Gavin Lux had already established himself in the top tier of Los Angeles Dodgers prospects by the time he was promoted to Triple-A Oklahoma City in late June.
But he reached new heights immediately upon joining the Oklahoma City Dodgers, slashing an absurd .531/.577/1.063 in his first 15 games there.
It came as little surprise, then, when Lux was named the Pacific Coast League player of the Month to honor his performance in July.
Lux wound up hitting .435 with a 1.355 on-base plus slugging percentage over 22 games and 108 plate appearances in July, which was beyond-ridiculous production for the 21-year-old middle infielder.
His performance ostensibly became a big reason why the Pittsburgh Pirates reportedly demanded Lux during unsuccessful trade talks for All-Star closer Felipe Vazquez.
The Dodgers made no secret that Lux was untouchable in discussions with teams before the July 31 trade deadline.
Lux was named to the top 30 prospects in Minor League Baseball in recent midseason prospect rankings from Baseball America, Baseball Prospectus and MLB Pipeline.
In 94 total games this season between OKC and Double-A Tulsa, where he started the year, Lux is batting .358/.430/.626, good for a 1.056 OPS.
Though shortstop is Lux’s natural position, his error-prone throwing arm and Corey Seager’s presence with the Dodgers have many convinced that Lux will primarily be a second baseman in the long term.
He has started in both spots throughout his professional career, including at Oklahoma City.
Lux was selected 20th overall in the 2016 MLB Draft, headlining a class that included current Dodgers rookies Will Smith, Dustin May and Tony Gonsolin.
Smith excelled in his first two Major League stints, earning his way to a bigger role as the team’s starting catcher thanks in part to the season-long struggles of Austin Barnes. May and Gonsolin, the organization’s top two pitching prospects, have each made starts during the Dodgers’ current homestand.
May allowed four runs (three earned) over 5.2 innings in his Major League debut Friday against the San Diego Padres. Gonsolin threw six shutout innings against potential postseason opponent St. Louis Cardinals on Monday, and May then started the series finale on Wednesday.
Both pitching prospects are expected to get an opportunity at the big league level to earn a spot on the Dodgers’ 2019 playoff roster.