Fifteen Latino prospects who could take off in 2023

The MLB Pipeline team typically starts each year with their projections of which prospects they think will take off in the coming season. In 2022, they hit the nail on the head with Michael Harris II, who after a strong Double-A start made the Braves’ big team in May and ended up clinching the American League Rookie of the Year Award.

On this occasion, we will highlight the Latinos in each division who could be on the verge of making a significant leap in 2023:

Darrel Hernáiz, SS (Orioles’ 16th-best prospect)

The Orioles’ first three picks in the 2019 Draft (Adley Rutschman, Gunnar Henderson and Kyle Stowers) have already reached the majors. The Puerto Rican, who was selected in the fifth round that year, could be joining them soon, thanks in part to his ability to defend three positions. Hernáiz, who will be 21 for most of 2023, began glimpsing his offensive potential last year through two levels of Class-A and a brief stint at Double-A.

Junior Caminero, 3B/SS (No. 17 Rays)

It could be argued that Caminero has already taken off. The 19-year-old Dominican was acquired from the Guardians in November 2021 and then hit .314/.384/.498 in 62 games between the Florida Complex League and Atlantic League. About to start his first full season in the minors, the right-handed hitter could be showing all his strength fast. He could be the next billboard name for Tampa Bay.

Miguel Bleis, OF (No. 5 Red Sox)

The Dominican is the organization’s best international prospect since Rafael Devers, also from Dominican Republic. Bleis signed for $1.5 million in 2021. He’s a midfielder with tools that are considered solid to very good. He is ready for his first full season in the minors after hitting .301/.353/.542 with 23 extra-base hits and 18 stolen bases in 40 games in the Florida Complex League.

Everson Pereira, OF (No. 5 Yankees)

The Venezuelan signed for $105 million as one of the best and most complete prospects in the 2017 group. However, Pereira was unable to play 100 games in a season until 2022 due to injuries and the pandemic. After hitting .277/.350/.469 with 15 home runs and 21 steals between Class-A Strong and Double-A, the 21-year-old Pereira offers a solid combination of power and speed, plus the ability to play anywhere. be in the gardens.

Cristian Santana, SS (No. 12 Tigers)

Santana performed above average in the Dominican Summer League in 2021, ranking as one of the breakout candidates last year, but he hit just .215/.379/.366 in 80 games at Class-A Lakeland. That said, he made good contact and drew a solid number of walks. The next step for the Dominican will be to add impact with his bat, something he could do now at 19 years old.

Emmanuel Rodríguez, OF (No. 3 Twins/MLB No. 92)

Yes, the Dominican is already among the top 100 prospects in baseball, but we’ve only just begun to see what he can do on the field after playing just 47 games in 2022 before injuring his meniscus in June. With an entire healthy season, it’s hard to imagine how he couldn’t rank among the top 50 prospects in the majors.

Bryan Ramos, 3B (No. 5 White Sox)

Ramos is one of several Cuban prospects in the White Sox organization. Ramos signed for $300,000 in 2018 and hit .266/.338/.455 with 22 home runs last year, reaching Double-A at age 20. He makes a lot of solid contact and could have the power to average 20 home runs a season. He might fit more as an outfielder than an infielder.

Michael Arroyo, SS (No. 11 Mariners)

Signed for $1.375 million last January, Arroyo made a very good first impression posting a .941 OPS in the Dominican Summer League. There’s a lot of excitement about what the Colombian will do in his US debut. Don’t be surprised if he hits full-season baseball in 2023 and starts coming up in conversations about the top 100 prospects.

Luisángel Acuna, SS/2B (Rangers’ No. 7)

Ronald Acuna Jr.’s younger brother also has a variety of tools, including raw solid power and speed, as well as the ability to handle the glove on short stoppage. Signed for $425,000 in 2018, the Venezuelan hit .277/.369/.426 with 11 home runs and 40 stolen bases in 91 games between High-A and Double-A and then continued to impress in the Arizona Fall League.

Jose Salas, INF (No. 5 Marlins)

The Venezuelan signed for $2.8 million in 2019 and his younger brother, Ethan, could demand more as the top prospect of the 2023 international crop. A switch-hitter with the potential to be a 20-20 player and with the instincts and the arm to stay at shortstop, Salas hit .250/.339/.383 with 33 extra-base hits and 33 steals between Class-A and High-A at 19 years old.

Gabriel Rincones Jr., OF (No. 9 Phillies)

Selected by the Phillies in the third round out of Florida Atlantic University, Rincones didn’t get a chance to make his debut last year due to a minor injury. The outfielder had an 1.110 OPS in one year at Florida Atlantic and has a chance to hit for average and power.

Daniel Guilarte, SS (Brewers’ No. 16)

A left shoulder injury kept Guilarte from playing in 2021 after signing for $1 million in January of that year. Similarly, the Brewers decided to transfer the Venezuelan to the US, where the shortstop hit .306 with a .774 OPS in 36 games in the Arizona Complex League. Guilarte was already known for his athletic ability, good speed and defensive skills at short stoppage. Some similar offensive results (perhaps with a little more power) could increase his bonus. With Jackson Chourio and Sal Frelick last year, Milwaukee showed it knows when to be aggressive with talented prospects, and Guilarte could be next.

Shalín Polanco, OF (Pirates’ No. 25)

You never know when or if a young international prospect is going to start picking up steam. The Pirates gave Polanco $2.35 million in January 2021 and the Dominican outfielder showed signs of progress in his US debut last year. His tools are authentic. He was improving all year of 2022 and could take off in full-season baseball at Brandenton next season.

Aeverson Arteaga, SS (No. 5 Giants)

Known more for his glove than his bat when he signed for $1 million in 2019, Arteaga has shown potential to be a 20-20 player early in his professional career while also providing quality defense at shortstop. . After leading the Arizona Complex League in RBIs (43) while finishing second in extra-base hits (22) and bases reached (99) and third in home runs (nine) in 2021, the 19-year-old hit .270/ .345/.431 with 14 home runs and 11 stolen bases in Class-A.

Samuel Zavala, OF (No. 4 Padres)

Signed for $1.2 million in January 2021, Zavala has shown at every level he’s played that he can hit. In 22 games with Class-A Lake Elsinore in 2022, as a 17-year-old, he hit .254/.355/.508 with 15 extra-base hits in 33 games. There he showed off the left-handed swing that drew attention at first. That promising combination of hitting and power will be on full display this summer and Zavala could quickly rise again, whether he returns with Lake Elsinore or makes another jump to A-Class Alta Fort Wayne.

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