It may not be as glorified as the NBA or NFL drafts, but the MLB draft is definitely not something to be overlooked. The best thing about it is that it takes most drafted players a few years to make it to the big leagues. It is always exciting to take a look at the draftees while they work their way up, but it’s also fun to take a look at them before they even begin their pro careers. That said, let’s review a few of the players that were selected by the New York Yankees in this year’s draft.
The Yankees were lucky enough to have three picks in the first round of the draft; a perfect way to replenish and bolster their farm system. With their three picks, they surely did not disappoint.
Pick #26: Eric Jagielo
First off, let me begin by saying that I think it was very smart of the Yankees to draft a quality third-baseman first. With the future of Alex Rodriguez constantly in doubt, and very few options down in the system, it was important that the Yankees took a guy who they could base future decisions around. Scouts absolutely love Jageilo. So much, in fact, that Christopher Crawford of ESPN thinks that he could be in the Bronx as early as 2014. That’s pretty amazing. He is a left-handed hitter who has solid pop in his bat and can handle pitches very well at the plate. He is reportedly very advanced for his age, and that’s a good thing. Keith Law of ESPN sees him as a 20+ home run guy in the majors with a few all-star appearances. If he continues to show the skills that people love, then I think it will be safe to say that the Yankees really got a steal with the third baseman from Notre Dame.
Pick #32: Aaron Judge
Well if you wanted to find the most physically intimidating player drafted by the Yankees this year, Judge would be it. The center fielder from Fresno State stands at 6′ 7″ and 255 pounds. What’s even more impressive is that he is supposedly very athletic. Judge may not be as promising as Jagielo is, but he projects to be a decent player if he ends up making it to the MLB. Jonathan Mayo of MLB likes his patience, base running ability, and arm. These are all skills that tend to be overlooked by most fans, but are very important nonetheless. Judge projects to be more of a corner outfielder than a center fielder, so he is going to have to get accustomed to a new position. He has a quick bat, but it is not very reliable in terms of pop. The power could, and most likely will, come later on down the road.
Pick #33: Ian Clarkin
If there’s one player that the Yankees need to sign over anyone else, it’s Clarkin. Clarkin is exactly the type of player who went #33 now, but will probably go #1 in the future if he goes unsigned. Remember the Gerrit Cole situation a few years ago? Clarkin is a high school left hander that possesses a dominant fastball that can hit 95 mph already, along with a repertoire of good, but still developing pitches. Pitching is incredibly important these days, and with more teams insisting on locking up their top arms, the only way to get a top guy is to develop them yourselves. Clarkin has the potential to be a very good pitcher in the future, the Yankees just have to get him to agree to terms.
All in all, the Yankees had a very good first round, and I hope that all three of these players see themselves in the Bronx within the next few years.