Monday, June 1, 2015


As the month of May comes to an end, we will take another look at how some of the Yankees top prospects are doing down in the minors. We've seen Slade Heathcott and Jacob Lindgren make their Major League debuts and both were successful. While Lindgren could be here to say, it's more than likely Heathcott will be sent back down once Jacoby Ellsbury returns, but it is great to see the potential the young man has for the future!

Let's start with top pitching prospect Luis Severino who was just promoted to Triple-A Scranton! After tearing it up through all the lower levels of the minors, Severino will hopefully make his final promotion before be called upon to help out the big club! Severino has started eight games this year for the Yankees Double-A affiliate, the Trenton Thunder, throwing 38 innings, striking out 48, walking just ten and sporting a 3.32 ERA. The 21 year-old Dominican native is expected to be a fixture in the rotation for the foreseeable future.

The big man down in Trenton, Aaron Judge, has continued to hit the ball very well for the Thunder. Over 43 games, Judge is batting .295 with seven home runs, 27 RBI, 12 doubles, a triple and 24 runs scored. He has struck out 49 times in 196 plate appearances, which is quite a bit, but is rather common for power hitters, especially young ones. Judge is considered the Yankees top position prospect and if he continues to produce, I'd expect him to head to Triple-A Scranton soon enough and make a run at a roster spot in 2016.

Considered by some to be the most hitting-ready Yankees prospect, first baseman Greg Bird has struggled some in Trenton after an impressive spring. He has missed the last three weeks with a right shoulder injury and is rehabbing down in Tampa, but prior to the injury Bird was hitting just .226 with three home runs and 12 RBI over 25 games. There is still a lot of baseball to be played this summer so hopefully Bird gets healthy and back on track.

Rob Refsnyder has righted the ship some at second base after committing five errors through 11 games, he has made just six over the last 28. Not outstanding, but a step in the right direction! He has also swung the bat better as of late and now boasts a .277/.348/.386 slash line with two home runs, 17 RBI, 12 doubles and 18 runs scored. He has only struck out 29 times over 185 plate appearances and has added 18 walks. With Stephen Drew still batting well below his listed weight (.162 over 148 plate appearances) we are all wondering when the young talented hitter is going to be given his shot.

After a slow start over the first two weeks of the season, catching prospect Gary Sanchez has been producing down in Trenton. Sanchez has produced a .261/.312/.430 slash line with six home runs, 22 RBI and six doubles. The young talented backstop has hit 18, 15 and 13 home runs over the last three seasons and right now is on pace to eclipse those marks and hopefully make another jump up to Triple-A by years end. He could very well be the catcher of the future, I for one am hoping the 22 year-old will be!

Eric Jagielo has been tearing it up down in Trenton with a .301/.380/.564 slash line to go with nine long balls and 32 RBI. Those numbers are outstanding in Double-A, or any level for that matter! Plus Jagielo is in just his third season in professional baseball, having played in just 114 games over the first two years. The third base prospect, along with Judge, Sanchez and Mason Williams had led the Thunder offense over the first two months. Dante Bichette Jr. has also contributed a home run and 23 RBI over 42 games, but is batting just .222.

In Scranton, OF Ben Gamel is off to a nice start in his first Triple-A action hitting .338 with two home runs, 20 RBI and 18 runs scored. Bryan Mitchell, is sporting a 3.80 ERA over nine starts and has struck out 37 over 42.2 innings, while Jose Ramirez has a 2.31 ERA over 16 relief appearances.

There are a lot things I'm seeing that I like in the minor leagues and it appears the Yankees will have some guys Major League ready over the next 12-24 months. Just in time for some of their aging veterans long ass contracts to come to an end! If all the stars align, I see a new core of Yankees moving their way up the organization and ready to make an impact at the Major League level.
(WRITTEN 5/30)

Dan Lucia
BYB Writer
Twitter: @DManLucia


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