The Yankees don’t have a large amount of young talent, but not as little as some might believe. Last season, almost all of their top prospects struggled mightily, but that hasn’t been the case in 2014.
Here are the “Baby Bombers” who shouldn’t be considered trade-bait:
3B/DH Eric Jagielo
The first of three players picked by the Yankees in the first round of 2013’s amateur draft, 22-year-old Eric Jagielo has wasted no time making his mark. Last season, in 51 games for the Staten Island Yankees (Short-Season Class A- ball) he hit .266/.376/.451 with 6 home runs and 27 RBI, which was good enough to earn a promotion to the Tampa Yankees (Advanced A-ball) to start the 2014 season.
Jagielo has been amazing so far in 2014, hitting .256/.339/.500 with 10 home runs and 31 RBI in just 42 games.
His one problem is fielding. In 30 games at third base, he’s made 9 errors and has an abysmal fielding percentage of .875. It may be that third base is not the position for him, but his offensive output has been incredible.
OF Aaron Judge
Another 2013 first round pick, the 6’7″ Judge has been playing extremely well for the Charleston RiverDogs (Class A). He’s batting .327/.423/.479 with 5 home runs and 24 RBI in 46 games.
Judge has drawn comparisons to Miami Marlins’ slugger Giancarlo Stanton, mostly due to his potential power, and is considered a good runner for his size.
SP Ian Clarkin
At 19-years-old, Ian Clarkin has performed incredibly well for Charleston. His season began in early May (injury), but he defied expectations in his first three starts.
In his first start on May 3rd, he pitched 5 shutout innings, while giving up only 4 hits and compiling 4 strikeouts.
Clarkin started his second game on May 9th. He went 4.2 innings and allowed only 1 run, 3 hits, and 2 walks while striking out 5.
His best outing came on May 14th, when he pitched 6 innings and gave up only 1 earned run on 4 hits.
Though Clarkin was rocked on May 20th (4 innings, 6 runs, 8 hits, and 2 walks), he has shown an ability to be an effective pitcher. His fastball usually sits in the low-90s, but he also throws a highly-touted curveball as well as a decent change-up.
With a fastball that usually sits in the low 90s and can reach 97 MPH as well as a decent breaking ball, DePaula has the necessary stuff to make it in the big leagues, even though he has struggled at times since joining the Tampa Yankees.
His ERA is a bit high this season (4.18), but he is still missing bats (58 strikeouts in 47.1 innings pitched). He just needs time and the right coaching to put everything together.
Even though he’s only reached advanced A-ball and is 23-years-old, trading him would a huge risk as he could eventually become a top-of-the-rotation starter.
C/DH/OF Peter O’Brien
Though he may not have a set position, O’Brien has the tools to be a really good Major League power hitter.
So far in 2014 (between the Tampa Yankees and Trenton Thunder), he’s already clubbed 20 home runs and compiled 45 RBI. He is also hitting .289 and is slugging an astonishing .657.
He will strikeout a lot, and won’t hit for a high average once he arrives in the Major Leagues, but he will hit for serious power.
O’Brien might be one of the few players on this list to make it to the big leagues by the end of the 2015 season.
Even with a high amount of base runners so far this season, he has prevented them from scoring as his ERA is a mere 0.84.
Now with the Bomber’s Triple-A affiliate, the Scranton/Wilkes Barre Yankees, Ramirez possesses a fastball that can reach 98 MPH as well as an above-average slider and change-up.
Don’t be surprised to see Ramirez by the end of this season.