1. Cooper Bowman
While plenty of attention was paid to 2021 first-round shortstop Trey Sweeney’s arrival in Hudson Valley — and that attention was justified by his thunderous bat — fellow 2021-drafted infielder Cooper Bowman, selected in the fourth round, flew a bit under the radar.
Chosen out of Louisville, home of recent standouts Will Smith of the Dodgers and Nick Solak, selected by the Yankees, Bowman posted an .835 OPS and earned a quick promotion to Low-A Tampa out of rookie ball in his 2021 debut. Though he only made a three at-bat cameo at big-league spring training this winter, people noticed; he drilled two hits, one of them a three-run homer to the opposite field against the Detroit Tigers.
So far, that power and poise has translated to High-A action, as Bowman has remained rock steady in an infield that’s also included Rumfield and Sweeney (when healthy). In 13 games, he’s bumped that OPS to .857, pounding a pair of homers, knocking in 10 runs, and walking 11 times.
Bowman profiles as a potential future MLB second baseman/utility asset, and already seems proficient at attacking the zone, while taking the bases that are handed to him. Another infielder in the Yankees’ preferred mold who just might be able to echo Josh Smith’s path after he was traded to the Rangers in the Gallo deal? The Yankees will take all the potential reinforcements they can get.