Tis the season for all of the prospect rankings! We covered Keith Law’s rankings of the Yankees’ farm system and now it’s time to turn our eyes toward Baseball Prospectus. They released their top 101 prospects, and the Yankees have nine guys who made the cut.
First up is, of course, Gleyber Torres. He ranks 15th on the BP list. It has been speculated that everyone will look back on the Aroldis Chapman trade eventually as the Gleyber Torres trade. Here’s to seeing that become a reality. Just behind Torres is Clint Frazier at 16. He was also acquired at the trade deadline last year from the Indians in return for Andrew Miller. BP notes that Frazier has as much hitting potential as anyone in the minors, which is definitely high praise. The risk here is a bit higher, as the annual says, but Frazier is also the prospect probably closest to the majors at this point.
There is a pretty big gap between the first two and the other Yankees on the list. Shortstop Jorge Mateo, who has been a bit overshadowed in the organization since Torres joined the fold, comes in at 43rd. His 80-grade speed is still the gem of his tool set, but BP notes that he has been a bit inconsistent defensively. Mateo reportedly worked on some center field this fall, and they claim that may end up being his best bet long-term.
Some fortunate money situations dropped Blake Rutherford into the Yankees’ hands, and he ranks 49th on BP’s list. Rutherford lit the Appalachian League on fire in his first taste of professional baseball, and could be a good bet to climb up this list in future iterations, according to BP.
Justus Sheffield, another midseason acquisition, and James Kaprielian round out the 50s at 52 and 58, respectively. The Yankees are in pretty desperate need of pitching help, and both these guys should be able to provide that if everything shakes out in their favor. Aaron Judge makes his way onto the list at 63rd, even though his days as a prospect are very numbered. He should see plenty of time in right field in New York this season, hopefully adjusting to higher levels of competition as he has in the past.
One of the newest prospects, Albert Abreu, comes in at 82nd. He was thought to be the prize of the trade with the Astros for Brian McCann. His command hasn’t really been there yet, but he has all the stuff to iron out those issues. A mid-90s fastball and promising complimentary pitches will go a long way.
Rounding out the last at 101 is Tyler Wade. Wade is a bit of a surprising addition here, but it shows how his stock has improved. BP says he’d be higher on the list if his arm was good enough to make them think he could be a regular shortstop in the big leagues. He has played quite a bit of second and also learned some outfield this fall, so his future may be as a utility guy that can do a little bit of everything but not any one thing overly well. That would be just fine.
What do you think of Baseball Prospectus’ list? Do you think anyone didn’t make it who should have? Let us know in the comments.