a free agent 2007

One of the more promising Dominican newbies includes third baseman Juan Alberys Baez, who later became become Pedro Baez. At age 19, he had the look of someone who could well become special. He's a solid 6-1, 190, and shows range, a glorious arm, a quick bat and soft hands.

The youngster made strong plays at the hot corner consistently and skipped the Dominican Summer League completely. The ball rockets off his bat when he hits and although he tailed off some as his first season stretched out he drove in 39 runs (2nd in the league) while hitting .274. He excelled with men on base. He has the talent to do it all except for swiftness for he's a heavy-legged runner and has to watch his weight.

Longtime Dominican instructors favorably compared him to Adrian Beltré when he was just beginning and that's high praise, indeed. Logan White first worked him out in the U.S, stashed him away, then took him back to the Dominican where he was signed.

He finished the season with a .408 slugging average (8th among Dodger short season teams), scored 35 runs (seventh), was third in doubles (14) and second in RBI (40).

In 2008, he opened a league too far, hitting just .178 at Great Lakes but when slipped back to Ogden, he clubbed 33 extra base hits in 61 games, including 12 home runs, and knocked in 50 runs.

And despite missing over half the season, he slugged a dozen home runs and knocked in 50 runs to top the Short-Season charts. He was among the top 10 in slugging (.502), runs (37), hits (66), doubles (20) and OPS (on-base plus slugging - .819).

Analysts, say of Baez: "Maturely built youngster with bat speed and strong wrists that make him capable of plus power. Lacks pitch recognition, not rare in young hitters, so his average may fluctuate in lower minors. Possesses plus arm strength and soft hands in providing above average defense."

For a big kid, Baez is well coordinated and composed. He has a quick first step which leads to surprisingly decent range. Pedro's most obvious defensive tool is his outstanding arm strength, rated first in the Dodgers system by Baseball America.?

?If the stars align as expected, Baez will easily become a major league regular at third, and has the talent to make All-Star teams. His ceiling is very high, but it's still very early in his development.?

?The Dodgers tried to push him to A- ball in 2008, but given how raw he is, he will probably play in Ogden in 2008 but could be sent to Great Lakes again.

His record:

Pedro Baez

year  team    ave   obp  ops   gm   ab   r   h  2b 3b hr  bi  sb
2007  GCLg   .274  .341  .731  53  201  35  55  14  2  3  39   3
2008 GLakes  .178  .244  .503  59  185  23  33  10  1  1  16   3 
     Ogden   .267  .317  .819  61  247  37  66  20  1 12  50   2
  Totals    .243  .303  .704  173  633  95 154  44  4 16 105   8        

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