Cincinnati Reds Top Prospect Report – Alfredo Rodriguez

Mandatory Credit: Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports /

How did the Cincinnati Reds’ top prospects do during the 2016 season?

While the Cincinnati Reds struggled to a 68-94 record, there is plenty of reason for hope in the future. The team is loaded with talented prospects across all of their minor-league teams, and many of those players started off with promising starts in their careers.

Let’s take a look at how the Reds’ top 10 prospects (per MLB Pipeline at the end of the season) performed as we head into the new year. This is a special look at those prospect that were not on the top ten list to start the season, but were there at the end of it.

Alfredo Rodriguez (SS)

2016 Stats (Rookie):
Dominican: .234/.333/.299, 5 2B, 0 HR, 8 RBI, 9 BB, 16 K, 0 SB

Cuban-born Alfredo Rodriguez began his Cincinnati Reds career in the Dominican Summer League.  As a 22-year old, former Serie Nacional Rookie of the Year in Cuba, expectations were and are sky high for the shortstop.  Offensively, Rodriguez didn’t look up to the task in the summer league.  That may end up OK, as Rodriguez could be sharing the left side of the infield with number 1 prospect, Nick Senzel.

He was also the Gold Glove winner at shortstop in Cuba in 2014.  He ranked third in steals with 12 in the Serie Nacional.  Even though the MLB Pipeline has him ranked as the Reds’ number six best prospect at the end of the season, Rodriguez has no power to speak of yet.

Ironically, Rodriguez was awarded the Rookie of the Year after the initial winner, Yusnier Diaz defected to join MLB.  Now Rodriguez, himself, has left Cuba.  Diaz signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers in November of 2015.

The Dominican Summer League is the home of many future MLB players for the Cincinnati Reds.

The DSL Reds are a team comprised of mostly young players with several of them being listed as shortstops.  Rodriguez was one of the oldest, but still one of the weakest offensively.  Hidekel Abreu, for example, is listed as the starting shortstop, but played more first than anyone else on the roster.

The DSL is a league full of base runners.  Several players had double digits in steals.  Rodriguez, however, led the teams in stolen bases without a caught stealing.

Mariel Bautista is the secret star of the team as its center fielder.  2016 was the second year that the 19-year old played for the DSL Reds.  He tied for the team lead in runs scored, while maintaining an OBP of higher than .400.

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Rodriguez has a long way to go to beat out these 19-year olds.  His defense will help him make it to the big leagues.  Hopefully, the MLB Pipeline is finally right about an eventual offensive surge from an international signing.