Dodgers Prospect Notes: Beeter picks up where he left off, Sheehan shines, another relief find, impressive pop, and a defensive gem

Clayton Beeter picked up where he left off at the end of 2021, and in more ways than one — he’s pumping 95 mph, missing bats, and his pitch count is in the same neighborhood as well:

Beeter’s future role — starter or reliever — was considered to be undetermined when he was picked in the 2nd round by the Dodgers of the 2020 draft out of Texas Tech. That lack of clarity continued into the 2021 season, with Beeter saying in an interview with David Laurila at Fangraphs that he still didn’t know. As last season progressed, so did the pitch count, and here’s what he averaged per outing by month:

May – 16.2
June – 24.1
July – 32.3
August – 43.3
September – 54.0

This will definitely be something to follow as the season progresses.


It was more of the same for Emmet Sheehan as well, who also threw gas and missed bats in his first outing for Great Lakes:

Sheehan, who was a 6th round pick by the Dodgers out of Boston College in 2021, has one of the more intriguing fastballs in the system. On top of being able to hit 98 mph, the pitch has great carry, and has a pretty incredible vertical approach angle (VAA). VAA is the angle that the ball travels from the pitcher’s hand to the plate, and Sheehan is a standout here:

Alex Chamberlain at FanGraphs wrote a fantastic article on VAA, and also showed a distribution with scouting grades for the VAAs of various pitch types. Sheehan’s four seamer has a 70-grade VAA, and the heater definitely generates whiffs. Pairing that fastball with a changeup that he can both throw for strikes and bury, as well as a developing slider, and he’s definitely a guy to get excited about.


Jonny DeLuca had a big day at the plate out of the leadoff spot for Great Lakes, going 2/4, with 3 RBI, and homering twice:

DeLuca is from Thousand Oaks, and he was picked by the Dodgers in the 25th round of the 2019 draft out of the University of Oregon. He has shown a fair amount of pop since signing, hitting 23 homers in 551 professional PAs coming into this season, and doing while only striking out 90 times.


It’s a familiar refrain at this point — Dodger fans clamor for arm barn help, and Andrew Friedman makes additions, though they might not be the sexy names fans want. Still, hunting for relievers whom they believe will break out, or that they can fix with this one weird trick, has borne fruit — Brandon Morrow, Blake Treinen, Jake McGee, Adam Kolarek, and Phil Bickford all immediately come to mind as strong contributors who had improved results after joining the club.

Jon Duplantier just might be another candidate:

In addition to increased velo, Duplantier’s slider and curve have both added 5″ of vertical movement, and the slider showed 2″ more horizontal movement. Duplantier was signed by the Giants last December, and claimed off waivers by the Dodgers just five days later. Judging by the uptick in his stuff, they may have caught Farhan Zaidi trying to pull a fast one.


Lastly, if the Dodgers ever go away from having a 16-man bullpen (ugh), the glove (and arm) of Sacramento State’s very own James Outman would be a welcome addition:

Hot. Damn.

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