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Better Know Your Minors: Dominican Summer League

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I figured I would start a recap of the White Sox minor league system by taking a look at the lowest level first, the Dominican Summer League. The Sox entered two teams this season after closing up shop on their Venezuelan Summer League team. But a quick scan of the stats (and birth dates) from the Sox two Dominican clubs yields little in the way of prospects.

While many of the Major's top stars have come from the Dominican, the league itself is probably comparable to junior college ball with some talented high-schoolers added. There are some players older than 21, but their numbers are limited thanks to the ever continuing search for the next top prospect. The average age is under 19, with the top prospects being 18 or younger. There are some stars, but the overall talent level isn't anything special. A vast majority of these players will never get off the island.

The average batting line in the DSL is .238/.338/.320. The average player has an IsoD of .100 and an IsoP of .82. In other words, they don't hit for much power in the DSL. And since we all know the old saying "you can't walk your way off the island," we can assume that the pitchers are really wild. Because of that, you have to discount some players high OBPs and walk totals, and really penalize anyone who isn't taking their fair share of free passes when evaluating a player solely on the numbers.

Now that we've got the caveats out of the way, let's look at some numbers. Here's a list of the White Sox offensive stars

Pos Player Age AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG +---+--------------+----+------+----+----+---+---+---+----+----+----+-----+-----+----- 3B Luis Sierra 19 246 52 74 17 0 6 51 28 29 .301 .395 .443 1B Johny Celis 21 232 38 67 11 0 8 52 50 37 .289 .431 .440 2B Jeffer Patino 18 219 44 65 9 3 2 34 29 36 .297 .394 .393
Patino is the only position player with a younger than average birthdate and an OPS approaching .800. As a result, he's probably the only player who can currently be classified as a real prospect. I included Sierra and Celis because they were among the league leaders in doubles (Sierra), walks (Celis) and HR (both).

Here's how they compare to other top offensive talents in the division.

Pos Player Team Age AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG +---+--------+------+---+----+---+----+---+---+---+----+----+----+-----+-----+----- 2B Hidalgo Twins 18 190 27 58 13 3 2 28 27 28 .305 .398 .437 SS Franco Royals 17 209 38 59 10 2 1 18 23 34 .282 .355 .364 CF Cid Indians 17 262 37 79 8 2 1 24 28 49 .302 .378 .359 SS Abreu Indians 17 228 34 69 13 7 4 41 18 46 .303 .353 .474 2B Basabe Indians 17 208 38 59 4 3 1 24 45 30 .284 .412 .346 3B Diaz Indians 19 238 40 75 19 2 8 41 37 29 .315 .426 .513 C Aponte Indians 19 237 27 69 18 0 6 39 22 41 .291 .387 .443 OF Jan Tigers ?? 184 50 55 6 3 0 31 57 34 .299 .461 .364
The Indians are the class of the division with young, up-the-middle defenders producing well. They nearly have as many interesting position prospects on one DSL team than the Sox have in their entire system.

Onto the pitching, where the White Sox have, well, nothing...

Pos Player Age W L G GS IP H R ER HR BB SO ERA WHIP +---+---------------+----+---+---+----+---+-----+---+---+----+---+---+---+-----+----- SP Joucer Martinez 21 4 5 16 15 83.1 65 32 22 3 23 73 2.38 1.06
Joucer is the only Sox pitcher with more than 50 innings pitched at a WHIP under 1.45. In a league where the average batting line is anemic, the Sox field only two players with a WHIP under 1.3, and they're both 2 years older than the average age for the league.

Now let's look at the top pitchers in our division

Age W L G GS IP H R ER HR BB SO ERA WHIP +---+----------+---+----+---+---+---+----+----+---+---+---+---+----+----+------+----- SP E Reynoso DET 18 9 0 13 13 70.2 36 10 6 0 23 110 0.76 0.83 SP D Salazar CLE 17 5 3 14 14 64.1 52 25 14 1 12 49 1.96 0.99 SP A Perez CLE 17 1 2 13 10 49.2 41 18 16 3 13 64 2.90 1.09 SP M Garcia MIN 17 7 2 14 13 77.2 60 23 20 2 25 81 2.32 1.09 SP G DL Cruz KC 17 3 2 12 12 56 32 10 7 0 13 55 1.13 0.80 SP K Herrera KC 17 4 1 11 5 42.2 30 6 4 1 15 50 0.84 1.05
And that's just the top DSL talent from within our division. If I was to expand that list to include young guys who I consider worth watching -- perhaps a better classification would be more interesting than Joucer Martinez -- I'd immediately add another 16 guys to the list (included after the jump).

The fast rise of Fautino De Los Santos, who will rank #2 in my off-season White Sox top 10 prospects list, should give the Sox incentive to put forth a more concerted effort in the Dominican. The top international spenders are currently the Red Sox, Yankees, and Mets with Tigers starting to get into the fray as well. It's already paying dividends with Reynoso (Though I'm entirely unsure about the bonus he recieved). The White Sox rarely spend any noteworthy money on international signings, and it clearly shows in their lack of talent in the DSL this season.

More interesting pitchers

                     Age  W   L   G   GS  IP    H    R  ER  HR  BB   SO    ERA   WHIP
+---+----------+---+----+---+---+---+----+----+---+---+---+---+----+----+------+-----   
  SP A Morales  CLE  17   0   8   14  13  53.2  52  39  30   4   21   35   5.03  1.36
  SP S Mendez   CLE  21   5   1   16   0  51.2  43  21  17   1    3   39   2.96  0.89
  RP L Solano   CLE  20   3   1   26   0  51.1  40  14  13   1   16   52   2.28  1.09
  SP SR Marimon  KC  18   1   2   14  10    44  28  14  10   2   18   40   2.05  1.05
  SP S Garrido   KC  17   1   4   14   9    43  34  22  16   0   28   34   3.35  1.44
  RP A Bonilla   KC  18   5   1   17   1  42.1  27  13   9   1   12   33   1.91  0.92
  RP L Perez     KC  17   4   1   16   5  40.2  31  14  13   2   23   40   2.88  1.33
  SP D Santos    KC  18   3   2   11   5  38.2  34  16  12   2    3   23   2.79  0.96
  RP L Santiago  KC  17   2   2   12   5  35.1  30  14  11   2    8   30   2.80  1.08
  SP A Mendez   DET  21   5   4   15  14  78.2  52  23  12   1   30  103   1.37  1.04
  SP W Sierra   DET  20   4   2   14  14    62  49  34  27   0   32   72   3.92  1.31
  SP R Acosta   MIN  20   4   5   14  14  83.1  71  32  23   2   23   48   2.48  1.13
  SP M Munoz    MIN  18   5   3   14  14  70.2  45  22  16   2   34   43   2.04  1.12
  SP C Garcia   MIN  20   4   5   14  12    60  45  23  22   1   29   57   3.30  1.23
  RP E Alvarez  MIN  18   5   1   26   2    58  41  10   5   0   11   48   0.78  0.90
  SP E Cardenas MIN  19   2   3   13  12    52  38  20  12   0   22   56   2.08  1.15