The Dodgers made what many considered a salary dump trade last winter when they sent Yasiel Puig and Matt Kemp to the Reds. Josiah Gray is looking to make that deal look very good for LA.
Back in the winter, right before Christmas, the Dodgers’ angered a good portion of their fan base by shipping Yasiel Puig to the Cincinnati Reds in a deal that was considered a salary dump. The Dodgers also dealt Matt Kemp, Alex Wood, and Kyle Farmer away in return for two prospects and Homer Bailey.
The two prospects that came back in the deal were Jeter Downs and Josiah Gray. At the time of the trade, Jeter Downs was considered to be the best prospect of the two and considered a borderline top 100 prospect in baseball. The shortstop has had a good season in his own right, hitting 14 home runs for the Quakes so far while playing shortstop.
Josiah Gray started his season a level below Downs with the Great Lakes Loons, the mid-level Single-A affiliate of the Dodgers. All it took for Gray to get promoted to Rancho Cucamonga was five starts in which he posted a 1.93 ERA and 0.86 WHIP. He held the opposition to a .165 batting average against.
After being promoted to the Quakes, Gray has not slowed down one bit. In ten starts, Josiah has a perfect 5-0 record to go along with a 2.53 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP. He has still been stingy against the opposition holding them to a .224 batting average against. He has also recorded 67 strikeouts in just 53 plus innings with only 11 walks allowed.
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Gray will not turn twenty-two years old until December so he is on pace to hit the big leagues before turning twenty-four years old. Coming into the season he was the Dodgers’ 17th ranked prospect according to MLB.com and if he keeps this up he could find himself in the top ten when next year’s rankings come out.
The deal that was once viewed as a salary dump to try and land Bryce Harper, is now looking like quite the thievery for the Dodgers. Kemp has already been released, Alex Wood has been injured, and Yasiel Puig has had an average season with the Reds. Both Wood and Puig will also be free agents this coming off-season.
Now the Dodgers have another pitching prospect that seems to be loaded with potential in Josiah Gray. With the trade deadline coming up it will be interesting to see how Gray shapes Andrew Friedman’s thinking in terms of prospects.
The Dodgers may view prospects like Tony Gonsolin and Dennis Santana as being more expendable with Gray rising through the ranks. One thing is certain and that is that Josiah Gray looks like another top pitching prospect in the making.