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Jan 7 – Peeking at the Prospects

nyy-27-logo(Bronx, NY) – With all the focus on the big free agent signings we should also take a look a the Yankees future:  the farm system, always an important part of sustained success in any organization.  For the Yanks it was also the foundation for those 4 recent championships (1996-2000).   Back in November Baseball America listed the Yankee prospects (full story) as follows below.  Some of these names may be new to many of us now but here’s hoping they are mainstream down the line.

We will track these prospects throughout the year and see how they hold up to these ratings.  Interesting enough the recent rumor mills says that the Yanks are shopping Nady and Swisher which must mean they are looking for a centerfielder.  But check this quote and other predictions from Baseball America:

BA: The Yankees did see significant progress from high-dollar investments such as Austin Jackson, who could  claim their center-field job at some point in 2009, and catcher Jesus Montero, a $1.65 million bonus baby who had an all-star season in low Class A. Righthander Andrew Brackman, who got the largest draft bonus in club history ($3.35 million) as part of a big league contract that could reach $13 million with incentives, finally got on the mound in Hawaii Winter Baseball. He had Tommy John surgery shortly after signing in 2007 and an appendectomy this July.

Top 10 Prospects

1. Austin Jackson, of
2. Jesus Montero, c
3. Andrew Brackman, rhp
4. Austin Romine, c
5. Dellin Betances, rhp
6. Zach McAllister, rhp
7. Alfredo Aceves, rhp
8. Phil Coke, lhp
9. Mark Melancon, rhp
10. Bradley Suttle, 3b

Baseball America also adds a a different dimension by giving some ratings of the ‘tools’ of some of the prospects to sum up some things to tag in your minds about some of these names and some differentiating factors.

Best Tools

Best Hitter for Average Bradley Suttle
Best Power Hitter Jesus Montero
Best Strike-Zone Discipline Chris Malec
Fastest Baserunner Brett Gardner
Best Athlete Austin Jackson
Best Fastball Andrew Brackman
Best Curveball Christian Garcia
Best Slider Anthony Claggett
Best Changeup Alfredo Aceves
Best Control Zach McAllister
Best Defensive Catcher Francisco Cervelli
Best Defensive Infielder Ramiro Pena
Best Infield Arm Marcos Vechionacci
Best Defensive Outfielder Austin Jackson
Best Outfield Arm Seth Fortenberry

TOP PROSPECT

When looking at the last decade we see the top prospects for the first half are all somewhere else now.  And the more recent top players are now part of the big club.

Top Prospects of the DecadeE DECADE

Year Player, Position Team as of 2008
1999 Nick Johnson, 1b Nationals
2000 Nick Johnson, 1b Nationals
2001 Nick Johnson, 1b Nationals
2002 Drew Henson, 3b Out of baseball
2003 Jose Contreras, rhp White Sox
2004 Dioner Navarro, c Rays
2005 Eric Duncan, 3b Yankees
2006 Phil Hughes, rhp Yankees
2007 Phil Hughes, rhp Yankees
2008 Joba Chamberlain, rhp Yankees
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3 Responses

  1. I really like Coke as well, Brendan. I like his velocity, and that he hides the ball well. Although I like that he’s getting stretched out to get a shot at a rotation spot, I’m salivating at the chance for the bullpen to have two quality lefties with Coke and Marte.

    I too am fixated on Jackson, Steven. My understanding is that his defense is very good. As long as his bat can continue to develop, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him get a shot to play this year. I like Gardner but he needs to generate some power in that swing.
    http://heartlandpinstripes.wordpress.com/

  2. I am excited about Austin Jackson! I hope he can patrolled centerfielder for the New York Yankees for the next 10 years when he is ready to contribute at the major league level after finishing Triple-A Scranton Wilkes Barre Yankees!

  3. im pretty excited to see that phil coke was #8…i saw him pitch a few times this summer out of the bullpen, and as a lefty he was throwing 93-94 with a good slider…if hes #8, i cant wait to see the first 7 guys…ive heard that brackman is like a right handed version of randy johnson…

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