2021 Dodgers Digest All-Prospect Team

Michael Busch. Photo by: Cody Bashore

We missed this post last season due to the pandemic, but it’s back and better than ever — sure, let’s go with that. This is the 2021 Dodgers Digest All-Prospect team. It’s based on a prospect’s performance during the season and factors in future projection a bit.

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Here are the previous iterations of the team.

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2021 Los Angeles Dodgers All-Prospect 1st Team

Catcher: Diego Cartaya, 19, Low-A Rancho Cucamonga
.298/.409/.614, 10 HR, 31 RBI, 6 2B, 13.1 BB%
Cartaya is the next in the long line of Dodger catching prospects. He has a chance to be LA’s primary catcher in a few years, even with Will Smith still around. That says more about Cartaya and less about Smith.

First base: Justin Yurchak, 24, High-A Great Lakes/Double-A Tulsa
.365/.443/.485, 7 HR, 58 RBI, 18 2B, 12.6 BB%
Yurchak has done nothing but hit since being acquired from the White Sox for Manny Banuelos, but he’s still not highly regarded as a prospect. He’s limited defensively and may not hit for enough power to play everyday. He could carve out a Matt Beaty-like role on a second-division team, minus the ability to play a corner outfield spot.

Second base: Michael Busch, 24, Double-A Tulsa
.267/.386/.484, 20 HR, 67 RBI, 27 2B, 14.1 BB%
Busch might be the Dodgers’ future at second base, provided he can handle it, defensively. He has been comped to Max Muncy, but he may not ever develop into that good a hitter. Still, outside of the next player on this list, he’s the best position player prospect in the system.

Third base: Miguel Vargas, 21, High-A Great Lakes/Double-A Tulsa
.319/.380/.526, 23 HR, 76 RBI, 27 2B, 8.3 BB%
Vargas followed up a breakout 2019 season with an even breakier-out 2021 season. With Justin Turner showing his age a bit, Vargas’ time at third base could come a bit sooner than expected. He was named the Dodgers’ (and our) Minor League Player of the Year.

Shortstop: Eddys Leonard, 20, Low-A Rancho Cucamonga/High-A Great Lakes
.296/.390/.539, 22 HR, 81 RBI, 29 2B, 10.4 BB%
Leonard had perhaps the most surprising season in the Dodgers’ system. He had shown a glimmer of talent in the lower levels of the minors, but he busted out in a big way in 2021. If he continues to perform as well or nearly as well as he did in ’21, he could get a lot more notoriety as a prospect.

Left field: Ryan Noda, 25, Double-A Tulsa
.250/.383/.521, 29 HR, 78 RBI, 15 2B, 15.6 BB%
Noda is becoming more than just the other prospect the Dodgers acquired in the Ross Stripling deal. He had a strong season with the Drillers and is on the Luke Raley/Zach Reks path to the majors. I’m not sure if that last part is actually a good thing, but he has a enough power and a good enough eye to at least get a shot in the bigs.

Center field: James Outman, 24, High-A Great Lakes/Double-A Tulsa
.266/.379/.490, 18 HR, 54 RBI, 23 SB, 12.8 BB%
One of the most athletic prospects in the system, Outman is quickly turning into a legitimate prospect. He has some of the best power/speed combination in the system and can play a legit center field. He’s eligible to be added to the 40-man roster this winter, and he absolutely should be.

Right field: Andy Pages, 20, High-A Great Lakes
.265/.394/.539, 31 HR, 88 RBI, 25 2B, 14.3 BB%
Pages should have been hitting all these home runs in the Angels’ system, but Arte Moreno nixing the proposed trade in February 2020 kept Pages in the system, and he might be the best outfield prospect the Dodgers have. He’s a profile right fielder with plenty of power and arm for the position.

Starting Pitcher 1: RHP Bobby Miller, 22, High-A Great Lakes/Double-A Tulsa
2.40 ERA, 2.83 FIP, 0.94 WHIP, 30.4 K%, 5.6 BB%
Our Dodger MiLB player of the year, Miller is developing into the frontline starter the Dodgers thought he might be when they took him at the end of the first round in 2020. He was on a bit of a pitch count and missed five weeks due to an oblique injury, but he’s on track to make his debut sometime in 2022.

Starting Pitcher 2: RHP Gavin Stone, 22, Low-A Rancho Cucamonga/High-A Great Lakes
3.76 ERA, 3.17/2.20 (A/A+) FIP, 1.23 WHIP, 36.5 K%, 6.6 BB%
Stone was the more unheralded selection of the ’20 draft, but he showed quite well in his pro debut. He didn’t face as advanced competition as Miller did, but the Dodgers may have found another one.

Starting Pitcher 3: RHP Andre Jackson, 25, Low-A Rancho Cucamonga/Double-A Tulsa/Triple-A Oklahoma City/Los Angeles
3.68 ERA, 5.82/4.71/6.17 FIP (A/AA/AAA), 1.11 WHIP, 26.3 K%, 7.7 BB%
Jackson contributed in LA this season and could do so again in 2022. The FIP is a bit concerning, but he has the stuff to be a solid No. 4 starter in the majors. His changeup is second to Pepiot’s in the system and another full offseason could help him improve next season.

Starting Pitcher 4: RHP Hyun-il Choi, 21, Low-A Rancho Cucamonga/High-A Great Lakes
3.55 ERA, 3.89/4.48 (A/A+) FIP, 0.97 WHIP, 25.5 K%, 4.3 BB%
Choi was the Dodgers’ MiLB pitcher of the year, and he performed well in his first full-season test. He doesn’t have the most overwhelming stuff, but he has some of the best pitchability in the system. With the Dodgers’ player development department, he’s one to watch going forward.

Starting Pitcher 5: RHP Landon Knack, 23, High-A Great Lakes/Double-A Tulsa
3.18 ERA, 2.33/5.20 (A+/AA) FIP, 0.93 WHIP, 33.3 K%, 3.2 BB%
Knack had one of the more impressive seasons in 2021. He showed plus-plus command and even better stuff than he showed in college. He’s a big-time breakout candidate for next season.

Relief Pitcher 1: RHP Nick Robertson, 22, Double-A Tulsa
3.06 ERA, 3.41 FIP, 1.23 WHIP, 25.8 K%, 7.0 BB%
It was a bit of a down year for Dodger relief prospects as a whole, but Robertson stood out. He has a future in the LA bullpen, which could come as early as next season.

Relief Pitcher 2: LHP Justin Bruihl, 24, Double-A Tulsa/Triple-A Oklahoma City/Los Angeles
2.61 ERA, 2.48/3.49 (AA/AAA) FIP, 1.03 WHIP, 25.8 K%, 7.0 BB%
He isn’t the most overwhelming thrower in the system, but Bruihl was effective and had some important appearances for the Dodgers down the stretch and in the postseason. He could be a fixture in the bullpen for the next few seasons.

Relief Pitcher 3: RHP Justin Hagenman, 24, Double-A Tulsa
3.45 ERA, 3.18 FIP, 1.15 WHIP, 30.3 K%, 7.1 BB%
Hageman followed up a solid 2019 season with an equally solid 2021 season. His stuff has improved a bit and could be a legitimate relief prospect if he has another good season in 2022.

Relief Pitcher 4: RHP Guillermo Zuniga, 22, Double-A Tulsa
3.06 ERA, 3.82 FIP, 1.08 WHIP, 33.8 K%, 9.0 BB%
The Dodgers got him from the Braves when they had to vacate their 2015-16 international signing class. He has thrown mostly in relief as a Dodger prospect and had his bet season to date, and he did it in the proving ground of Double-A. He’s a sleeper to make his MLB debut in 2022.

Relief Pitcher 5: RHP Mark Washington, 25, Double-A Tulsa
2.00 ERA, 4.96 FIP, 1.14 WHIP, 25.4 K%, 10.5 BB%
Despite being 6-foot-7, Washington doesn’t have overpowering stuff, but he knows how to use it and had his best season as a pro. He could be a solid middle relief prospect going forward.

2021 Dodgers Digest All-Prospect 2nd Team

NamePosition
Keibert RuizC
Imanol Vargas1B
Jorbit Vivas2B
Brandon Lewis3B
Alex De JesusSS
Ryan WardLF
Jonny DeLucaCF
Jose RamosRF
Ryan PepiotSP 6
Gerardo CarrilloSP 7
Clayton BeeterSP 8
Kendall WilliamsSP 9
Jose MartinezSP 10
Darien NunezRP 6
Zach WillemanRP 7
Aaron OchsenbeinRP 8
Aldry AcostaRP 9
Andrew SchwaabRP 10

Notes about the second team:

  • Ruiz may have topped Cartaya, if he had remained in the system
  • Vivas has a chance to be the next really good hitting prospect in the system
  • Lewis hit 30 HR despite not playing in 100 games
  • De Jesus is still a boom-or-bust prospect, and the next two seasons will be telling
  • Ward teamed with Pages to give GL a formidable offense
  • Ramos is a breakout candidate for next season
  • Pepiot struggled a bit in his late-season promotion to Triple-A
  • Carrillo went to Washington as part of the Max Scherzer/Trea Turner deal
  • Beeter should have the pitch restriction limits lifted next season

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Next time you read about prospects here, it should be the beginning of the 2022 Top 100.

About Dustin Nosler

Dustin Nosler began writing about the Dodgers in July 2009 at his blog, Feelin' Kinda Blue. He co-hosted a weekly podcast with Jared Massey called Dugout Blues. He was a contributor/editor at The Hardball Times and True Blue LA. 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.