MLB Pipeline has continued releasing its updated prospect rankings for the 2023 season, which includes a list of the top-10 at each position. Among their latest unveilings, Los Angeles Dodgers prospect Miguel Vargas was listed as the No. 5 third basemen in the Minor Leagues.
Vargas is part of a talented group of third baseman and trails no. 1 Gunnar Henderson (Baltimore Orioles), Brett Bay (New York Mets), Curtis Mead (Tampa Bay Rays) and Josh Jung (Texas Rangers).
Following Vargas are Jacob Berry (Miami Marlins), Cam Collier (Cincinnati Reds), Colt Keith (Detroit Tigers), Coby Mayo (Orioles), and Deyvinson De Los Santos (Arizona Diamondbacks).
Vargas is listed with a 55 grade on the 20-80 scouting scale by MLB Pipeline, which translates into an above-average starter at the Major League level.
Vargas’ hit tool is his carrying card, which is graded at a 65 and essentially means it’s close to elite level and would produce about a .290 batting average in games. He also has 55 power, 50 running, 55 arm and 45 fielding.
The 50 running does seem low, however, as Vargas was in the 94th percentile of sprint speed across the league during his brief time with the Dodgers, which trailed only Trea Turner among team leaders.
MLB Pipeline’s scouting report noted Vargas is an extremely advanced hitter with a good understanding of his abilities and the strike zone. He uses the entire field and possesses elite bat-to-ball skills that allow him to handle both fastball and off-speed pitches.
The 23-year-old does not have elite raw power, but makes hard contact and has the bat speed necessary to produce roughly 25 homers per year.
Vargas also took the time to improve his defense and athleticism, and he can now field multiple positions, including first base, second base and third base. He may see a lot of time at second or in left during the 2023 season, depending on how the Dodgers decide to use Max Muncy, Gavin Lux, Miguel Rojas and Michael Busch.
With Triple-A Oklahoma City in 2022, Vargas batted .304/.402/.511 with 17 home runs, 82 RBI, 99 runs scored and 16 stolen bases over 112 games while also earning a selection to the Pacific Coast League All-Star. Team.
Vargas appeared in 18 games for the Dodgers but only hit .170/.200/.255 in 50 plate appearances. Nevertheless, he is expected to take on a significant role in 2023 as the Dodgers turn to a youth movement.
Miguel Rojas mentoring Miguel Vargas
When the Dodgers acquired Miguel Rojas from the Miami Marlins, they added a veteran leader who is expected to take on a utility role with the team. He is also already making an impact helping craft the organizations future.
Rojas recently revealed that he has been in contact with Vargas about helping him improve defensively, and he has been in contact with Diego Cartaya as well.
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