While Trade Deadline Week is upon us and the Yankees continue to bring in elder, experienced statesman to plug some holes, MLB.com took a look at the Baby Bombers last night. The MLB Network released their Top 100 Prospects in baseball last night, and in doing so they re-ranked the Yankees Top 20. Much like with our own Yanks Go Yard Prospect Watch, there has been a changing of the guard.
Luis Severino has over taken Gary Sanchez as the prized prospect of the Yankees future. It doesn’t come as much of a surprise the way Severino has dominated on three levels this season. He is way ahead of schedule and with a blazing fast, hard fastball and two quality out pitches, he seems like he is ready for a test run in the bigs. Make no mistake, however, as Sanchez is no slouch. Sanchez has a bat that is ready for the bigs, but his defense is probably a year away. His name has been dangled in some trade talks, so it will be interesting if he stays with the club through this week. Severino and Sanchez were the only two Yankees to crack MLB’s Top 100 landing at 70 and 76 respectively.
While the woes of the Yankees farm system have been widely noted, they are clearly moving in the right direction. The big three of the first round of the 2013 draft came in three through five. Eric Jagielo, Ian Clarkin and Aaron Judge are all moving along nicely. While many people have been trying to pry the three away from the Yankees, they seem to be more and more untouchable each passing week.
The Yankees first draft pick of the 2014 draft, Jacob Lindgren, wasted little time cracking the Top Ten prospects in the system. Sitting at number ten, Lindgren has been lights out in his short professional tenure. The way he is throwing a September call up as a left handed specialist is not out of the question.
Surprisingly, injury prone big name prospects like Manny Banuelos (8) and Slade Heathcott (18) made the list but Jose Pirela’s name is no where to be found. He is just a few months older that Heathcott and Jose A. Ramirez, so age should not be a factor. He has also been incredibly consistent at two positions the Yankees are in need of in second base and right field. His bat seems to be major league ready and while his glove needs some work, his omission from this list was a bit shocking.
Long time list toppers Tyler Austin (17) and Mason Williams (19) move way down the list to make room for more of the new younger generation of Yankees. Red hot hitting catcher Luis Torrens came in at number 11. Torrens just had his 21-game hitting streak snapped but adds to the already deep catcher position in the system.
The Yankees prospect list still does not possess what scouts feel is elite status, but with the abundance of stars with a little under two years worth of experience, the Bombers are clearly heading in the right direction. Whether they are used as trade chips or future Yankees will be the decision of the front office but clearly this farm system is on the up after several years in a downward spiral. It will be exciting to watch this new generation grow.