close
close

10 Players to Watch in the 2024 Arizona Complex League – College Baseball, MLB Draft, Prospects

Change is coming to the complex leagues. Instead of their traditional summer start dates, both the Arizona and Florida Complex Leagues will begin their seasons on May 4th. The final regular-season game for both counties will be July 26, just days before the MLB trade deadline.

The reasons for the promotion were listed by JJ Cooper in February. Traditionally, these leagues are where current year draftees take their first steps, but that likely won't be the case in 2024 unless a player signs exceptionally quickly after the draft ends on July 16.

Instead, the leagues will be filled with players from last year's draft who didn't make it into the season and international players who spent their first professional season in the Dominican Summer League.

Here are 10 players to keep an eye on in the Arizona Complex League.

Ramirez was considered by scouts to be the most talented player on Kansas City's DSL team. He finished the year with a 1.055 OPS and eight home runs before being called up to the US League. The 18-year-old combines power and power into something that could form the foundation of a fearsome offensive player. He also has a strong throwing arm, but still needs to do a lot of development work on defense.

Javier Mogollon, 2B, White Sox

Mogollon was signed for a small bonus on January 15, 2023 and stood out as the Chicago DSL club's best player. He's a smaller player, but he packs a big punch into a strong, nervy frame. In the DSL, he showed the ability to make the best contact with his pulling side in the air, which should go a long way in enhancing his above-average raw power. He's a solid defender who can handle shortstop in a pinch, but is best suited to second base. Mogollon is also a plus runner.

Welbyn Francisca, SS, Warden

One of several intriguing players on Cleveland's DSL team, Francisca focuses his game on contact, defense and speed. While no individual tool receives a “plus” grade, he receives above-average grades for his hitting ability, glove workmanship and baserunning. He also gets good marks for his personality. Francisca opened his DSL campaign with a five-hit game and repeated the feat six weeks later. He has a chance to stay at shortstop, but could also slide to second base as he matures.

Luichi Casilla, LHP, Rocky Mountains

Scouts raved about a variety of interesting weapons in the DSL Rockies club this offseason. Casilla might have the highest ceiling of the group. He's a loose-armed lefty who can hit mid-90s fastballs and nasty two-plane sliders with a developmental shift. He's very raw and still has a long way to go, but the end result could be well worth it.

Jesus Tillero, RHP, Dodgers

The Dodgers had the best clubs in the DSL last year, so it should be no surprise that they will field a stellar ACL club. Only 17 years old, Tillero hit his stride in minor league spring training and was interesting. He mixed four-seamer, cutter, slurve and changeup into a repertoire that helped him allow just 19 hits in 30.2 innings while posting 34 strikeouts and only walking six. He's not the most physical pitcher in the world, but he has a chance to fit into a major league rotation one day.

Rayner Arias, OF, Giants

If he hadn't been injured, Arias might have been a little more upset. As it stands, he was the best player in San Francisco's DSL club and will likely be the best player in the ACL club as well. The 18-year-old has a chance to become a true five-tool player and doesn't have a tool on his card that is expected to be below 50 on the 20-80 scouting scale. He potentially has more power and a good chance of staying in midfield.

Felnin Celesten, SS, Mariners

Unlike everyone else on this list, Celesten has no DSL experience. That wasn't the plan, but he missed the entire season due to injury and will instead make his official professional debut once the ACL season begins. If he makes a full return, he has a chance of earning plus grades for speed, strength and arm, as well as 50 or 55 grades for his quickness and defense. The desert could offer Celesten the chance to reintroduce herself on a grand scale.

Braylin Morel, OF, Rangers

Morel was the biggest name in Texas' 2023 international class and performed well in the DSL, where he led the league with 32 extra-base hits, which was the most in the league since 2019. His tools aren't quite as loud as his numbers, but he has the chance to have plus power, which will serve him well if he has to move to right field at some point.

Eduardo Quintero, OF, Dodgers

Quintero was the hitting star of the Los Angeles DSL group, which he led with an outstanding 1.055 OPS, five home runs and 22 stolen bases. He is a plus runner with emerging power, tons of athleticism and a very high level of production ability, especially if he stays in the midfield as he matures. With a strong turnaround in the ACL, he has a chance to move quickly through the ranks of the system.

Jeter Martinez, RHP, Mariners

Even though his minor league spring training was mediocre, Martinez is still a player to keep an eye on given his youth, stellar debut and Seattle's recent track record of leading starters to gold. Martinez has a five-pitch mix that includes four- and two-seam fastballs, a pair of breaking balls and a changeup that he sells well. There are questions about his athleticism and remaining competitiveness, but he has plenty of time to provide answers as he matriculates to the minor leagues.

Anna Harden

Learn More →

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *