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Dodgers: Diego Cartaya Turning Heads as One of Baseball’s Best Prospects



The Dodgers have been one of baseball’s greatest organizations in terms of player development for the last decade and their latest top prospect is already making his case to be baseball’s best.

Diego Cartaya, a 20-year-old kid from Venezuela, has long been considered a potential future star at the catching position, but his inexperience has made it hard to project how he would look against stiffer competition. Now that he has had a full minor league season under his belt, it’s clear to anyone that watches him.

Cartaya can absolutely ball.

Geoff Pontes of Baseball America recently dove into what makes Cartaya one of the best up-and-coming prospects. Here’s a bit on what the prospects expert had to say

Potentially a monster in the making, Cartaya is one of the best hitters based on data in the minor leagues.

For years, the only thing that baseball experts could talk about was a future where Keibert Ruiz was the starting catcher for the Los Angeles Dodgers. It seemed almost inevitable that he was the future at the position for this team, then they went out and signed the best overall prospect out of Venezuela in 2018 in Diego Cartaya and have since traded Ruiz.

Pontes took a deep dive into what makes Cartaya great in his eyes. Here’s an excerpt, but we highly recommend you read the full piece on Baseball America.

Cartaya shows above-average raw power …There’s certainly some swing and miss (illustrated by his 33.6% whiff rate), but it’s important to keep in mind Cartaya’s age in relation to his competition. … Behind the plate, Cartaya, like many catching prospects, is a work in progress. But he gets rave reviews on his arm and his improving ability as a receiver.

At 19 years old, Cartaya was among the youngest at the Low-A level in 2021. Still, he excelled at getting on base (.409 OBP) and hunting for pitches he can slug (16 extra base hits in just 31 games).

Dodgers Nation’s Tim Rogers highlighted Cartaya in the middle of last season where he too gave high marks.

Related: Diego Cartaya Dominates With The Quakes

Through all of the noise, it’s important to remember that Cartaya is still just 20 years old, making his standing as the team’s top overall prospect that much more incredible. His journey may just be beginning, but his potential on both sides of the ball is almost impossible to ignore. Like all good teams, the Dodgers always have an eye on the future. Will Smith has done an excellent job behind the plate, but it’s only a matter of time before Diego Cartaya makes his case in the major leagues.

NEXT: Dodgers Insider Believes Corey Seager Felt Pressured By Players Union to Take Rangers Contract

Written by Daniel Palma

Daniel is an avid sports fan who loves his hometown teams. If he's not watching baseball, you can find him playing or coaching. No matter what, he'll always root for the Boys in Blue!

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  1. This is one reason they felt comfortable trading Keibert Ruiz. Cartaya can replace Barnes in 2023.

    If they feel no budgetary constraints, Freeman for 6 years at $30 million per year seems reasonable.

    Muncy at 2d base.

    Then Lux becomes the second utility man after Chris Taylor.

    Everyone gets some play and some rest including all getting ABs as DH.

    • If we sign Freeman, I think lux gets traded for pitching. Taylor with his potential 5 years would be a free agent again at the same time as Lux, so i don’t see lux taking Taylor’s spot.

  2. Muncy would be better suited for 3rd! If we get the kid from Asia to play RF, move Mookie to second, so Freeman at 1st, mookie 2nd, trea at SS. AJ in LF Belli in CF . C Will, I don’t like this. His Defense is a liability!

    • Larry, I applaud you for being one of the few to recognize Opie (Aka the fresh prince) as the behind the dish disaster he is. Cartaya is our clear path to improve our up the middle D so sorely needed to bring back another WS championship with parade to follow!

      Let’s go Dodgers!

  3. They need Will Smith’s bat every day, and Smith needs to prolong his career. Smith should learn a second position and Cartaya as well so they can both be everyday players, catch half the time, and not get beat up catching too often.

  4. Cartaya and Lux should get a solid look this season if the DH is implemented. And–Will Smith should be given some solid training and reps at third or first. We need his bat in the lineup. And Edwin Rios was a force before his injury last year. He averaged a homer every 10 or 11 at bats before last year. Gavin could be an elite fielder at short or 2nd base if he is given a solid chance. He hit really well after being recalled last year. Or go the super utility? Maybe. But we do have CT3 back. At any rate, he needs reps at the plate. That play in centerfield in the playoffs? Not his fault. He should never have been given that task. Pollack won a Gold Glove in center in Arizona. He should have been there. And Cartaya gets time behind the plate when Will DH’s. Have Will and JT be primary DH’s. And we also now have Rios. Barnes still catches as much as he has because he is a good backstop. Diego needs to have a good 20-30 games behind the plate at a minimum this coming season. It is a good time to start promotions to bring down the payroll a bit. We do have some pitching issues that need addressed. And we are sitting around $190 mil with Bauer still on the payroll and Clayton unsigned.

  5. Before we trade Lux, need to lock up T. Turner at s.s. first, 5 or 6 year deal. I don’t recall his age at the moment. K. Bryant would be a good sign. Plays 3b; lf; rf. Do we think AJ Pollock will go unscathed the entire 2022 season? What if Betts’s hip issues flair up again? Surgery? Freeman (great hitter), replaces Seager’s left handed bat, but, do we need Bryant for his versatility more and 1 or 2 more starting pitchers?

  6. Can’t imagine Freeman not returning to the Bravos, face of franchise player for sure. Muncy 1b, 2nd CT3/Lux, SS hitless post Season Trea, 3rd JT/Rios/Opie (486 minor league innings @3B), C Barnes/Cartaya. LF AJ, CF Belli, RF Mookie (I’m not disappointed we lost). Rotation: Butane, Julio, Kersh, Catman/May(post All-star), White/Miller/Pepiot/Jackson. Bullpen, who’s left? Not sure, haven’t been following too closely as I’ve been busy with work.

    Overall, should be good enough for another great run.

    Let’s go Dodgers.

    • Folks Cartaya is 20 years old and not yet nearly ready for the majors. He’s still playing in A ball. You might see him ’23 when Barnes is no longer under contract.

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