The New York Yankees are days away from the 2022 Major League Baseball amateur draft, and selection speculation around the league is heating up. This year, the Yankees come a bit late to the buffet table, scheduled to make their initial selection 25th overall.
The top 25 draft prospects ranked by MLB Pipeline features a total of 17 position players and 8 pitchers, all with first-round capabilities. The Yankees’ top 30 prospect list consists of 14 pitchers and 16 position players.
If the team decides to shoot for a big-game arm first overall, there are a few solid options on the list.
Yankees: 3 Pitchers to consider in first round of 2022 MLB Draft
3. RHP Gabriel Hughes, Gonzaga
This right-hander out of Gonzaga is one to be excited about. Gabriel Hughes has emerged as a staple in the Gonzaga rotation and could be one of the highest pitching draft picks out of this school. He stands at 6-4 and 220 pounds off the mound as a former two-way player. With consistent velocity ranging 94-96 MPH with a 97 MPH max fastball, Hughes is projected to eventually reach the triple digits. He works with two main off-speed pitches, with his out pitch being an effective slider ranging between 89-90 MPH, and a good changeup, often located low with late drop.
Hughes shows off his athleticism with an ideal body type and strong arm. He’s repetitive in his delivery, with a high leg kick and consistent finish. In three college seasons, Hughes racked up a total record of 12-8 with 3.05 ERA, striking out 218 batters while walking only 73, and only giving up 9 home runs. With a stint in the Northwoods League and West Coast League, his numbers totaled at a 13-9 record with a 3.58 ERA, 245 strikeouts, 91 walks, and 1.239 WHIP in 201 innings. This kid would be a solid arm in the Yankees organization.