The Dominican Winter League just started last week, but Cincinnati Reds prospect Alfredo Rodriguez has been wasting little time. The shortstop is playing with the Estrellas Orientales in the league this season. Last night he racked up two hits and drove in a run during their extra-innings loss. The 25-year-old Cuban born infielder has reached base in every game he’s played thus far during the season and is hitting .333 with a .385 on-base percentage. He has not had an extra-base hits thus far.

During the regular season most of the time he saw came with Double-A Chattanooga. With the Lookouts he hit .286/.325/.347 with 18 doubles, 2 triples, and a home run in 104 games. He spent the final month of the year in Triple-A Louisville where he hit .169/.261/.221 for the Bats in 23 games. Between the two stops he stole 16 bases.

Last night also saw Blake Trahan make his winter league debut. The shortstop is playing this winter with Licey. He didn’t join the team at the very start of the season, but got there within the first week and was impactful in his debut, going 1-3 with a run scored for the Tigres. Outside of a 4-game rehab stint with Greeneville, the entirety of 2019 was spent in Triple-A Louisville for Trahan where he hit .226/.279/.319.

Alex Powers made his second appearance in the Mexican Winter League last night for Hermosillo. The right-handed reliever tossed 1.1 hitless innings. He worked around a catchers interference call by inducing a ground ball double play to end his first inning of work. He would start the 8th inning and get an pop-up from the first batter before being replaced. Powers has now thrown 3.1 hitless innings over his two outings in the early goings of the league.

As always, for a quick reference guide to how all of the Cincinnati Reds players are performing in the fall and winter leagues around the world – here’s a link to the MLB Winter League page for the organization.

Why the Reds are making changes in development

I’ve written about it numerous times in the 14 months since the chain reaction began of wholesale changes in the scouting and development departments. It started early in August of 2018 when I got word that the Reds were going to be getting a new farm director. About a week later it was official, as Jeff Graupe was promoted to a newly created position in the front office. What quickly followed was that the director of amateur scouting, Chris Buckley, was also being promoted to a newly created position in the front office and would be replaced in his previous job. That led into the offseason that saw several other jobs within the farm system and scouting hierarchy changing. That’s continued again this offseason. The biggest change has been the hiring of Kyle Boddy as the director of pitch initiatives and pitching coordinator. But that’s not the only move.

Within the last month it was reported by Bobby Nightengale of the Cincinnati Enquirer that several managers and coaches in the farm system wouldn’t be returning. Yesterday evening he published a new article, while speaking with President of Baseball Operations Dick Williams about more of the changes, and why they were happening.

It does take time, but they are keeping their finger on the pulse of what’s going on with player development. That means we’ve had to make some changes we have a consistent message coming all the way.

There’s a lot more in the article from Nightengale, so you should be sure to go read it. But the quote above echos what I’ve been saying at times about things that were being relayed to me about some of the development in years past about the varying philosophies that were being taught in the organization.

4 Responses

  1. Krozley

    Holy cow, the new potential minor league blow up is quite the bombshell. I figure Doug will have a lot to say as JJ Cooper did on BA.com. I cringe already at some of the comments that will be shared.

    • DaveCT

      I’m thinking of all of the families whose best if not only way to see professional baseball is at a minor league game.

  2. MBZ

    The 2020 AAA season will be very telling for Alfredo. I’ve been looking forward to this guy making it to the majors. Hopefully between Rodriguez, Garcia, and India we will have someone ready to take over the SS in 2021.

    • Oldtimer

      I saw him early in ST 2019 (first week). He looked pretty good in INF but that didn’t mean much in February 2019. His glove is MLB caliber. His bat, we’ll see.