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The arrival of the offseason means that it's time to rank stuff. Already this winter, we've sized up the 60 best free agents, both on an overall and positional basis. There's no law that prevents us from ranking minor-league players in addition to their big-league counterparts. As such, we're going to spend the winter evaluating every team's farm system. 

The lack of a minor-league season makes that more of a challenge this year. It doesn't help that some teams opted against sharing video and data from their alternate-site camps with the rest of the league. As such, we've opted against overthinking this. Our rankings will essentially be the same as they were last winter with a few changes. First, we'll exclude anyone who graduated by exhausting their rookie eligibility; second, we'll replace them with draftees or other worthy prospects; and third, and lastly, we'll present the information in a new format.

In every article in this series, you'll find a team's top five prospects as well as five others we felt like including, either because of their promise or some other reason. For those top five prospects, you'll find a quick summation of their pros (their saving grace, if one will) and their cons (their fault line), as well as beefier report and our attempt to peg their "likeliest outcome."

These rankings were compiled by talking to industry folks -- scouts, analysts, and other evaluators -- and include a touch of our own evaluative biases. Remember, that this is more of an art than a science, and that the write-ups matter more than the rankings themselves.

Now, let's get on to the top five prospects in the Los Angeles Dodgers system.

1. Keibert Ruiz, C

Age (as of 4/1/2021): 22

Height/Weight: 6-foot, 225 pounds

Acquired: International amateur free-agent signing (Venezuela)

Highest level: MLB

Saving grace: Hit tool

Fault line: Conventionality

Scouting report: Ruiz has one of the odder profiles you'll see at any position, let alone backstop. He's an extreme contact hitter who has fanned in less than 10 percent of his plate appearances dating back to 2018. Those impressive bat-to-ball skills form the backbone of his game. Ruiz does have average raw power, though it hasn't often shown up in games. There's a real chance he's a singles-heavy hitter who's average or better behind the plate. That should be enough to start, and, more trivially, to stand out among the crowd.  

Likeliest outcome: Starting catcher

2. Josiah Gray, RHP

Age (as of 4/1/2021): 23

Height/Weight: 6-foot-1, 190 pounds

Acquired: Part of the Yasiel Puig trade (Reds)

Highest level: Double-A

Saving grace: Athleticism 

Fault line: Experience

Scouting report: Gray barely pitched until his junior year at Le Moyne. Once he showed promise with the Reds in rookie ball, the Dodgers quickly pounced on him, adding him in a multi-player deal. Gray has since progressed into a legitimate rotation option, and one who could debut in 2021. He has a promising three-pitch mix and more control than you'd expect from someone still relatively new to the craft. It's at least possible that Gray continues to make strides, even as he gets into his mid-20s, because of his athleticism and his circumstances. 

Likeliest outcome: Mid-rotation starter

3. Diego Cartaya, C

Age (as of 4/1/2021): 19

Height/Weight: 6-foot-2, 199 pounds

Acquired: International amateur free-agent signing (Venezuela)

Highest level: Rookie ball

Saving grace: Bat, arm

Fault line: Young catchers

Scouting report: Anytime there's a promising young catcher, you have to take note. Cartaya qualifies. He has a chance at becoming an above-average hitter and thrower, as evidenced by his .281/.343/.432 slash line in his professional debut. At the same time, young catchers seem to flame out as frequently as young pitchers, meaning he has a long, long road ahead of him. Should Cartaya show signs of developing as desired, he'll continue to be a fixture on this list.

Likeliest outcome: Regular catcher, maybe

4. Kody Hoese, 3B

Age (as of 4/1/2021): 23

Height/Weight: 6-foot-4, 200 pounds

Acquired: No. 25 pick in the 2019 draft (Tulane)

Highest level: Single-A

Saving grace: Bat

Fault line: Lacking upside

Scouting report: Hoese improved his stock over the year leading up to the draft with a solid showing in the Cape Cod League then a breakout junior season at Tulane -- he homered 23 times and walked five more times than he struck out. Despite those numbers, Hoese projects to be more of an average to slightly above average hitter than an impact-level monster. Provided he can stick at third base, that ought to be enough for him to become a regular.

Likeliest outcome: Second-division starter

5. Clayton Beeter, RHP

Age (as of 4/1/2021): 22

Height/Weight: 6-foot-2, 220 pounds

Acquired: Second-round pick in the 2020 draft (Texas Tech)

Highest level: NCAA

Saving grace: Spin rates

Fault line: Track record

Scouting report: This is probably an overaggressive rank, but you live and you learn. Beeter has above-average stuff, including a curveball that would be elite among big-league pitchers. The reason he was available to the Dodgers so late in the draft is because of his shaky track record. He spent his 2019 in relief with the Red Raiders, walking nearly a batter per inning. Beeter was much better in four starts in 2020, but his arm gets up late frequently enough in his delivery to envision him always having below-average command.

Likeliest outcome: Mid-rotation starter or late-inning reliever

Five others to know

  • Bobby Miller, RHP

The Dodgers drafted Miller with their first selection in June's draft. He has a strong frame, a firm fastball, and a pair of average or better secondaries. His delivery features an extremely long arm swing, which could impact his command and force him into a setup role.

The Dodgers popped Busch with the 31st pick in the 2019 draft. They've since tinkered with him at both right-side infield positions, including playing him almost exclusively at first during the Arizona Fall League. He's not going to deposit many checks because of his glove no matter where he ends up; rather, the selling point here is with his potentially above-average stick.

Carrillo is a small, cunning right-hander who imparts impressive spin on his pitches. There is significant relief risk because of his delivery and his size, but that hasn't stopped other teams from asking about him in trade talks for the past few years.

Peters is listed at 6-foot-6, 225 pounds. He has big-time power and enough speed and arm strength to see action in center field. Yet there's a chance he's just a Quad-A or bench type because of his strikeout tendencies. He's consistently punched out in more than 30 percent of his trips to the plate -- to the extent that his 29.4 percent strikeout rate in 2019 represented an improvement. Peters ought to make his big-league debut in 2021.

The Dodgers added Williams in the Ross Stripling trade. He has the size and stuff to start and, knowing the Dodgers, he'll probably make a big leap forward after spending time with their development staff.