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Dodgers: Rylan Bannon is Scorching the Ball in Rancho Cucamonga

Dodgers
Jun 19, 2018; Lancaster, CA, Cal League South third baseman Rylan Bannon (4) is thrown out at first on a double play in the seventh inning of the Cal League All-Star Game held at The Hanger, home of the Lancaster Jethawks. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

If you have never gotten the chance to visit a Class A game in Rancho, it’s quite the treat. The scoreboard is incredibly small and hard to read, the beer is usually sort of flat, and the in-game entertainment is sort of depressing. The real upside comes with the talent you get to see. And boy is the Dodgers farm stocked with talent. One guy, in particular, is catching everyone’s attention.

It’s fairly common for Major League pitchers to make their rehab starts at Class A ball. What’s not common is to have a minor leaguer take you deep. Bannon did just that against the Angels’ Garret Richards. Don’t look down on Richards too much though, as Bannon has made it a habit this year to take everyone deep. He currently is the Cal League home run leader with 19 on the season.

Bannon is also hitting 296 with a slugging percentage of 568. That slugging percentage would rank him in the top ten in the majors right now. Obviously, Class A is a far-cry from the likes of Major League caliber talent. But it’s hard to ignore what Bannon has accomplished in just 80 games.

It’s even more impressive when you realize that this is his first year at Class A. The Dodgers took Bannon in the eighth round of the 2017 draft out of Xavier. Bannon, a standout third baseman, slashed 325/439/618 with 14 home runs in his final year at Xavier. Even more impressive than that? His defense. His college years were filled with highlight reel footage with the glove.  The Dodgers have given him time at second base as well, despite profiling as a long-term third baseman.

Analysis

There is no way to know for sure which direction a prospect will go. Sometimes even the best prospects scouts have ever seen hit a wall and never rebound. Bannon does look to have quite a bit of promise though. The Dodgers 28th ranked prospect is just 22 years old, and we could be seeing him very soon.

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Written by Brook Smith

Brook is the Senior Editor of Dodgers Nation, with several years of experience in sports journalism. He is an avid Dodgers and Lakers fan, and can be spotted fairly often at Dodger Stadium and Staples Center.

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