The Dominican Winter League held their annual draft on Wednesday night. The draft is for the rights to a player in the winter league and doesn’t necessarily mean that they player will ever play for that team. Of course, it’s likely that eventually they will. The Cincinnati Reds had two players selected in the draft this season. Outfielder Andy Sugilio and relief pitcher Aneurys Zabala were both selected.
In order to be eligible for the Dominican Winter League draft a player must have played in Low-A baseball or higher the previous minor league season and have been on a Low-A roster through August. There are six teams in the league and each team used 16 rounds. You can see the entire draft results at Lidom.com (the official website for the Dominican Winter League).
Andy Sugilio was selected in the 9th round by Leones del Escogido. The outfielder spent the entire year with the Dayton Dragons. Some of that time came on the disabled list for Sugilio, but when he was on the field it happened in a Dragons uniform. The 21-year-old outfielder played in 91 games. He racked up 387 plate appearances and hit .278/.308/.380 on the season.
The year didn’t get out the way he hoped, hitting the disabled list after just two games played. He didn’t return to the field for five weeks. To my eyes it seemed that his hamstring injury was still effecting his play on the field. Known to be one of the fastest players in the organization, he was still fast, but not as fast as he had been. Sugilio hit just .244 in May and June after coming off of the disabled list. After that, he picked up the production. In the remaining 58 games of the season he hit .292 for the Dragons.
In the 13th round of the draft the Gigantes del Cibao selected right handed reliever Aneurys Zabala. He began the year playing with the Great Lakes Loons in the Dodgers organization. The Reds acquired him via trade in the Dylan Floro transaction, along with James Marinan. Once Zabala joined the Reds he spent the rest of his time with the Dayton Dragons. Overall on the season he posted a 4.39 ERA in the Midwest League between his two stops. He had 34 walks (4 intentional) and 43 strikeouts in 53.1 innings pitched. During the year with Dayton he tied the stadium record for fastest pitch at 102 MPH with Hunter Greene and Aroldis Chapman (who did it on a rehab assignment).