Keibert Jose Ruiz
- Bats Both, Throws Right
- Height 6' 0", Weight 225 lb.
Keibert Ruiz is a catcher who was signed by the Los Angeles Dodgers (the scout was Pedro Avila) as an international free agent out of Venezuela on July 20, 2014. He began his professional career the following summer, 2015, with the DSL Dodgers hitting a solid .300/.340/.387 as a 16-year-old. In 2016, he moved to the U.S. and split his time between the GCL Dodgers and Ogden Raptors of the Pioneer League, hitting a combined .374/.412/.527 in 56 games. he was named an organizational All-Star after the season. In 2017, he continued to hit his way up the ladder as he put up a batting line of .316/.361/.452 in 101 games. He was with the Great Lakes Loons of the Midwest League and the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes of the California League that season, and was much younger than the league average at both stops. he was amid-season All-Star in the Midwest League and an organizational All-Star for the second straight season.
In 2018, Keibert spent a full season in the AA Texas League at age 19, with the Tulsa Drillers. In 101 games, he hit .268/.328/.401 with 14 doubles and 12 homers. He was named to the World Team for the 2018 Futures Game and was again a mid-season All-Star. After the season, he played in the Arizona Fall League where he continued to impress, being named to the All-Prospect team and playing in the Rising Stars Game. When the major league Dodgers did not make a strong bid to retain starting catcher Yasmani Grandal that winter, it was in large part because they expected Keibert to take over the job in short order, and that they only needed a solution to tie them over in the meantime. He split the 2019 season between Tulsa and the AAA Oklahoma City Dodgers, hitting .261 in 85 games with 6 homers and 34 RBIs. He was injured shortly after his promotion to AAA and did not play again after the first days of August, also missing a chance at a September call-up.
He made his major league debut with the Dodgers on August 16, 2020, being called up when Will Smith was placed on the injured list. In his first major league at-bat, he homered off Julio Teheran of the Los Angeles Angels. He went 2 for 8 in total, spending most of the year at the Dodgers' alternate training site. In 2021, he was mainly in Oklahoma City, where he hit .311 in 51 games. With the Dodgers, he was 1 for 7 with his only hit a homer, then on July 30th, he was traded to the Washington Nationals with three other prospects, including top pitching prospect Josiah Gray, in return for a pair of All-Stars in Max Scherzer and Trea Turner.