De La Rosa, 22, was assigned to Double-A Chattanooga for this season. Last year he was the organization's Minor League Pitcher of the Year. He went 4-1 with a 3.19 ERA at Class A Great Lakes, blossoming after being moved from the bullpen to the starting rotation and earning a promotion to Chattanooga, where he was even better -- 3-1, 1.41.
De La Rosa's parents never married or parented, as he lived from birth in Santo Domingo with his grandmother and worked in a food warehouse as the family's sole provider between the ages of 12 and 15, when he started to play baseball. He signed with the Dodgers at age 18 for a modest $15,000 bonus.