Much of the last year or so in New York Yankees land has been learning about the organization’s top prospects and getting excited for their future contributions to the team or assessing their value on the trade market when examining a blockbuster deal (we don’t really need to talk about Matt Olson any further).
A majority of the spotlight has been on top shortstop prospects Anthony Volpe and Oswald Peraza, in addition to outfielder Jasson Dominguez and pitcher Luis Gil (who we saw at the MLB level in 2021).
But perhaps fans have overlooked the other guys. This is an incredibly deep system. Just look at the Joey Gallo trade. The Yankees pretty much gave up top talent they would’ve lost this offseason had there been a real Rule 5 Draft (thanks, MLB). It was no skin off their back. At all.
On top of that, it seems a number of guys have already stepped up to fill those missing spots and exceeded the production of those who have departed. Look no further than pitcher Hayden Wesneski.
The Yankees’ No. 15 prospect (according to MLB.com) was spotted working out this offseason and although we only got to see one pitch from his latest session, it was enough to pump us up for 2022.
How about this heater from the right-hander?
Will Hayden Wesneski make the Yankees’ MLB roster at some point in 2022?
Don’t get it twisted, either. This isn’t Yankees Twitter getting overly excited for a prospect who has mere “upside” or “projectability.” Wesneski’s first full pro season came in 2021 and he absolutely plowed through the minor leagues.
After his pro debut in the rookie league back in 2019 as a reliever, Wesneski kicked off 2021 as a started at High-A Hudson Valley and made his way up to Triple-A by the end of the season. In 25 games (24 starts), he finished with a 3.25 ERA, 1.12 WHIP and 151 strikeouts in130.1 innings.
We can assume he’ll begin 2022 at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and have the chance to join the MLB squad in the middle of the summer. His arsenal consists of a fastball that sits 93-96 MPH, a changeup in the 85-89 MPH range, and a snappy curveball (78-83 MPH). MLB prospects guru Keith Law doesn’t doubt Wesneski’s ability as a starter, but said the righty might be “nasty” out of the bullpen.
If the Yankees’ No. 15 prospect made it all the way to the top of the minor leagues in his first full pro season, what do you think the rest of these guys can do?