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Kyle Russell – Dunn or Deer?

Kyle Russell – Dunn or Deer?

When I think of Dodger Prospect Kyle Russell, two names come to mind – Adam Dunn and Rob Deer.  Both have (had) prodigious power and both strike (“struck” in Deer’s situation) out way too much, but Dunn actually has a good OB%, albeit a low BA.  Both can hit monster HR’s.  Both made the majors, but only one (Dunn) was a success.  Will Kyle Russell be like either player?  Only time will tell, but Russell who was the third Dodgers pick of 2008, has always exhibited tremendous raw power.  The Houston, Texas native is a left-handed power hitter  who stands  6’5″ and weighs 200 lbs., at age 21.  There have been a lot of players over the years who have played for the University of Texas, but Kyle Russell is the All-Time Home Run King and holds the Texas HR record. 

KyleRussellHe is currently playing for the Great Lakes Loons (Low Class A) and is hitting .281 (.369 OB%) and OPS’ing  .938.  He has 25 doubles, 19 HR and 59 RBI in 81 games.  He has also swiped 6 out of 7 bases and has 40 BB to go with (GULP!) 105 Strike-Outs.  That’s right, in 299 AB’s he has struck out 105 times!  Before you pass judgement, you need to realize that 40 BB for a young slugger is a step in the right direction, but the fact that he is on track for 200 strike outs gives one pause.  He does possess excellent hand speed and obviously his pitch recognition needs some improvement, but you don’t teach “raw power.”  He has played some CF, but is most suited for RF.  He has slightly above average speed and possess an excellent arm. 

At the plate, he does a great job of keeping his hands back and driving the ball to all fields. He seems to have a  good understanding of hitting and frequently takes the ball to the opposite field, because he has the power to hit home runs anywhere in the ballpark.  He can kill any fastball, but like many youngsters who are power hitters he struggles with the breaking and off-speed stuff.  This is something that can be learned, however. 

I think he will see a promotion to Inland Empire before the end of the season and could easily be in AA by the end of next season.  His projected arrival to the big show is probably sometime in 2011.  It all depends upon whether he can continue to adapt.


Clayton Kershaw vs. Mike Pelfrey tonight.

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When you see the invisible, you can do the impossible!

20 Responses to “Kyle Russell – Dunn or Deer?”

  1. Badger says:

    I am not as concerned about K’s as I am excited about power and OBP. (keep it at .369 at every level and he will make it) An Adam Dunn with a little speed? I would take that in a heartbeat.

    Could be he is adjusting to a wood bat and pro ball. Playing everday against quality pitching takes some getting used to. 2 years in the minors before he makes his debut? Okey doke.

  2. Blue Haze says:

    Does Kyle Russell get “soft” hits or clutch hits? That really is the only question, isn’t it?

  3. Badger says:

    Good point Haze, and one I hadn’t considered. I am assuming any strike-out is soft, so what if all his home runs come when the team is ahead? This is important to know.

  4. lawdog says:

    A pretty good indicator–just check his total rbis, hits, total hrs, total triples ands total ABs

  5. lawdog says:

    How do you calculate a players RISP?

  6. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    I won’t pass judgment on a player I’ve never seen, and one who could take well to coaching, and have the light go on. But Dunn did not strike out nearly as much as Russell early in his career, and at a younger age. It appears that Dunn was drafted out of high school, not college.–001ada

    It remains to be seen how Russell develops.

  7. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    A little while ago it started raining heavily here in NY. The forecast is for scattered thunderstorms, which I believe will be ended by the time the game starts. However, the rain that is currently falling is likely to leave the outfield grass wet, so I suspect that Manny may not start the game. Only a guess.

    In the meantime, I will heading off to Citi Field, wearing Dodger Blue together with some of my Met fan friends (who will not be wearing Dodger Blue, but hopefully, will protect me). Actually, most Met fans are civil, so I don’t expect anything to happen. In the event that it does, one of my friends is an attorney. Of course, I’d probably be better off if he was a cop.

  8. Buddy says:

    On another note, take a look at the injury analysis work Steve Conte, the Dodgers’ trainer is attempting to promote and apply. It’s in today’s NY Times. The irony of this article is that Torre’s overuse of bullpens leads to injury risks in and of itself.

  9. Ken says:

    Hopefully he will be better than Chris Davis

  10. Badger says:

    Interesting article.

    Here’s another one I just read on a different topic. Notice anon’s response to it…..

    Personally I have always been a guy who stressed OBP. That to me is the most important stat of all. Get on base and good things happen. If you don’t make an out, you are helping your team immensely, even if you don’t hit home runs, have a high sluging % or bat .300.

    ldawg – I don’t know if you are serious with your question, but in case you are RISP stands for runners in scoring position. WRISP is “with runners in scoring position”. It is simply – what is a batters average with runners on second, third, or second and third.

  11. lawdog says:

    I knew what it stood for Badger, I just don’t see how you can calculate it without going back and checking every game. Maybe you can’t. Maybe it’s something you have to calculate daily for all the players and change it daily when each player plays.. That would be a real kick in the ass if you had to do that.

  12. Bill Russell says:

    Halliday on the trade market. What are the possibilities? Kemp and McDonald? Ethier and McDonald? Pierre and McDonald with the Dodgers picking up half of Pierres salary. What’s your ideas?????
    Or do you say NO INTEREST PERIOD?????

  13. Blue Haze says:

    I don’t see how any of this applies to Michael Jackson, so all other conversation must halt on the King of Pop Day (you know what, it wouldn’t surprise me if we one day see a Michael Jackson Day).

    Okay, just kidding!

    I don’t think that Halliday will go that cheap, they are going to want a lot of prospects as well. I think the Dodgers would be willing to move Ethier before they part with Kemp.

  14. Bill Russell says:

    Mark, would you give up Lambo, K Russell and McDonald for Halliday?

  15. Badger says:

    We need Kemp and McDonald. I would rather we traded some minor leaguers for Braden, Lannan or Bergesen (another California boy)

  16. Ken says:

    That is what I have been saying. Trade for Lannan. Either keep him as an inexpensive replacement for Wolf next year or bundle him with other players for an Ace.

    Only Maddux would have gotten that pitch to Manny called a strike.

  17. Ken says:

    So Torre finally decides to use McDonald because he blew out Belisario’s arm?

    Who is next to be injured by Mohawk?

  18. Michael says:

    Will Jerry Manuel have a job tommorow? I will give young Clayton an A with a perfect sac bunt that resulted in 2 runs and his curve working. In all fairness, with all of their injuries, this was like playing a double A team. There is no reason that we shouldn’t sweep these mutts and put Manuel out of his misery.

  19. Bill Russell says:

    Was that a soft Homerun hit by Blake DeWitt? We already had a big lead. Nice win tonight. What was the Umpire looking at on Manny’s called third strikes (both times)? Kershaw looked great.

  20. Badger says:

    Man, that was one bogus call on Manny. That wasn’t close, Manny gets thrown – and what happens to the blue? Nothin’. What they forget is that no one comes to that park to see them. NO ONE. Keep your cool, recognize you blew it, allow the player the heat of the moment and move on. They get pissed for someone “showing them up”. Hey, you just showed the player up. You blew it. You gotta be able to take some heat for it too. And I am a former pro ump.

    Yep, soft HR by DeWitt. Meaningless. ‘cept to him of course.

    Kershaw another 100+ pitches to get through 6. He is consistent, I’ll give him that. The kid has great stuff. I look forward to the day he becomes a real pro and throws that stuff for strikes. He will be something very special.


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