The best part of prospect ranking season is comparing the different top 100 lists. Patterns emerge and one can generate a consensus opinion around a particular player or system. Outliers exist, of course, and they make for fun times too. Keith Law published his top 100 list over the last two days, and only one Yankee made the cut. As it turns out, he’s not one of the regularly talked about prospects.
Deivi Garcia checked in at number 61. The right-hander logged 74 innings last year, mostly splitting his time between Low-A Charleston and High-A Tampa. He pitched to a 2.55 ERA (2.60 FIP) with a 28.7% strikeout-to-walk percentage. Law likes the 19-year-old’s easy fastball, but thinks his curveball could be a game-changing pitch.
The Yankees signed Garcia as part of their July 2 class in 2015. He’s on the smaller side, measuring in at 5-foot-10 and 163 pounds. This frame led some to wonder if his future resides in the bullpen, not the rotation. In a chat held over the summer, Law talked about this potential. “There is, given his size,” Law said, “but I believe he has very good spin rates on the [fastball] and breaking ball, and the results are tremendous.”
Besides, size concerns aren’t all that they’re cracked up to be today. Remember how Luis Severino was definitely a reliever? A smaller stature hasn’t hurt Justus Sheffield’s standings either.
Garcia didn’t make any other top 100 list, which is noteworthy, but he has clear frontline starter upside. The other curious factor here remains how Estevan Florial, Jonathan Loaisiga, and to a lesser extent Everson Pereira didn’t make the cut. The prospect evaluating world seems notably split on the Yankees’ young talent, and that should make for some interesting conversations.