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Monday, February 4, 2013
Dodgers' system ranked No. 18 by Keith Law

By Mark Saxon

Keith Law ranks all 30 farm systems today at ESPN.com and the Dodgers don't fare particularly well.

Law puts them at No. 18, ahead of just 12 clubs, and writes, "They are a little underrepresented in the top 100, but with a lot of guys who'd either be in the next 50 or who could jump into the top 50 next year. That group is led by Yasiel Puig, who barely played in 2013 before surgery to address a staph infection kept him out of the Arizona Fall League."

Puig also was the Dodgers' top prospect in the Baseball Prospectus rankings, with Hyun-jin Ryu ranked No. 1 by Baseball America (BP doesn't consider Ryu a "prospect" after seven years in Korean pro ball).

Puig played 23 games last year between rookie ball and Single-A Rancho Cucamonga, batting .354 with a big .634 slugging percentage and .442 OBP. After recovering from the staph infection, Puig played 20 games in the Puerto Rican winter league, batting .232 with a home run and nine RBIs. The Dodgers should have a pretty good read on Puig (who cost them $42 million last June) by June or July as he figures to start the 2013 season at Double-A Chattanooga.

As Law points out, the Dodgers' system could improve fairly dramatically in coming seasons. Some of their top prospects are the result of recent drafts and the team has been quietly spending tons of money in international markets to reload a system depleted by Frank McCourt's thriftiness.

So, in a way, No. 18 isn't so bad.