Junior Caminero, 3B, TAM

How does a teenager become known as one of baseball’s top prospects? Meet Junior Caminero.

Video courtesy of Baseball Is Everything
  • Born: July 5, 2003
  • B/T: Right/Right
  • 6’3″, 180-lbs
  • Signed by Cleveland in 2019 out of the Dominican Republic

The Numbers

His raw numbers are listed above courtesy of baseball-reference.com. Let’s aggregate by year then focus on the important numbers for minor leaguers:

We can mostly ignore his 2021 numbers as they came from the Dominican Summer League. About all we can say is he showed great power as a 17-year-old, and against sub-par competition he had good bat control.

He started 2022 at the Rookie league level in the States, and got on base crazy-good, and while he didn’t show the same level of power, he had enough as an 18-year-old. Good production and bat control. That really is the key for Junior Caminero since he is already on the corner infield defensive spectrum: he has power (27.7% Hard Hit rate this year), but without bringing great defense to the game, he needs to also show good bat control.

So let’s break down his Single-A plate appearances after he was promoted there in August:

In August he got on base well, showed OK power, didn’t strike out too much, took some walks.

In September he closed out his year in fine style with an OBP over .400, great power, even better strikeout rates, and still not great walk rates. When you are 18 going on 19, and you are hitting almost .300 at Single-A, you might not be tempted to draw walks. Just swing and get on base!

But as he climbs to the higher levels, and the pitching gets sharper, this is the key area to monitor. If he can keep that strikeout rate low, and if he can start drawing more walks, he could develop into a third baseman with BA as well as power. Otherwise he could become a power source with a BA that drags you down.

In Rookie ball against RHP he struck out 16% and walked 11%.

In Rookie ball against LHP he never struck out nor drew a walk in 22 plate appearances.

In Single-A against RHP he struck out 23% and walked 6%.

In Single-A against LHP he struck out 4% and walked 8%.

It’s a really good batter profile.

The Scouts


We need to see him in Double-A, but he’s young enough we wouldn’t expect to see him at Double-A yet. I mean, he just turned 19 and he was playing in Single-A against pitchers almost three years older than him on average.

Will he draw more walks as the pitching gets finer? We need to see that.


Otherwise this is what you look for in a prospect: he doesn’t strike out too much while hitting dingers and getting on base. What’s not to love?

The Rays traded for him, and they are usually a good judge of talent.

So it’s probably Double-A in 2023, and perhaps a taste of Triple-A, and then maybe the Majors by 2024 as a 20- or 21-year-old? Sounds good to me.

The key will be 2023. If he can keep those strikeouts low in Double-A — and especially if he can draw more walks — he will become a Top-100 talent on everybody’s lists.

NOTE: If you wonder why I have him at 6’3″ when Baseball-Ref says 5’11”, see this article.