2020 Diamondbacks Minor League Report

Alek Thomas, Kane County Cougars. Photo credit Rikk Carlson, @rikkcarl10 on Twitter

Welcome Diamondbacks fans to my first team focused report. It is an honor and a privilege to be covering this great organization for Prospects1500. You can follow me on Twitter (@JWeisser88) to see my Diamondbacks daily standout performances once the season starts but with the season’s start date yet to be determined due to the Coronavirus, I decided to focus on reports of players that we will be anticipating watching/following this season. I did one per level along with some names of players that stood out to me that I got a chance to watch play at Kane County (Arizona’s Low-A Affiliate) last season as well as a few players that stood out to me as amateur players that I’m excited to watch develop.

AAA: Daulton Varsho, C, Reno Aces

2017 2nd Round Draft Pick of the Arizona Diamondbacks. Daulton Varsho is the son of former major league outfielder Gary Varsho and was named after Gary’s teammate Darren Daulton. He’s performed well as a pro throughout his career in the minor leagues making it up to AA in his second full season in 2019. While in the Southern League in 2019 he had an amazing second half in which he put up a slash line of .344/.420/.599 which helped him to lead the league in runs scored, slugging, and OPS, while ranking among the leaders in average and on base. I believe his talent probably warrants a higher ranking but there are still plenty of questions as to what position he will play in the majors as he’s blocked at catcher by Carson Kelly

Age: 23 Size: 5’10”, 190 Bats: L Throws: R ETA: 2020

Hitting: Varsho is an above average hitter with a good knowledge of the strike zone. He also makes solid contact and should develop above average power. He’s an above average runner who is able to steal bases as evidenced by his 40 stolen bases over the past 2 seasons.

Fielding: Varsho is a really good athlete who is a good blocker but might not stick behind the plate as a regular due to his below average arm. He’s seen time in the outfield and some evaluators feel he’s athletic enough to play second base, although he hasn’t played second base as a pro.

2020 and Beyond: What position Varsho will become a future regular at is unknown, one thing we do know is Varsho can flat out hit with an excellent power-speed combo. He will more than likely start the season at AAA with a chance to make it to the majors before the end of the season. If he can develop into a super utility player that can still hit for a good average he could be a really special player in the future as he has the potential to be a good hitter that garners plenty of value due to his ability to play catcher, outfield, and maybe even second base.

2019 Hit Streak: 10 (5/1-5/14) 17-41 (.415), with 4 doubles and a home run

2019 Best Game: 8/21/19 vs. Tennessee 4-4, with a double, home run and 2 RBI

2019 Splits: vs. RH: .312/.382/.609 vs. LH: .277/.371/.338  Fielding%: .991


AA: Geraldo Perdomo, SS, Jackson Generals 

Signed by the Arizona Diamondbacks out of the Dominican Republic in 2016. Perdomo was an underrated prospect when he first signed but he’s quickly made a name for himself. In 2019 he made it all the way from Low A up to High A while hitting .275 with 26 stolen bases. He continued to impress during his time in the Arizona Fall League where despite being one of the youngest players he impressed enough to make the Fall Stars roster, and also earned a trip to his first big league spring training camp this year.

Age: 20 Size: 6’3”,184  Bats: S Throws: R ETA: 2022

Hitting: A switch hitting shortstop with an excellent approach at the plate that’s shown the ability to be a very good contact hitter. He’s drawn more walks than strikeouts throughout his young career. Although Perdomo hasn’t shown much if any in game power at the moment, Scouts and Evaluators feel that he still does have a chance to develop average power in time thanks to his size and strength, and He currently shows more power from the left side than the right  side at the moment. Perdomo has also shown good bat speed with the ability to hit to all fields giving him the chance to develop into an above average or better hitter to go along with plus speed on the bases.

Fielding: A plus defender with a plus arm that should allow him to make all the plays at shortstop. Perdomo is one of the best defensive shortstops in the minors and he might someday be a future Gold Glover. Scouts and Evaluators have no doubt that Perdomo will stay at shortstop.

Future: Perdomo will more than likely start the season at either High A or AA. Either way Perdomo has the talent to make it to the majors in the next year or two. It will be iFor now Perdomo looks to be a solid major leaguer with the upside to be a Future Star if he can develop more power to go along with his already plus defensive ability.

2019 Hit Streak: 11 (8/4-8/17) 16-37 (.432), with 4 doubles

2019 Best Game: 4/20/19 @ Quad Cities 3-4, with a double, home run and 3 RBI

2019 Splits: vs. RH: .271/.400/.363 vs. LH: .291/.387/.367  Fielding%: .967


A+: Alek Thomas, OF, Visalia Rawhide

2018 2nd Round Draft Pick of the Arizona Diamondbacks. Alek Thomas is the son of the White  Sox strength coach Allen Thomas and so Alek got a chance to grow up around the game and it showed in his first full season. He won the Midwest League MVP and also made it to the Futures Game before being promoted to High A before the end of the season. While at High A he helped Visalia to win the California League championship with a walk off base hit in the deciding game. He finished as a top 10 prospect in the Midwest League according to Baseball America.

Age: 19 Size: 5’11”, 175 Bats: L Throws: L ETA: 2022

Hitting: Thomas is an advanced hitter for his age and he has all the talent to develop into a plus hitter in time. He has an all fields approach, and a  nice compact swing that allows him to barrels balls well leading to plenty of extra bases with a chance to have sneaky pop that could lead to more home runs than most would expect. He has plus speed that plays well on the bases.

Fielding: Thanks to his plus speed, good instincts, and ability to get good reads and jumps, he looks to be a plus defender in centerfield where his below average arm would play well.

2020 and Beyond: Thomas is one of the more polished prep players in his class despite being one of the youngest. He will more than likely start the season back in High A with a chance to make it to AA at the age of 20. He has plenty of upside and already knows how to be a pro thanks to his plus makeup and he’s willing to put in the work. 

2019 Hit Streak: 12 (5/22-6/5) 20-49 (.408), with 7 doubles and 2 HR

2019 Best Game: 7/3/19 @ Peoria 4-4, HIT FOR THE CYCLE with 2 RBI

2019 Splits: vs. RH: .305/.383/.472 vs. LH: .271/.363/.329  Fielding%: .991


A-: Kristian Robinson, OF, Kane County Cougars

Signed by the Arizona Diamondbacks out of the Bahamas in 2017. In 2018 it was thought that Kristian Robinson might start in the Dominican Summer League but he impressed Arizona enough to start his career in the Arizona League where he impressed enough to make it to rookie advanced. In 2019 he started his season off in the short season Northwest League where he impressed scouts and evaluators enough to be considered the top prospect in the league according to Baseball America.

Age: 19 Size: 6’3”, 190 Bats: R Throws: R ETA: 2022

Hitting: Robinson is an impressive hitter with incredible power for his age. He is considered to have double plus raw power and if you’ve ever seen him hit a homerun it’s something special, especially for his age. It would not be surprising if he ends up as one of the top power hitters in baseball one day. He’s a raw hitter but quite impressive for his age as he does a lot of little things well which allows evaluators to believe he could develop into an above average hitter. He shows the ability to make adjustments and has more of an all fields approach with above average or better speed. 

Fielding: Robinson is an above  average or better defensive center fielder that gets good reads and jumps on the ball. He also has a solid arm with good accuracy on his throws. 

2020 and Beyond: Robinson should start the season at Low A with the chance to make it to AA before the end of the season. He will typically display 3 to 5 above average to plus tools regularly and could end up being the first major star from the Bahamas. He looks to be a special talent, one that already has some scouts comparing him to Ronald Acuna Jr.

2019 Hit Streak: 7 (7/14-7/21) 9-26 (.346), with 2 doubles and 2 HR

2019 Best Game: 7/23/19 vs. Salem-Keizer 3-4, with a HR, 4 RBI, and 2 stolen bases

2019 Splits: vs. RH: .265/.349/.490 vs. LH: .353/.441/.608  Fielding%: .971


2019 1st round pick: Corbin Carroll, OF, Kane County Cougars

2019 1st Round Draft Pick of the Arizona Diamondbacks selected with the 16th overall pick out of Lakeside HS (WA). Corbin Carroll hit everywhere he played throughout the summer showcase circuit winning the Perfect Game All-American Game MVP, and he continued to perform well his senior season which allowed him to become a first round pick. In fact if it weren’t for some teams concerns about his size he could have possibly been a top 10 overall pick. As a pro Carroll did not disappoint as he was a top 5 prospect in the Arizona League according to Baseball America, and he even earned a promotion to the Northwest League where he helped Hillsboro win the championship while compiling even better stats against even more advanced competition.

Age: 19 Size: 5’10, 165 Bats: L Throws: L ETA: 2023

Hitting: Corbin was one of the more advanced bats among all prep hitters in his draft class. He has an all fields approach to go along with a good knowledge of the strike zone which helps scouts to give him a future plus hit grade. He has a patient approach and good knowledge  of the strike zone which allows him to draw plenty of walks and when he’s on base he uses his plus to double plus speed to wreak havoc on the bases. He also projects to have average or better power.

Fielding: Scouting directors voted Carroll as the best prep defender in his draft class in the preseason before his senior year. He has great speed which allows him to cover plenty of ground in centerfield. His arm isn’t the best but it plays better due to the accuracy on his throws. 

2020 and Beyond: Corbin Carroll earns plenty of praise for his makeup and baseball IQ and his game reminds some of a young Jacoby Ellsbury or Andrew Benintendi. He will more than likely  start the season at Low A. Due to his advanced skills and maturity he could move faster than most of the other prep players in his class.

2019 Hit Streak: 12 (7/31-8/15) 16-49 (.327), with 3 doubles and 4 triples

2019 Best Game: 7/21/19 vs. AZL Athletics 3-3, with a double, 3 stolen bases and 3 RBI

2019 Splits: vs. RH: .291/.399/.480 vs. LH: .333/.455/.519  Fielding%: .952


2019 Kane County Cougars that stood out

Levi Kelly, RHP, Arizona Diamondbacks 

Matt Tabor, RHP, Arizona Diamondbacks 

Luis Frias, RHP, Arizona Diamondbacks 

Blaze Alexander, SS, Arizona Diamondbacks 

Buddy Kennedy, 3B, Arizona Diamondbacks 

Dominic Fletcher, OF, Arizona Diamondbacks 


2019 Top Draft Picks 

Blake Walston, LHP, Arizona Diamondbacks 

Drey Jameson, RHP, Arizona Diamondbacks 

Ryne Nelson, RHP, Arizona Diamondbacks 

Tommy Henry, LHP, Arizona Diamondbacks 

Dominic Fletcher, OF, Arizona Diamondbacks 

Tristin English, 1B, Arizona Diamondbacks 

James Weisser has been following prospects since 2003, when the Florida Marlins won the world series with players like Josh Beckett, Miguel Cabrera, and Dontrelle Willis. He has seen MVP's, Cy Young Winners, and All-Stars before they ever played in the majors, and is an avid college baseball fan who enjoys watching the SEC and ACC in the spring when often times the cold, wet weather of the Midwest allows him to follow some of the top players in both conferences. He also enjoys following/covering the Midwest League which is often players first full-season level. He also watches some of the top amateur talent that comes through Chicago and the Midwest like the Under Armour All-America game at Wrigley Field which features some of the top incoming seniors for the following year as well as the 17U Team USA which features some of the top juniors in the country. He currently resides in McHenry, Illinois which is located within an hour from the Beloit Snappers and Kane County Cougars which allows him to see 4 or more organizations Low A teams in a week at times. A White Sox fan growing up one of his favorite moments was watching them win the World Series in 2005. A few of his all-time favorite players to watch are Frank Thomas, Albert Pujols, Derek Jeter, Ryan Howard, Clayton Kershaw, Barry Bonds, Mike Trout, and Ken Griffey Jr.

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