The four most highly-regarded New York Yankees prospects made it onto John Sickels's Top 150 Prospects list this year, and the names should not surprise anyone familiar with the Yankees' system. He did not mention anything in particular on Sanchez (he only commented on a handful of the 150), but here's how he ranked 'em:
46) Gary Sanchez, C, New York Yankees, 2015
58) Tyler Austin, OF, New York Yankees, 2014
COMMENT: It's puzzling to me why people aren't higher on Austin. I know he's not quite as toolsy as the other Yankee outfield prospects, but I believe in the bat and it's not like he's some slug out there.
64) Mason Williams, OF, New York Yankees, 2015
COMMENT: This is where the borderline between B+ and B starts getting really fuzzy and the rankings don't quite match up with all the previous grades. I will get those reconciled before the season begins. There is a lot of peer pressure to jump on the Mason Williams bandwagon. His ceiling is immense, no doubt, and perhaps I'm just a stubborn but I want to see more before giving in to what everyone else thinks. I have one scouty source who says that I'm right to be a bit skeptical, but another who says I'm a moron.
108) Slade Heathcott, OF, New York Yankees, 2014
COMMENT: Heathcott would rank higher but I have worries about his health.
These four prospects can pretty much be ranked in any order, it's just a matter of opinion. Some people even consider Heathcott the top Yankee prospect even though Sickels ranked him below the Top 100. There is no wrong answer because each member of the Baby Bomber Barbershop Quartet offers something different.
The way I see it, Austin's the best pure hitter, and he has crushed pitching at every level, moving quickly through the system even though he was not originally a highly-touted prospect. Sanchez offers the greatest offensive value in terms of position with improving defense to boot, and his sheer power potential at the plate ranks among the top prospects in baseball. He's also by far the youngest of the three, having just turned 20 last December. Both Williams and Heathcott offer the promise of the most all-around game. Williams is probably better in the field and hits for more contact, but Heathcott is becoming a superior baserunner and interestingly walks more than Williams despite striking out more often.
What do you think? Which of the four do you like best? Maybe you even like pitcher Jose Ramirez the best, who Sickels did not rank but placed in Keith Law's Top 110? Do you still consider the injury Manny Banuelos higher than these guys since he was closest at Triple-A before his Tommy John surgery? What about flamethrower Jose Campos, acquired from Seattle in the Jesus Montero deal? Strikeout relief artist Mark Montgomery, who might debut this summer?
Sound off below, and answer the poll as well! We want to hear what you think. That means you, people online right now who don't comment!