Season in Review: Henry Rodriguez Doug Gray December 27, 2010 19 Comments Henry Rodriguez came into the 2010 season as a mostly unknown prospect despite having hit .322 during the 2009 season for the GCL Reds. He was a switch hitter who showed a solid ability to put the bat on the ball, but he also spent his time split up all over the infield (except first base). In 2010 Rodriguez would play second base all season except when he would fill in at shortstop when Didi Gregorius got a day off. Rodriguez jumped from the GCL into the Midwest League from 2009 to 2010 and it seemed to take him a little bit of time to get adjusted. In April, Rodriguez showed good power as he slugged .473 on the month, but his average was .269. While that isn’t bad, he coupled it with just two walks and one hit-by-pitch which resulted in a .292 on-base percentage. The bright side of the month was that he only struck out four times during the entire month, far and away his lowest strikeout total in any month. In May, Rodriguez took a step backwards as he struggled to do much on the month. His power went away as he slugged .346 and he again had an average in the .260′s and his on-base percentage fell down to .288 in May. Strikeouts jumped from 4 in April to 17 in May. The jump in strikeouts wasn’t a big issue though, as the rate was still quite solid. June began a three month stretch where Rodriguez went on a tear through the end of the season. As it warmed up in June, the second baseman hit .333/.354/.516 over 96 plate appearances. The only ding on his resume was that he once again only drew 3 walks in the entire month, making his on-base percentage heavily batting average weighted. July saw a step backwards, but only because June was so strong. Rodriguez would go on to hit .296/.315/.509 in July, showing good power once again. However he also only walked 3 times during the month again. He went on to strike out 18 times on the month in 111 plate appearances, which is a solid rate of contact. In August and September the switch hitter literally doubled his season’s walk total as his 11 walks in the 5 week stretch matched his 11 walks from April through July. Over that time period he went on to hit .358/.413/.482 with 20 strikeouts in 150 plate appearances. He also earned a week long promotion to end the season with the Lynchburg Hillcats where he would hit .250/.250/.250 over six games. Overall, Rodriguez had a quality season, showing flashes of good skills throughout the year. Power from both sides of the plate, good speed that he can use well on the base paths and a good ability to put the bat on the ball. The one major question mark in his game is his ability to draw a walk. Before August, he had walked twice in April and three times in each of the next three months before drawing eleven in August and September. Here is his spray chart for the season As Right Handed Hitter To Total % Single Double Triple HR AVG SLG IsoP P 6 5% 0 0 0 0 .000 .000 .000 C 2 2% 0 0 0 0 .000 .000 .000 1B 5 4% 1 0 0 0 .200 .200 .000 2B 12 9% 0 0 0 0 .000 .000 .000 3B 14 11% 2 0 0 0 .143 .143 .000 SS 25 20% 1 0 0 0 .040 .040 .000 LF 25 20% 10 7 0 2 .760 1.280 .520 CF 22 17% 9 0 0 0 .409 .409 .000 RF 16 13% 4 1 0 0 .313 .375 .063 As Leftt Handed Hitter To Total % Single Double Triple HR AVG SLG IsoP P 23 7% 2 0 0 0 .087 .087 .000 C 5 2% 0 0 0 0 .000 .000 .000 1B 24 7% 1 0 0 0 .042 .042 .000 2B 33 10% 2 0 0 0 .061 .061 .000 3B 23 7% 4 0 0 0 .174 .174 .000 SS 32 10% 3 0 0 0 .094 .094 .000 LF 61 19% 12 12 0 0 .393 .590 .197 CF 57 18% 23 7 1 1 .561 .772 .211 RF 66 20% 30 10 2 11 .803 1.515 .712 19 Responses awa85 December 27, 2010 Maybe it was just me but he seemed a little big to play the middle infield. How was he with the glove and getting to the ball? Would he be an average 2B defender? Doug Gray December 27, 2010 He got better defensively as the year went along. He probably can handle 2B in the long run. Randall December 27, 2010 Henry doesn’t look big at all to me. What is he about 5’10″ maybe 160 pounds? MK December 27, 2010 That 5’10″ might be with high heels. I am 5’10″ and I am taller than him, although that is what his bio says. He might be too small to play anywhere else. awa85 December 27, 2010 Listed at 150 lbs, but seems like the Ronnie Belliard body type instead of an athletic Brandon Phillips. Just does not have an athletic look to him, how does his D play? Stock December 27, 2010 He’s playing SS this winter. That would probably indicate he is capable at 2B. RobL December 27, 2010 Rodriguez is a player I like alot. He is not a big guy, but he has good pop and can run some. He just needs to walk more and I think he good be a good 2nd baseman. People have been dreaming on Torreyes this year, but he only walked one time in 114 PA. I think Rodriguez can hit like Torreyes, but is probably a better fielder. Rodriguez should have insane numbers in the Cal league. MK December 27, 2010 Henry, is still very young and I think the mental part of his game is the biggest draw back right now which should improve with maturity. He seems to be in lala land sometimes on defense and basepaths but again this should come. HenrY could be a Belliard type who always struggles maintaing playing weight and shape. But again, could be baby fat. He will be 21 in Feb. Randall December 27, 2010 I wonder if anyone thinks that Henry is too big to play middle infield, what they think about Valaika? Alan Horn December 27, 2010 Doug, you did a great job with the Prospect Guide. I got mine today and have really enjoyed reading it. I would recommend it to any Red’s fan. Doug Gray December 27, 2010 Thanks Alan, glad it got there. 44reds December 27, 2010 Fred Lewis or Pods? Or do you pass on both and go another direction? If so, who would you target with the Rhodes money? Keep up the great work in ’11 Doug. Doug Gray December 27, 2010 Depends on the money. Lewis has been in a decline each and every year. But I wouldn’t be opposed to either on a cheap deal. I still have my hopes set out there that Dave Sappelt or Chris Heisey can take left field and run away with it in spring training though. Alan Horn December 27, 2010 I agree. I would like to continue seeing our home grown players succeed. Long term I think that has to happen for the Reds to be successful. DaveCT December 27, 2010 May also be the best use of the LF position, if Sappelt or Heisey bat leadoff. With Phillips, Votto, Bruce, Rolen, Stubbs, Hanigan/Hernandez batting 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7, then Janish 8th, its the best use of left field in my opinion. The Duke December 27, 2010 I’m higher on HRod than most and have him as my 12th ranked Reds prospect. He may never be a .080-.100 isoOBP guy, but if he can get it up to .050 than that is more than enough with his hit tool. He has suprising power for his size and like someone said, he is only 21 in Feb, so that power may mature a little more as well. Doug Gray December 27, 2010 Yeah, I think if he continues to progress on a natural curve for a hitter, his plate discipline won’t be an issue. He will never be a huge walk guy, but if he can walk 35-40 times in a season it will be enough assuming his hit tools also keep moving forward. Mark Young December 28, 2010 I was wondering why HRod plays SS everyday in the Venezuela winter league and he rarely plays SS in the Reds system. Is the caliber of Winter ball AA or low A level? I like HRod a lot we seem to be getting more players from Venezuela than usual. Hope we can still continue to sign more players like Torreyes and HRod in the future. Doug Gray December 28, 2010 I would say its around high A or AA in Venezuela. He probably plays shortstop because he can hit well and they want his bat in the lineup. that won’t happen here, we have too many true shortstops.