We’re proud to include a photo here of Diego Cartaya cooking dinner with an American family mid-pandemic. Don’t often get the chance to include stock photos that are this confusing.
Bizarre, context-less cooking imagery aside, Cartaya is in the midst of the breakout season many saw coming when they began ranking him in the upper echelon of Dodgers prospects. Considering the astounding depth the team has at the position at all levels, the time will come where the organization must either convert him, choose him over several more experienced options, or trade him as part of a massive haul.
This July 30, though, will not be that day of reckoning. It cannot be.
Cartaya’s one of those edge cases where it was very easy to hear rumors of his breakout in 2021, question them (“How could he really be that hot?”), then check the stats and quickly learn that you were, in fact, the fool. At the age of 19 in Rancho Cucamonga, he’s OPSing 1.023 with 10 bombs, 31 RBI and a .409 OBP in just 31 games. This is his first taste of full-season ball of any kind, and 2019 was his only previous year in the professional ranks.
He is19 years old and he’s exactly the kind of player other teams try to kindly take off your hands at the deadline to clear up a logjam. “Oh, you’ve got Will Smith, Keibert Ruiz and Austin Barnes? That’s a shame. Wouldn’t want to add another log to that fire. Better give us Cartaya.”
The Dodgers know what they’re doing, though. They’re not the Pirates. Won’t happen. But speaking of catching depth…