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Yankees Top 20 Prospects according to MLB.com
2 years ago  ::  Nov 14, 2012 - 1:41PM #1
diehardma
Posts: 738
Just a note that the reports on each player were made by MLB.com and not myself.

1. Gary Sanchez C - Like his former organization mate, Jesus Montero, Sanchez is an offensive-minded backstop, but he's still on the bottom rungs of the Yanks' system. Sanchez does have some defensive ability, with a plus arm and glimpses of other skills in the past. In 2011, though, his glovework overall took a step backward. Sanchez's bat helped him advance in 2012, earning a promotion to Class A Advanced Tampa in early July, after putting up a .297/.353/.517 slash line in the South Atlantic League. He was only 19-years-old for all of 2012, with above-average raw power and the potential to be an excellent all-around hitter, so he has plenty of time to move up the ladder.

2. Mason Williams OF - A toolsy outfielder signed out of high school in 2010, Williams started to show what he can do during his first extended play in pro ball in 2011. He continued to hit well in the South Atlantic League in 2012, even tapping into some power, and was promoted to Class A Advanced Tampa in early July. That promotion was short-lived, as a torn labrum ended his season in early August and required surgery. A left-handed hitter who can hit for average and should mature into more power, Williams has a better idea in terms of an approach than many hitters his age. He has plus speed and will only get better on the basepaths as he gains more experience. He has everything he needs to be an above-average defensive center fielder.

3. Tyler Austin OF - Austin’s combined .354 average in 2011 was better than any hitter in the Yankees’ system, and he topped the season off by hitting .429 in the New York-Penn League playoffs to help short-season Class A Staten Island win yet another title. He continued to hit the ball well in 2012, putting together a .320/.405/.598 in the South Atlantic League and earning a promotion to Class A Advanced Tampa in July. After splitting time at first and third in his first two seasons in the organization, Austin played almost all of his games in 2012 in right field. Austin was hit in the head by a pitch and spent three weeks in June on the disabled list.

4. Manny Banuelos LHP - The stuff is definitely there for Banuelos to be successful at the Major League level, but he has to learn how to harness it more consistently and stay healthy. The latter is becoming a tricky proposition, as the lefty will miss the entire 2013 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery in October. That, after making just six starts in 2012. Banuelos has three pitches that can be above average or better, with his fastball, curve and changeup. He's struck out over nine batters per nine innings throughout his Minor League career, and his pure stuff improved in recent years. His command held him back, though, and he walked nearly five batters per nine in 2011 and often didn't command his fastball well within the strike zone.

5. Slade Heathcott OF - A former two-sport star, Heathcott still has all the raw tools that made the Yankees want to take him in the first round in 2009. He’s had his share of issues, both off the field and on, that have held back his development, but he seems to be headed in the right direction. Heathcott is a high-energy player with outstanding speed and raw power who needs to harness his aggressive style and become more selective at the plate and on the basepaths. Now all he has to do is stay healthy after a pair of shoulder surgeries. Heathcott got a late start to the 2012 season, after a rehab stint to recover from his second surgery, but once he returned to action in June he hit well in the Florida State League, both for average and for power.

6. Ty Hensley RHP - Dylan Bundy and Archie Bradley represented the Oklahoma high school ranks in the first round of the Draft in 2011. In 2012, it was Hensley’s turn. Strong and durable, he has a fastball that can be above-average, touching 94 mph when he needs to reach back for a little extra. His hard curve has good downer rotation at times, but it becomes slurvy when he drops his arm angle. Hensley didn’t need a changeup much in high school, so it’s behind the other two, but it should be a usable third pitch. He’s aggressive on the mound and tends to be around the strike zone, with his command sure to improve as he refines his mechanics.

7. Zoilo Almonte OF - The young Dominican outfielder reached Double-A for the first time and upped his numbers in pretty much every offensive category in 2011. He hit even better when he repeated the level in 2012. Although not overly toolsy, Almonte does have some power and speed, enough for him to be a double-digit contributor in homers and steals. He’s played all three outfield positions and might be a fourth outfielder when all is said and done, though if the power continues to come, he could settle into a corner spot nicely. Almonte missed over a month of the 2012 season dealing with hamstring spasms, but after rehabbing in Florida he re-joined Trenton in late May and stayed healthy for the rest of the season.

8. Angelo Gumbs 2B - The SoCal high school product has some nice tools, but he’s still very raw. Gumbs has very good bat speed that should allow him to be a good hitter down the line, though he’s very aggressive at the plate, as well as in other aspects of the game. He’s a decent runner who goes all-out all the time. A shortstop in high school, he’s played second in his first two seasons in the organization. Some think a future home in the outfield might make sense. His 2012 season was his first taste of full-season ball, but an elbow injury ended his season at the end of June.

9. Dante Bichette Jr. 3B - After the Yankees made Bichette their first selection in the 2011 Draft, the son of the former big leaguer signed quickly and went out and played well. Watching the younger Bichette hit can be a bit eerie for those who remember his father, but the approach certainly worked as he ended up the MVP of the Gulf Coast League. As the son of a player, he has an advanced approach to the game and he was better than advertised at third base. His 2012 campaign, in the South Atlantic League, was less successful, with his numbers dropping across the board.

10. Ramon Flores OF - Put simply, Flores can flat out hit. The left-handed hitter has a terrific approach at the plate, with outstanding plate discipline. He has some power, but he’s more of a gap guy who uses all fields. Even without great speed, he’s a very good baserunner who will steal a base now and again. He’s mostly played left field, though he’s seen time at all three outfield spots as well as at first base. Wherever he plays, it’s his bat that will carry him up the ladder.

11. Adam Warren RHP - Very quietly, Warren made quick work of the Yankees’ system, pitching all year in Triple-A in 2011. He repeated the level in 2012, making his Major League debut in late June. The North Carolina product has seen his stuff improve as a pro, but he’s never going to wow scouts with plus pitches. He’s more of a command and control type who doesn’t typically hurt himself with walks and has proven to be a durable workhorse type. He may not have the highest upside in the world, but he could have a very effective career as an innings-eater in the back half of a rotation. Warren was called up again when rosters expanded in September.

12. Nik Turley LHP - Turley has shaken off a broken bone in his pitching hand suffered in the second half of 2011 to become one of the most effective pitchers in the Yankees’ system in 2012. The big lefty will touch the low 90s with his fastball and complements it with a very good curve and a changeup that should be a fine third option. He doesn’t hurt himself with walks and uses his height to create a good downhill plane. Turley's not a high ceiling guy, but has the chance to pitch in a big league rotation in the future.

13. Jose A. Ramirez RHP - Ramirez took a step back with a subpar 2011 season, but has bounced back with a solid 2012 campaign. His fastball can touch the mid 90s at times, and he’ll throw a very good changeup and a slider to go along with it. He improved his command and cut his walk rate while continuing to keep the ball down and get groundballs. If he can continue that refinement and add some strength, Ramirez has the chance to be a solid starter at the big league level.

14. Mark Montgomery RHP - Montgomery is on a fast track to a job in the Yankees’ bullpen. The Longwood product uses an outstanding fastball-slider combination to dominate as a short reliever. The slider is the better offering, a true plus pitch that generates a lot of swings and misses. His fastball will sit in the low 90s to go along with the wipeout breaking ball. Already in Double-A in his first full season, Montgomery has closed in the Minors. Even if he doesn’t serve that role in New York, he has the chance to have a big impact.

15. Jose Pirela 2B - Signed initially as an shortstop, Pirela has moved all over the diamond in 2012, during his second taste of Double-A. After struggling offensively a year ago, he’s shown the kind of hitting promise that made him a big prospect out of Venezuela. He has a solid approach at the plate and can spray line drives to the gaps. He’s an average runner but maximizes it with an all-out style of play. No longer an everyday shortstop, Pirela has the chance to be an interesting offensive-minded utilityman.

16. Jose Campos RHP - Campos, who joined the Yankees’ organization along with Michael Pineda in the trade with the Mariners for Jesus Montero and Hector Noesi, made his U.S. debut in 2011 a stirring one, going to the advanced short-season Northwest League before he turned 19 and promptly leading the circuit in ERA and strikeouts. The 2012 season was set to be his first full one in the pros, but an elbow injury ended his year after only five starts in the South Atlantic League. A big right-hander who can run his fastball up to 95 mph, Campos has a very good curve, and he’s developing a changeup as well. He has a pretty good feel for pitching, and if he can stay healthy he might move more quickly than one would think.

17. Dellin Betances RHP - Betances has a three-pitch mix, with his fastball and curve grading out as plus pitches. He throws in the mid-90s and uses his size to create a good downhill plane. His power curve is outstanding, though he sometimes has trouble throwing it for strikes. Betances’ changeup is behind those two, but it has shown glimpses and at the very least will be an average third offering. His command took a step backward in 2011 and regressed even further in 2012, when he walked a whopping 8.3 batters per nine innings in 16 starts with Triple-A Scranton Wilkes-Barre. The Yankees demoted him to Double-A in June, and placed him on the disabled list in late August with shoulder soreness. He’ll need to show that he can stay healthy and harness his stuff a bit better to have long-term success.

18. Austin Aune SS - A two-sport star in high school, Aune had the ability to make it in either football or baseball and the Yankees were able to sign him away from Texas Christian. A potential five-tool player, Aune bats lefty and has potential plus power. He has good range at shortstop and a great arm, but some scouts think that a move to the outfield could be in his near future. Aune could potentially play center field at the next level, especially because of his great speed and arm. Although a bit raw, Aune has upside and great makeup, which should allow him to learn quickly now that he’s focusing on baseball only.

19. Zachary Nuding RHP - The big right-hander has a big arm to match. The junior college product has a fastball that easily hits the mid-90s and he will pitch with a downhill plane and a good amount of sink. He’ll throw a slider and changeup to complement it, though the offspeed pitch isn’t as good as the other two. He’s improved his walk rate considerably in 2012, giving more hope he can start. Worst-case, Nuding has the power stuff that would work well in short relief if things don’t continue to come together. He missed nearly two months on the disabled list, but returned in late July to pitch well for Tampa in the Florida State League.

20. Ravel Santana OF - Another toolsy outfielder in the lower levels of the system, Santana tore up the Gulf Coast League in his U.S. debut in 2011 until an ankle injury ended his season. He moved to the New York-Penn League in 2012 and struggled to adjust, with more strikeouts and fewer extra-base hits. Still, he has above-average to plus tools across the board, with the potential to hit for power. He has a pretty good approach at the plate with excellent bat speed, so he should hit for average as well. He’s a very good defender with a plus arm. If he can return to form, he and Mason Williams might run into each other soon, but that’s a good problem for the Yankees to have.
2 years ago  ::  Nov 14, 2012 - 1:59PM #2
BigGuy
Posts: 47,985

Here's Baseball America's Yankees top 10 list that came out a week or so ago, for comparison sake:


Baseball America's Top 10 Yankee Prospects








The best prospects in the Yankee system according to Baseball America, as well as assorted notes.


The official post from Baseball America doesn't come out for a few days, but Trenton Thunder beat writer Josh Norris (@jnorris427) tweeted out the list a little early.


The top 10 and the last level they played at in 2012:


1. Mason Williams - High A Tampa
2. Slade Heathcott - High A Tampa
3. Gary Sanchez - High A Tampa
4. Tyler Austin - AA Trenton
5. Jose Campos - Low A Charleston
6. Brett Marshall - AA Trenton
7. Angelo Gumbs - Low A Charleston
8. Manny Banuelos - AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre
9. Ty Hensley - GCL
10. Rafael DePaula - DSL


Assorted thoughts:


- Austin Romine, Dante Bichette Jr., Ravel Santana, Dellin Betances, and J.R. Murphy fell off the list from last year.


- Slade Heathcott jumped from 10th in 2012 to 2nd in 2013 after returning from injury. He needs to stay healthy to keep the spot. He's probably the biggest surprise on this list to me, and I don't think I'd have ranked him as high as BA did.


- Jose Campos still making the 5th spot after missing most of the season due to injury is a testament to his potential, as he was on fire for Charleston before he got hurt. He may prove to be the highlight of the Montero/Pineda trade if Pineda can't come back effectively from his torn labrum.


- The majority of talent in the system is still concentrated in the lower levels of the minors, but Tyler Austin, Slade Heathcott, and Brett Marshall will be bringing that a little closer to the majors for 2013. Hopefully Williams and Sanchez aren't too far behind them.


- I'm a little surprised that Mark Montgomery didn't make the list at all after tearing up various levels of the system this year, but I suppose that's the life of a reliever. We still love you, Mark.


- Rafael DePaula's development after chasing down a visa for years will be something to watch. He has tons of promise, even after a lot of missed developmental time. He's nowhere close to the majors yet, but it will still be interesting to see if he was worth waiting for.


- Also from BA, according to Norris: Mason Williams' grades on the 20/80 scale - Batting: 60, Power: 60, Speed: 70, Defense: 70, Arm: 50


There will be more, I'm sure, when the official post is released from BA on the 9th. This is a pretty good preview, though.





This team couldn't score in a whorehouse.
2 years ago  ::  Nov 14, 2012 - 2:19PM #3
hampfan
Posts: 1,701

Nov 14, 2012 -- 1:59PM, BigGuy wrote:


Here's Baseball America's Yankees top 10 list that came out a week or so ago, for comparison sake:


Baseball America's Top 10 Yankee Prospects








The top 10 and the last level they played at in 2012:


1. Mason Williams - High A Tampa
2. Slade Heathcott - High A Tampa
3. Gary Sanchez - High A Tampa
4. Tyler Austin - AA Trenton
5. Jose Campos - Low A Charleston
6. Brett Marshall - AA Trenton
7. Angelo Gumbs - Low A Charleston
8. Manny Banuelos - AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre
9. Ty Hensley - GCL
10. Rafael DePaula - DSL


Assorted thoughts:


- Austin Romine, Dante Bichette Jr., Ravel Santana, Dellin Betances, and J.R. Murphy fell off the list from last year.


- Slade Heathcott jumped from 10th in 2012 to 2nd in 2013 after returning from injury. He needs to stay healthy to keep the spot. He's probably the biggest surprise on this list to me, and I don't think I'd have ranked him as high as BA did.


- Jose Campos still making the 5th spot after missing most of the season due to injury is a testament to his potential, as he was on fire for Charleston before he got hurt. He may prove to be the highlight of the Montero/Pineda trade if Pineda can't come back effectively from his torn labrum.


- The majority of talent in the system is still concentrated in the lower levels of the minors, but Tyler Austin, Slade Heathcott, and Brett Marshall will be bringing that a little closer to the majors for 2013. Hopefully Williams and Sanchez aren't too far behind them.


- I'm a little surprised that Mark Montgomery didn't make the list at all after tearing up various levels of the system this year, but I suppose that's the life of a reliever. We still love you, Mark.





Thanks for the post, Big Guy--as always, you keep us informed in the right way. I'm happy to see BA's acknowledgment of Austin, esp., which may prevent Cashman from entertaining him as potential trade-bait--or will it work the opposite way in Cashman's mind, since other teams will surely want Austin, esp. if he continues hitting the way he did in 2012? Hope the former. I agree with you about Montgomery. Maybe his poor All Star performance at AZ kept him off the list, but even a young relief pitcher must get tired after pitching fairly regularly throughout the summer and then into the late fall. I think he's on his way up. I hope they invite some of the top ten plus Montgomery to ST this coming year. Meanwhile, keeping tabs on that group throughout the summer may just turn out to be more interesting and compelling than watching the major-league Yanks.


2 years ago  ::  Nov 14, 2012 - 2:47PM #4
BigGuy
Posts: 47,985

Nov 14, 2012 -- 2:19PM, hampfan wrote:


Nov 14, 2012 -- 1:59PM, BigGuy wrote:


Here's Baseball America's Yankees top 10 list that came out a week or so ago, for comparison sake:


Baseball America's Top 10 Yankee Prospects








The top 10 and the last level they played at in 2012:


1. Mason Williams - High A Tampa
2. Slade Heathcott - High A Tampa
3. Gary Sanchez - High A Tampa
4. Tyler Austin - AA Trenton
5. Jose Campos - Low A Charleston
6. Brett Marshall - AA Trenton
7. Angelo Gumbs - Low A Charleston
8. Manny Banuelos - AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre
9. Ty Hensley - GCL
10. Rafael DePaula - DSL


Assorted thoughts:


- Austin Romine, Dante Bichette Jr., Ravel Santana, Dellin Betances, and J.R. Murphy fell off the list from last year.


- Slade Heathcott jumped from 10th in 2012 to 2nd in 2013 after returning from injury. He needs to stay healthy to keep the spot. He's probably the biggest surprise on this list to me, and I don't think I'd have ranked him as high as BA did.


- Jose Campos still making the 5th spot after missing most of the season due to injury is a testament to his potential, as he was on fire for Charleston before he got hurt. He may prove to be the highlight of the Montero/Pineda trade if Pineda can't come back effectively from his torn labrum.


- The majority of talent in the system is still concentrated in the lower levels of the minors, but Tyler Austin, Slade Heathcott, and Brett Marshall will be bringing that a little closer to the majors for 2013. Hopefully Williams and Sanchez aren't too far behind them.


- I'm a little surprised that Mark Montgomery didn't make the list at all after tearing up various levels of the system this year, but I suppose that's the life of a reliever. We still love you, Mark.





Thanks for the post, Big Guy--as always, you keep us informed in the right way. I'm happy to see BA's acknowledgment of Austin, esp., which may prevent Cashman from entertaining him as potential trade-bait--or will it work the opposite way in Cashman's mind, since other teams will surely want Austin, esp. if he continues hitting the way he did in 2012? Hope the former. I agree with you about Montgomery. Maybe his poor All Star performance at AZ kept him off the list, but even a young relief pitcher must get tired after pitching fairly regularly throughout the summer and then into the late fall. I think he's on his way up. I hope they invite some of the top ten plus Montgomery to ST this coming year. Meanwhile, keeping tabs on that group throughout the summer may just turn out to be more interesting and compelling than watching the major-league Yanks.





You're welcome.  I'm surprised Montgomery didn't make BA's list too as the author of those comments said.  BA's listing came out early in the month before last Saturday's poor game.  One game after a long season really means nothing to me.  The kid's the real deal.  He just couldn't get his fastball over for strikes Saturday night for some reason.  As I mentioned before he has one of the best sliders I've seen in a long long time, and I have no doubt if he does well at AAA we'll see him in NY this year.  You also raise a good point about Austin.  He's slightly ahead of the other guys and with that he's probably a little more tradeable.  There have also been some questions about his defensive ability, which I think are way too early to really judge the kid on. The kid's only played rightfield last season and should stay right there.  These are 2 of the more prestigious lists that come out though.  We'll see everybody and their mother with their own ranking lists between now and the end of January.  


I will say this though on these lists, and its just my opinion,  I think Sanchez is the number one guy too, even though he's the youngest and being a catcher probably the furthest away from NY.  I really like the 3 outfielders too, and have been very impressed with Heathcott.  My biggest concern is whether Campos has to end up having TJS.  He's got some great potential.

This team couldn't score in a whorehouse.
2 years ago  ::  Nov 14, 2012 - 11:19PM #5
Yankee1954
Posts: 8,749

Great job BG. You truly are a wonder for us baseball geeks! Thanks again 

2 years ago  ::  Nov 15, 2012 - 12:28AM #6
Yankees
Posts: 5,888

All those players seem to be so far away... I wish there was a young stud in our system that is ready to make an impact.  That's what this team really needs.

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