In 2014 The Brewers made a bold statement. That statement was that they believed in Gilbert Lara, when they signed in for $3.1 million, the highest ever signing for an international star-ever. At the time, Lara was just a 16 year old from the Dominican Republic. The Brewers, who generally weren’t known for making international signings, came out and made their presence known.
Lara was considered, at the time, to be a top-five international prospect. FanGraphs had him as the best available, while MLB had him at 4th and Baseball America put him at 5th. Lara was so impressive in the instructional league that any plan to move him from SS to third was shelved, and he reportedly had the best batting average coming out of instructs. Lara’s numbers have been mediocre in the Rookie Leagues. While playing in the Arizona Rookie League affiliate Lara posted a line .248/.286/.273 over 51 games, which is nothing special. After the Rookie League wrapped up Lara was bumped up to Helena where he posted even less impressive numbers of .205/.286/.273.
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Those numbers aren’t worrisome at all, given that he’s still 18 and can only buy big league chew gum. But, he has the most potential of any of the Brewer’s prospects. He’s young, REAL young, has tons of raw talent and potential to be an elite player. Tons of upside and still plenty of time for success is partly why Reviewing the Brew has him as the #5 Brewer’s Prospect