2020 Dodgers Top 100 Prospects: No. 7, RHP Brusdar Graterol

Brusdar Graterol (Photo: Cody Bashore)

We had the youngest prospect in the Top 100 in the last post, so now we have the newest Dodger prospect in this Top 100. This is Brusdar Graterol, who has some of the best stuff in the system.

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Previous Entries

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I’ve included Future Value (FV) grades and risks for the Top 50 prospects. For example, if a guy gets a “50 low,” he has a really good chance to be an average player at his position. If a guy gets a “55/High,” there’s a good chance he won’t reach that ceiling, but the potential is there. The grades are 20-80 (50 is average), and the risks are as follows:

  • Low: Players who are usually older, have debuted, are relievers and/or have higher floors than ceilings
  • Medium: Players who are a mix of younger and older, usually have higher floors
  • High: Players who are usually younger with potential, but also question marks
  • Extreme: Players who are generally younger with star potential, but a ton of question marks

This is to show what value a player might provide at the MLB level. The higher the risk, the less likely a player will reach that ceiling.

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Editor’s Note: I am not a scout (#notascout). I am an amateur when it comes to evaluating players. I don’t claim to be a pro, I just want to pass along the information I observe/obtain to the people. Notes and comments are based on personal observation, talking to sources, reading scouting reports and watching video. For future entries in this series: All ratings in the charts below are on the standard 20-80 scouting scale, where 50 is roughly average, 80 is elite and nearly unattainable and 20 is unacceptably poor. Enjoy.

Other Notes: “Role” is a realistic future role (slightly optimistic in some cases). Age is the 2020 season age for the player (June 30 is the cutoff date).

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Rating Key

80 — Elite
75 — Borderline Elite
70 — Plus-plus
60-65 — Plus
55 — Above-average
50 — Average
45 — Fringe-average
40 — Below-average
30-35 — Poor
20-25 — Very Poor

7. Brusdar Graterol

DOB: 8/26/98Age: 21Height: 6’1Weight: 265Bats: RightThrows: RightPosition: RHP

Acquired: International free agent (Venezuela), August 2014, $150,000 signing bonus; trade with Twins on Feb. 10, 2020

Physical description: Large adult son, stout

Strengths: Elite-level velocity, incredible movement, swing-and-miss slider

Weaknesses: Reliever profile, no discernible changeup, shoulder issues

Key statistics: 1.91 ERA, 25.8 K%, 9.7 BB% (AA/AAA/Rk); 4.66 ERA, 3.42 FIP, 25.0 K%, 5.0 BB% (9 2/3 IP, MLB)

Role: High-leverage RP/closer; No. 3/4 SP

Player comparison: Diego Castillo

Summary: The Twins inked Graterol to a modest bonus shortly after his 16th birthday. It seems to have been a great investment on their part. In a win-now mode, when the Dodgers and Red Sox came calling to help facilitate a 3-team deal, Graterol was the player who interested both teams. The Red Sox passed because of his medicals, so the Dodgers jumped at the opportunity to acquire the hard-throwing right-hander, who made his MLB debut with the Twins last season. The MLB sample size is small, but even with that, there were some encouraging bits of information.

Graterol operates with a legitimate high-90s fastball that has touched 102 MPH. He sinks it most of the time, and the pitch has some wicked movement. With the sinker going out of style, he’s still able to be successful and miss bats with it. He’ll need to work on his 4-seamer if he wants to be more effective up in the strike zone, which the Dodgers like to be when it comes to all their pitchers (established and prospects). He pairs it with a high-80s slider that features tight spin and cutter-like tendencies. The Dodgers might try to get him to add more tilt to it to give it more of a true slider look. It may also help him against lefties. He also has a changeup that reaches the low-90s, but he uses it sparingly. If he wants a chance of being an MLB starter, he’ll have to improve it or add a legitimate third pitch. If he’s destined for the bullpen, his fastball-slider combination will be more than enough.

Before the rest of the report, have a look at this.

Yes, the sample size is incredibly limited, but man, he has all the makings of an impact MLB pitcher.

The biggest knock on Graterol is his delivery. It’s a bit of a higher-effort delivery that isn’t athletic like a lot of Dodger pitching prospects. He has a three-quarters arm slot that helps him get plus-movement on his pitches (especially his sinker). He whips his arm through his delivery that could put extra strain on his elbow and shoulder. He missed two months with a shoulder impingement last season and already has a Tommy John procedure in his ledger, so all these factor into a relief profile. But if any developmental staff is going to maximize his potential (as a starter), it’s the Dodgers.

He’ll need to watch his conditioning, seeing as he was 170 pounds when he signed almost six years ago. But Greaterol has the elite stuff to be either a top-flight closer-type or a nasty mid-rotation starter, provided he can improve his delivery and add a consistent third pitch. If he doesn’t break camp with the Dodgers, he’ll begin the season in Triple-A. He should see ample time in Los Angeles’ bullpen in 2020.

Video

Video courtesy of braverman26.

ToolPresentFuture
Fastball7580
Slider5560
Changeup3545
Command/Control3545
Delivery4045
FV/Risk55Medium

2019 Ranking: N/A
2020 Location: Triple-A Oklahoma City/Los Angeles
ETA: Debuted 2019

Next Up: Prospect No. 6

About Dustin Nosler

Dustin Nosler
Dustin Nosler began writing about the Dodgers in July 2009 at his blog, Feelin' Kinda Blue. He co-hosts a weekly podcast with Jared Massey called Dugout Blues. He is a contributor/editor at The Hardball Times. He graduated from California State University, Sacramento, with his bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in digital media. While at CSUS, he worked for the student-run newspaper The State Hornet for three years, culminating with a 1-year term as editor-in-chief. He resides in Stockton, Calif.