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By Cary Osborne
In the June edition of Dodger Insider magazine, we profiled outfield prospect Scott Schebler. The theme of the story was how Schebler was a notoriously slow starter who takes off once the summer months hit.
When the story was written, Schebler’s numbers were subpar. The No. 8 prospect in the system, added in the offseason to the Dodgers’ 40-man roster, was hitting .208/.299/.377 for Triple-A Oklahoma City entering June with six doubles, one triple, six home runs and 14 RBI.
Then June arrived, and true to form, Schebler turned it on. The 24-year-old was one of the best hitters in the Dodger chain last month. He batted .321/.389/.595 with four doubles, five triples, three home runs and 17 RBI.
A year after leading the Double-A Southern League in triples and home runs, Schebler ranks tied for second in the Pacific Coast League in triples. He is mere percentage points from Corey Seager’s OPS in OKC (.780 to Seager’s .783).
We talked to Dodger director of player development Gabe Kapler about Schebler this week, who said, in reality, Schebler’s early swoon was less that met the eye.
“Scheb all along was performing well. He just wasn’t having a lot of luck,” Kapler said. “He was striking the ball with real authority. He was doing a good job from a number of perspectives. He just wasn’t showing the results in the traditional counting numbers. Now you’re starting to see that. A lot of that is completely out of your control. Scheb’s actually been doing a good job all the way through.”
Here’s more from the past week in minor-league action …
Wednesday at the Beachy: There were many baserunners but also many positives in Brandon Beachy’s fourth rehab game. He went five innings on Wednesday, allowing six hits and three walks, while surrendering one earned run and striking out one batter. The right-hander, making his way back from a second Tommy John surgery, got up to 80 pitches — 20 more than his previous start on June 26.
Beachy escaped a bases-loaded jam in the second inning by getting pitcher Nick Greenwood to ground into a double play. He also got an inning-ending double play in the first with two on.
Tulsa talent: With Ross Stripling back from Tommy John surgery and when Julio Urias returns, Double-A Tulsa could boast a starting pitching staff of five of the Dodgers’ top 23 prospects (according to MLB.com). Urias is No. 2, followed by Jose De Leon at No. 4, Chris Anderson at 6, Stripling at 15 and Cotton at 23.
Stripling last pitched June 25 for Tulsa and threw 63 pitches. He went five innings and allowed one hit, two walks and one earned run while striking out four. We’ll talk more about him next week.
Lee returns: Zach Lee is back after missing a month with right middle finger irritation. The right-hander threw five perfect innings for the Rookie Arizona League Dodgers on Wednesday, striking out two.
Right-hander Jairo Heredia took over for Lee in the sixth inning and was one out away in the ninth inning from completing a perfect game before surrendering two consecutive hits.
No one’s perfect: We’ve mentioned 20-year-old left-hander Leonardo Crawford the past couple of weeks because of his staggering start for the Dominican Summer League Dodgers. His scoreless innings streak to begin the season ended at 27 1/3 frames when, in his start Monday, he gave up a leadoff triple followed by a single. He went two innings in the game against the DSL Rockies and surrendered nine hits and five earned runs.
Who’s hot: Dodgers’ 2015 fourth-round pick Willie Calhoun isn’t wasting any time. The 2015 national community colleges home run leader has four in his last seven games for Rookie League Ogden. In those seven games, the 5-foot-8 second baseman is 9 for 27 with a .333/.455/.778 line.
Veteran pitcher Scott Baker has been outstanding in his last five starts for Oklahoma City. He has surrendered 21 hits, four walks and five earned runs in his past 37 innings. That’s good for a 1.22 ERA and a 0.68 WHIP. Baker has walked just seven batters in 74 1/3 innings this season for Oklahoma City.
- Oklahoma City Dodgers (AAA): 51-27 (first place)
- Tulsa Drillers (AA): 34-41
- Rancho Cucamonga Quakes (High A): 45-31 (first place)
- Great Lakes Loons (Low A): 41-34
- Ogden Raptors (Rookie): 6-8
- AZL Dodgers: 6-4
- DSL Dodgers (Rookie): 13-15
Top 10 prospects: