The team packed plenty of offensive punch, with a .712 OPS and scoring 269 runs. The pitching was solid, posting a 4.29 ERA and allowing only 251 runs over the 2023 season. Let’s take a look at some of the players who stood out.
Filippo Di Turi
Di Turi was one of the top signees of the Brewers’ international free agent class, and split time between shortstop and second base. Di Turi posted a solid batting average over the season, and stole 12 bases in 20 attempts, but where he really stood out was in getting on base – posting a .414 OBP and 38 walks, while striking out only 32 times in 181 at-bats. Di Turi will likely be seeing time in Arizona next year.
Ibarguen didn’t get a lot of talk when he signed, but the .884 OPS said a lot over the season. He hit for average (.311), displayed some power (11 extra-base hits out of 41 total hits) across 132 at-bats. He walked 25 times and struck out 32 times. Ibarguen spent time at second base, third base, and all three outfield positions and spent 16 games as DH. That’s bench player versatility.
Eric Martinez spent a third year in the DSL despite posting an OPS of .804 in 2022, and this year, there was some offensive regression, but also some improvement on defense. His bat flashed a ton of power (12 out of 27 hits went for extra bases), sharing the team lead in home runs with five. He should finally make it to Maryvale next year.
Yes, the Brewers have Tyler Black, Luke Adams. Brock Wilken, Mike Boeve, and Eric Bitonti at third base in the minors, but Nadal arguably is on par with these players. He posted a 1.003 OPS in 120 at-bats, delivered 13 extra-base hits including five triples, adding 33 stolen bases, and walked more than he struck out. Nadal played second base, third base, shortstop, left field, and center field as well, offering a lot of versatility to the speed, power, and OBP skills.
Here’s a potential candidate for the 2024 “Overlooked Brewers Prospect” team. The numbers for Vasquez look eerily like some of the lines you’d see from Russell Branyan – who was Mr. 3TO in two stints with the Brewers. In 74 at-bats, Vasquez drew 11 walks and hit five home runs while seeing action in about half the team’s games. Like Branyan, he did rack up a ton of strikeouts – 38 of them. The power at such a young age is very intriguing, and it says a LOT about the depth in the farm system that he could be overlooked.
Hernandez was one of two pitching prospects focused on earlier this month. With the end of the DSL season, it is clear that he was undeniably the ace of the squad. He went 2-2 with a 2.06 ERA in 35 inning pitched across ten appearances (seven starts), and gave up just one home run all season. He allowed only nine walks all season and struck out 30 hitters despite not turning 17 until July 3. He could easily be in Maryvale come 2024.
Hernandez’s breakout obscured fellow Brewers Dos starter Rivera’s development into a workhorse. Rivera posted a solid 2-2 record and 3.57 ERA in 53 innings pitched over a dozen starts. His 1.113 WHIP was lower than Hernandez’s, but he did allow five home runs over the season, and walked more than twice as many hitters. However, he flashed the ability to overpower hitters, striking out 63 of the 213 batters he faced.
The DSL Brewers 2 squad’s record doesn’t show just how many players on this team stood out. Whether it was young phenoms like Hernandez and Di Turi, or solid workhorses like Rivera and Martinez, this squad has plenty of players who should make an impact in the Brewers farm system in the next few years.
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