Courtesy of Baseball America, we have updates on several highly touted prospects.
Gary Sanchez and Manny Banuelos were ranked 12th and 13th, respectively, on this week's Prospect Hot Sheet.
... questions still loom large surrounding Sanchez's defense. The young Dominican currently leads the Sally League in passed balls (13) despite splitting catching duties...
I've heard that he's making Jesus Montero look like Johnny Bench, and Sanchez was supposed to be the superior defensive catcher.
He's done a great job this year keeping the ball down and has yet to surrender a home run because of it. Over his last two starts, spanning eleven innings, Banuelos has allowed just five hits while retiring twelve batters on strikes.
He currently has an excellent groundball rate of 56%.
Jorge Vazquez was named a "Man Among Boys," not just because of his age (29), but also because of his dominance -
Vazquez doesn't figure into the Yankees' long-term plan at first base, but he's doing his best to give them something to think about with his performance this season for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. The 29-year-old veteran of the Mexican League currently leads the Triple-A International League in homers (16), RBIs (41) and slugging (.641), due in part to two-home run efforts on Saturday and Tuesday. Vazquez leads the minors in homers, but that has come at the cost of an elevated strikeout rate (45 in 38 games).
And Ramon Flores, who I recently mentioned as a prospect to keep an eye on, made the "Helium Watch" -
The 19-year-old Charleston first baseman doesn't exactly fit your typical profile for a left fielder/first baseman. He doesn't really have the power you look for at the traditional power spots. But the teenager is hitting .283 thanks to an advanced feel for hitting. A scout who recently saw him complimented Flores' feel for the strike zone and noticed that his game power actually seems better than the raw power he shows in batting practice. That was on clear display this week, as Flores hit four home runs as well as two doubles (doubling his season extra-base hit total). He hit .323/.400/.744 this week. As a lefty thrower he doesn't have a lot of other options defensively, but if he hits the Yankees will make room.
His season numbers (.283/.411/.457) don't look all that special for a first-baseman, but when you consider his BB/K rate (28/33), Isolated Discipline (.128), and his age (he just turned 19), it foreshadows how special a hitter he could be.
Look for a profile on RHP Dellin Betances at 11 a.m.