7. Yusniel Diaz, Left Field
Yusniel Diaz is one of the Dodgers international signings that is really interesting. At only 20-years old, he signed as a Cuban defector in 2015 and has performed at a rather average rate to start his career in the U.S.A. In his first two seasons, he owns a .266/.335/.383 slash rate with five stolen bases and five home runs.
Diaz is by no means one of the power-hitting Cuban prospect that we’ve come accustomed to seeing, but rather a more well-rounded player. Diaz has shown bright flashes of physical tools, but at the same time still, struggles to adapt to the game from an American level.
He battled some shoulder injuries last season, so he’s still not been given the full sample size to grade him off of.
Diaz hitting lower in the order allows him to utilize his speed and focus on contact rather than driving in runners. Diaz’s speed allows him to fit in perfectly at left field with Verdugo at center until he further adapts to the style of play.
Diaz is still very raw and young so to expect him in a starting role with the Dodgers at the 2019 season may be a bit of a stretch. But that’s not to say it’s improbable. If Diaz is not able to make the club by this timeline, the Dodgers still have the likes of DJ Peters, Mitchell Hansen, and recently drafted Jeren Kendall.