After countless seasons under a strict budget, the Los Angeles Dodgers underwent a much-needed transformation in 2012 following their purchase by Guggenheim Baseball Management. Given the new ownership's endless bankroll, they became the biggest spender in the game seemingly overnight and implemented a “win-now” mentality.
However, the change in ownership also had a drastic impact on the team's already fringy farm system. Shortly before the July 31 trade deadline, the Dodgers dealt their first-round draft pick from 2008, right-hander Ethan Martin, to the Phillies in exchange for Hunter Pence.
And then later in the season, they traded another top pitching prospect, right-hander Allen Webster, to the Red Sox as part of the blockbuster deal that landed them Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett and Carl Crawford.
Although both of the aforementioned prospects flashed Nos. 2 or 3 starter upside, they were each regarded as somewhat expendable considering that the organization had selected a pitcher in the first round of each of the last five drafts.
Thankfully that streak came to end this past June when the Dodgers drafted prep infielder Corey Seager with the 18th-overall pick. Additionally, the organization made a big splash in the international market in late June when they signed Cuban defector Yasiel Puig to a massive seven-year, $42 million contract.
And even though their top-10 prospects has a vastly different look than it did at this time last year, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re without a solid crop of high-ceiling prospects, especially on the mound.