Joc Pederson: Slumping in the Dominican Winter Leagues


Joc Pederson: Slumping in the Dominican Winter Leagues.

After a long 140 game season in the minors for the Dodger’s top prospects, many of the young future stars toil in the off-season winter leagues honing their basic skills.  This winter, Joc Pederson, who spent the season in Albuquerque, is playing in the Dominican Winter league for Leones Del Escogido.

Selected by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 11th round of the 2010 First-Year Player Draft out of Palo Alto (California) High School, he was ranked as Dodgers’ No. 2 prospect in 2014 and ranked No. 3 among Dodgers prospects by entering the 2013 season.  Pederson was named the Dodgers’ Branch Rickey Minor League Player of the Year in 2012 and ranked sixth in the California League in on-base percentage, eighth in batting and ninth in slugging percentage in 2012.

His father, Stu Pederson, was drafted by the Dodgers in 1981 and played in eight games in the Majors in 1985. His father also spent parts of three seasons with Triple-A Albuquerque (1985-87), the same team Pederson spent the majority of the 2014 season with. The elder Pederson appeared in 1,291 Minor League games over 12 years (1981-1992).

Joc Pederson became the fifth player in Albuquerque franchise history and first Pacific Coast League hitter since Terry Evans in 2009 to reach the 20/20 milestone of 20 homers and 20 stolen bases when he homered on 7/23/14 against Fresno.  He also became the second Minor Leaguer in 2014 to go 20/20, joining Nationals prospect Michael Taylor, who did it 7/20/14. And of course he became the fourth PCL hitter of all time to reach the 30/30 milestone. He hit the first grand slam of Albuquerque’s 2014 season, a go-ahead drive off Fresno’s Heath Hembree on 7/24/14.

Pederson’s offensive numbers seem to be lacking the pop he showed at AAA Albuquerque.  He is batting .260 with one home run and 6 RBIs in 50 at bats.  You will remember that Pederson also struggled after being called up to the Dodgers late in the season.  He batted .143 with 4 hits in 28 at bats for the big league team.

Pederson’s stats at AAA Albuquerque were outstanding. Joc slugged his way to a .303 average with 33 home runs and 78 RBIs.  I suspect that Joc is a little tired, and he deserves a little rest after the Dominican Winter Leagues come to an end in December.  We look forward to seeing Joc at Spring Training with the Dodgers in the Spring.