Baseball America has released their mid-season Top 50 Prospects list and two Yankees have made the cut. Gary Sanchez is the top ranked Yankee prospect on the list at #34, and Rafael De Paula is ranked at #45. On BA's Top 100list before the season began, outfielder Mason Williams was the only Yankee to crack the top 50, but after a disappointing start to 2013, he did not make the mid-season list.
In 71 games for High-A Tampa this year, Sanchez has hit .269/.333/.469 with 12 home runs. Baseball America cites that the questions about his ability to stick behind the plate long-term are fewer and farther between than they once were. He's managed to really cut down on the passed balls since a disastrous season at Low-A Charleston two years ago. Sanchez is still just 20 years old and should find himself in Double-A before the season is over. If he keeps up his production, he could end up being the Yankees' top prospect when the rankings are released before next season since Williams, Slade Heathcott, and Tyler Austin have all been kind of disappointing in comparison.
Rafael De Paula is getting his first taste of pitching in America this year, but he has already found immediate success. Before being promoted to High-A Tampa, De Paula struck out 96 batters in 64.1 innings with the Charleston RiverDogs. He led all of Minor League Baseball in strikeouts for a few weeks when he was still with Charleston and allowed opposing batters to only hit .189 against him. Baseball America likes the fact that the results from De Paula were evident almost immediately and that he has a chance to quickly move up through the system.
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