Skip to main content

Prospect Nation 2014: #5 OF Kelly Dugan

Add caption
It took Kelly Dugan about four years to show and prove why he was once the Phillies' top draft choice (2nd round, 2009). An excellent campaign in 2013 has many believing that the young outfielder could be close to helping the team at the big league level.

Much hype surrounded Kelly upon being drafted to the Phillies, as an image of him on the set of his director father Dennis Dugan's film Grown Ups, with many of Hollywood's comedy elite, made the rounds. In the years that followed, Dugan dealt with a series of injury concerns that kept the 6-foot-3-inch 195-pounder from fully establishing himself as a potential rising star.

Dugan would debut with the Gulf Coast League Phillies in 2009, after signing his first professional contract, posting a .233 average with eight doubles, a triple and eight RBI in 45 games. The following year, with the GCL team and short-season Class A Williamsport, Dugan sported a .366 average with a homer and eight RBI in 28 combined games. He missed roughly two months of action that year after he was hit in the leg with a batted ball during batting practice in June and later developed a staph infection that required draining.

In 2011, Dugan returned to Williamsport and represented the club in the New York-Penn League All-Star Game. With the Crosscutters, in 47 games, he sported a .284 batting average along with two home runs and 21 RBI.

With Lakewood the following season, after missing time with a severely sprained ankle, Dugan displayed improved power and steady production, as he notched a .300 batting average, 12 homers and 60 RBI in 117 games. Additionally, his OPS, at .857, was .127 points higher than his mark from the previous season, which was a major plus.

Last season, Dugan made a big splash in the Class A Advanced Florida State league, as he posted a .318 average with 12 doubles, three triples, 10 home runs and 36 RBI in 56 games. With that excellent production, the Phils moved Dugan up a level to Double-A Reading. There, in 56 contests, Dugan tallied a .264 average with 12 doubles, a triple, 10 homers and 23 RBI.

A drastic drop in walk rate between the two levels (9.7% to 2.2%) last year was quite concerning, but Dugan typically doesn't struggle with being selective, so this should not turn into a trend that continues.

While the 2013 regular season seemed to be mostly injury free for Dugan, he missed out on participating in the Arizona Fall League after dealing with turf toe.

A refined approach at the plate a couple years back was a big reason for the strides Dugan has taken on offense. Making the choice without consulting the Phillies, Dugan ended an experiment to develop an ability to switch-hit and began hitting strictly from his natural side as a lefty batter.

At the plate, the Encino, CA native, is confident and consistent. He loves hitting. Dugan, who has great bat speed, has shown abilities to drive the ball well and hit the other way. Making contact is an area where the Phils will want to see Dugan make improvement, as he posted a strike out rate of 24.1% at two levels last year.

In order to ensure improvements during the winter months, Dugan spends time over the off-season privately working on his hitting with seven-time big league All-Star Reggie Smith in batting cages at the Dugan family home.

In 2012, concerns with Dugan's hamstring during the preseason and then an ankle sprain in April had the youngster resigned to manning first base for the BlueClaws. Once he was fully healthy, however, Dugan moved back to the outfield, where he feels most comfortable. With Reading last year, Dugan, who has a strong, accurate arm, split his time evenly between left field and right field, but he has played about five times as many in right field during his career.

The 23-year-old displays average speed on the bases, but has a strong ability to read balls off the bat and get solid jumps on fly balls while on defense in the outfield. Dugan, who is currently participating in his first big league spring training, is not a stolen base threat, as he was successful in one of five opportunities last season and sports a 66% success rate in steal attempts during his pro career.

In the coming season, Dugan should see time with the Triple-A Lehigh Valley IronPigs, although it's likely he'll return to Reading for opening day. If he continues the solid progress with his bat and stays off the disabled list, Dugan could be helping the big league team before too long.

Click here to view the running list of this year's countdown.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

2022 Top Phillies Prospects Countdown: #13 OF Ethan Wilson

Taken with the Phillies' second round draft pick (49th overall) last year, outfielder Ethan Wilson has landed among the top prospects in the organization. A co-freshman of the year in 2019, with South Alabama, Wilson has been on the radar of some big league teams for quite a while.  In his junior season last year, Wilson batted .313 with seven home runs and 30 RBI.  When his collegiate season was through, the lefty hitter quickly debuted in the minors.   In 30 games with Class A Clearwater last year, Wilson tallied a .215 average with three homers, 17 RBI and two steals. Listed at six-foot-one, 210-pounds, Wilson opened the 2022 campaign with Class A Advanced Jersey Shore.  The 22-year-old has been slow to start offensively, but confidence and poise are not a problem for this strong, promising individual. On the base paths, Wilson is quick and can contribute with his feet.  Defensively, the Alabama native will likely play left or right field moving forward.  Possessing an ability t

Who is Your Favorite Willie 'Mays' Hayes?

PhoulBallz.com is wondering which individual who has portrayed Willie "Mays" Hayes is the favorite of the public. Hayes, of course, is the character made famous in the Major League motion picture series. In Major League , Willie "Mays" Hayes was portrayed by budding Hollywood actor Wesley Snipes, who would go on to action movie superstardom. Snipes has starred in major motion pictures like the Blade trilogy, Passenger 57 , Undisputed and many more. Snipes remains an impact Hollywood actor, despite legal troubles related to income tax evasion. Snipes was replaced for the sequel, Major League II when his busy career, and possibly the film's budget, would not allow him to return, by Omar Epps. Another budding actor, Epps had previously worked with director David S. Ward, on the film The Program , and landed the role of Hayes, who had become a Hollywood action star over the off-season that occured between the two films. Epps' career portraying athletes rolle

Prospect Nation 2012: #1 RHP Trevor May

With a massively impressive campaign in 2011 for the Class A Advanced Clearwater Threshers, right-handed starting pitcher Trevor May locked down his spot as Philadelphia's top prospect and is on the fast track toward the big leagues. He is the reigning Paul Owens Award winner, given to the top pitcher and player in the Phillies' developmental system each year. In 27 starts with the Threshers in 2011, May posted a 10-8 record with a 3.63 ERA, while striking out a Florida State League leading 208 batters in 151 1/3 innings. He also held opposing hitters to a .221 average. The Phillies' 4th round draft pick from 2008, May earned the win in the 50th annual Florida State League All-Star Game at Bright House Field last year. He also was twice named FSL Pitcher of the Week and earned Phillies Minor League Pitcher of the Month honors for June. After signing with Philadelphia, May helped lead the rookie level Gulf Coast League Phillies to a championship in 2008. In 5 regular