To what should be the surprise of no one, Corey Seager on Friday was named the 2014 California League Most Valuable Player. While he isn’t in the Cal League anymore, he still ranks at or near the top in many statistical categories.
His .352 batting average (minimum 350 plate appearances) is one point behind 23-year-old Jordy Lara of High Desert (Mariners). He still ranks 11th in on-base percentage (.411) and first in slugging percentage (.633). Seager hit 18 home runs and 34 doubles in his 80 games with Rancho Cucamonga thi season. The kid can flat-out hit, and he was rewarded as such.
At the time of his promotion — following the California/Carolina League All-Star Game — he led the league in extra base hits, slugging percentage, OPS and doubles (hat tip to the Quakes’ official Twitter account).
Since going to Double-A Chattanooga, Seager has not stopped hitting. He owns a .333/.356/.495 triple slash with two home runs, 11 doubles and 37 hits in 28 games (all while playing shortstop). I’d like to see him walk a little more, but when you’re hitting as well as he is, I can understand why he’s more prone to swing away.
Seager is the first Dodger prospect to win a minor-league MVP award since 2010. He’s the first High-A prospect to win it since Carlos Santana in 2008 when the Dodgers’ affiliate was the Inland Empire 66ers. Then, Santana was traded for Casey Blake. Sigh. Seager is the first Quake to win it since Brandon Wood in 2005, when the Quakes were an affiliate of the Angels.
The future is bright for Seager, and he has justified all the pre- and midseason prospect rankings. He’s my No. 1 prospect, and that won’t change entering the 2015 season (provided he’s still in the organization, which he should be).