Dynasty Performance Report: Minor League Catchers/Corner Infielders 2.0

Assessing the dynasty value of Minor League corner infielders/catchers

Following the first update of the MLB corner infield and catchers, it’s time to tap into some MiLB options. Once again, age & level of competition play a huge part is risers and fallers. Some prospects that fall, don’t mean they shouldn’t be owned. Similar to that, risers aren’t automatically top 10 prospects. Check out some of these prospects that may have had a slow start and are getting back to top dynasty grabs.

Be sure to head over to the Pitcher List dynasty page to check out other helpful articles such as the dynasty performance report for outfielders!


Dynasty Risers:


Harry Ford, C, SEA


One of the more underrated prospects in baseball, Ford has been promoted at a conservative rate. Never playing in two different levels in the same year, Ford has played at Rookie ball, Low-A, High-A, and now Double-A. 2024 has been much of the same for Ford as he continues to walk at a plus rate. Showing off his above-average power and speed, Ford is working towards his first 20-20 season. Ford has stolen more than 20 bases in his last two seasons and increased from 11 to 15 home runs. Steady improvement from Ford has been what keeps him ranked as a top-75 prospect.

21 years old for all of 2024, Ford is producing at the Double-A level. A .274/.420/.489 slash line, with 5 home runs and 9 steals, Ford is trending towards a top dynasty catcher. Ford might not have the hit tool of JT Realmuto but the advanced walk rate could produce higher OBP numbers. The power and speed immediately move Ford to the top of catching prospects. Ford is my clear number-two catching prospect behind Samuel Basallo. The ability to hit at the top of the order with his patience and offers high run potential. Trending in the right direction at a rapid pace, Ford has a .350 OBP profile with 20-20 potential.


Kyle Teel, C, BOS


The 14th overall pick in the 2023 MLB draft, Teel is a bat-first catcher. This has been on display since he made his Red Sox organization debut. Teel hit .363 in his 2023 season with Boston and has picked up 2024 with a .282 average at Double-A. A top, or middle of the order bat, Teel can make consistent contact. The power and speed aren’t over the top but could be around 15 each per year. Teel has a very good opportunity to make a late-season push as the everyday catcher in Boston.

Double-A was a bit of a slow start for Teel, but he’s heating up as of late. With only 33 strikeouts in his 117 at-bats, Teel puts the bat on the ball. 19 walks, 3 home runs, and 1 steal make Teel a contributor across the categories. There is no doubt the average is going to be what carries him. Teel has a swing that doesn’t always lift the ball over the fence but 15-20 a year is in play. Teel is highly ranked for his ability to hit and defense but the overall yearly numbers should give him a bit more buzz.


Honorable Mention


Bryce Eldridge, 1B, SFG:


One of the more intriguing 2023 FYPD picks, Eldridge was a legit 2-way prospect. The Giants have since moved Eldridge to a full-time first baseman. Like most top-tier corner infielders, plus raw power is the calling card. Standing 6’7, and weighing 225 pounds, Eldridge has 30+ home run potential. 5 home runs in his first 25 games at Low-A in 2024, Eldridge has no doubt power. The strikeout rate and average are something to monitor, but the talent is there. My personal 3rd overall first base prospect, Eldridge is just behind Manzardo and Xavier Isaac. Eldridge has the raw tools, it’s just a matter of if he can put it all together.


Deyvison De Los Santos, ARI:


Maybe the hottest-hitting prospect in baseball, Deyvison has been raking. Newly promoted to Triple-A, Arizona is continuing to be aggressive the the 20 year-old corner infielder. After an eventful off-season of being selected in the Rule 5 draft by Cleveland, De Los Santos is back with the Diamondbacks. A .372/.426/.696 slash earned him a promotion one month before his 21st birthday. De Los Santos showcased his raw power, adding 14 home runs in 38 games. No doubt his best tool is power, but the .372 average is exactly what Deyvison was missing. His strikeout rate dropped from his 26% rate in 2023 to 22.2% in 2024. Triple-A is an aggressive test for Deyvison, but that is on brand for his career to date.


Dynasty Fallers:


Ethan Salas, C, SDP:


Aggressively promoted from the start of his professional career, Salas has had his ups and downs. Still days away from his 18th birthday, Salas saw Double-A in 2023 and High-A for all of 2024. The production has not matched (the unfair) hype so far for this young catching prospect. Salas has a smooth swing but has yet to play well above Low-A. Highly rated tools across the board, Salas hasn’t produced anything at above-average or plus tier yet. The top-10 prospect rank is too high for a prospect that has yet to be produced and is based on potential. Salas may need to be sent down to adjust at Low-A and regain some confidence to make that next jump. Lack of physicality typical international signing isn’t an issue for Salas as he stands 6’1, 185.

Diving into a pure production standpoint, Salas hasn’t done much to show top 100 prospect status. The issue here is the swift promotions when Salas is younger than most high-school seniors. Salas has been playing on average from 4-7 years younger than his competition. A .267 average at 17 years old in Low-A showed the advanced ability of Salas. A .200 average in 160 at-bats in High-A, and a .179 average in 28 Double-A at-bats show the youth of Salas. Potential causes issues for prospect hugging as most don’t reach their full potential anyway. Salas still has years to make adjustments, but I lean toward ranking him closer to 50 in the top 100 lists.


Abimelec Ortiz, 1B, TEX:


One of the more popular picks to enter the top 100 for 2024, Ortiz has struggled in 2024. A breakout 2023, Ortiz hit 33 home runs in 109 games. Ortiz also managed to slash .294/.371/.619 slash line between Low-A and High-A in 2023. The raw power has always been there but the plus average made Ortiz intriguing. There was still a slightly high strikeout rate and a decent walk rate in 2023. This hasn’t been the case in 2024. Ortiz has cut his strikeout rate down almost a full 6% to 21%. Unfortunately, that remains to be the only major positive. 2024 has been a bit unlucky as he holds a .245 BABIP, which may play into the low batting average.

A 2024 slash line of .197/.257/.323, with just 2HR in 33 games is quite the change from the 3 previous seasons. Ortiz went from a 28.6% FB/HR rate to a shocking 5.1%. If the plus power isn’t there for Ortiz, there is little value here. The 30+ home run value allows Ortiz to drop closer to a .250 average and still be a top option at first base. 2024 is his first taste of Double-A, and Ortiz is now 22 years old. For Ortiz to stop the rapid decline in value, he’ll need to start hitting the ball over the fence again.


Honorable Mention


Brock Wilken, 3B, MIL:


One of the popular “sleeper” picks in 2023 FYPDs, Wilken has had an up-and-down start to his career. Plus power is the calling card for Wilken, as he stands 6’4 and 225 pounds. 7 home runs in his first 65 games isn’t exactly eye-popping. Rookie ball and High-A were no issue for Wilken, but Double-A has slowed him down a bit. After being hit in the face with a pitch in 2024, Wilken is back but seeing the same issues. The hit tool isn’t catching up to Double-A pitching, and the strikeouts are a bit high. With a 36% and 31.9% strikeout rate in his two Double-A stints, Wilken needs more consistent contact to see a promotion. Approaching his 22nd birthday, Wilken should see all of 2024 in Double-A.


Ryan Clifford, NYM: 


One of the big returns to the Mets in the Justin Verlander trade, Clifford hasn’t produced as expected. He hit just .188 in 2023 as a Met and 2024 has been disappointingly similar. A 2024 slash line of .189/.381/.262, with only 1 home run has Clifford dropping fast. After hitting just .216 in High-A to start 2024, Clifford was promoted to Double-A. Clifford has registered just 1 hit in his first 20 plate appearances at Double-A. With 53 total strikeouts in 122 at-bats, Clifford is struggling to make consistent contact. For a prospect with above-average power, he currently has just 7 extra-base hits in 2024. He turns 21 years old in late July, so time is on his side but power or a respectable average needs to become prominent.


Feature image by Michael Packard (@CollectingPack on Twitter)

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