Ademar Rifaela comes in at number 29 in the preseason top 30 prospects for the Baltimore Orioles. Make sure to check out yesterday’s profile on number 30 Mason McCoy.
A native of Curacao, Rifaela has been with the Orioles since he was signed as an international free agent in 2013 at the age of 18.
Rifaela struggled in his first four professional seasons. In those four seasons, Rifaela had a batting average of .243 and only 22 home runs and 98 RBI in 260 games.
Ademar spent all of last season in advandced A ball with the Frederick Keys, and had a breakout season winning Carolina League MVP. In 126 games last year, Rifaela slashed .284/.358/.500 with 78 RBI and 73 runs scored. He also lead the Carolina League with 24 home runs.
So far Rifaela has been an average outfielder carrying a .971 fielding percentage. On a scale of 20-80, MLB ranks Rifaela’s fielding and arm at 50. He has spent the most time in right field, but has played all three outfield positions.
If he is able to improve on last years numbers, Rifaela may find himself on the big league roster come September, however the organizational depth in outfield may make it hard for him to make it anytime soon. There are five other outfielders ahead of Rifaela, including three top 10 prospects in Austin Hays, Cedric Mullins, and Anthony Sandtander.
Mlb.com estimates his MLB debut to happen in 2019.