The Milwaukee Brewers 28th ranked prospect from last year is now sitting at number 26. And he has not even played a professional game.
Carlos Rodriguez is another international signing with pretty big upside. He was number 28 on the list of Top 30 International Prospects, and the Milwaukee Brewers got him. At the time of signing, the Venezuelan outfielder was 16 years old.
The thing to like about Rodriguez is that he is a polished prospect for his age. He makes good contract and can project with some plus speed. But that is not all, his MLB Pipeline profile says there is a chance he develops into a plus hitter with fielding as well. The comparisons are a young Ender Inciarte and a teenage Gerardo Parra, but farther along in development at the same age.
There is also a CBS blurb that came out at the time of the signing that points to the contrary. Essentially it projects Rodriguez as nothing more than a fourth outfielder. At best, he might be able to hit at the top of a lineup if he develops a patient approach.
How Does He Project?
With the conflicting words about his potential it might be hard to tell which is more accurate. Personally, I am partial to MLB Pipeline, but either one talks about his ability to make contact with the baseball. His ability to do so is going to be very important as he begins to play for the Milwaukee Brewers organization.
He is 17 years old. There is a lot of growing to do, but he seems to be a pretty solid prospect at this point. If he has the pop in his bat that some evaluators are seeing, that bodes well for him. He is on the smaller side, being under six feet and weighing in at under 150 pounds, so that means bat speed is creating any potential for power.
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Things will develop as they do. The Brewers coaching staff will do a good job, but frankly there are a lot of good and young outfield prospects in the system. Anything can happen, and the fact he is so young will help the situation. If he is as polished as his profile suggests, then the baseball world should watch out. We will see more when he actually starts playing.