Being Yankees super-prospect Jasson Dominguez must be a strange experience. First, you’re signed as a young teenager with the reputation for being a bigger-than-your-body physical freak. Then, the 2020 season gets wiped out by COVID, delaying your full-season debut way longer than anyone expected, resulting in a 2021 return to the diamond that’s … subpar, with select highlights.
Dominguez, an 18-year-old playing against experienced athletes, struck out a good deal in ’21, still made the Futures Game, and showed that his electric bat-to-ball skills could translate to competition, but might not be all the way there yet.
Then, in 2022, with the shine somewhat off the apple, Dominguez returned to Low-A and flourished by mid-May, cutting down on the whiffs and taking his walks. It earned him a promotion to High-A, where he’s been even better, showing off patience, power, and poise.
And yet, somehow, because of who he is, “playing very well as a 19-year-old” is also being viewed as sub-standard, encapsulated perfectly by some anonymous scout who spoke to Yankees agitator Randy Miller this week.
Somehow, this anonymous voice managed to slide praise into a paragraph attacking Dominguez’s swagger and claiming he might someday get out of shape, something nobody has any evidence of yet.
While Dominguez hasn’t reached the bigs in a rocket ship like Wander Franco, he’s made tangible progress in 2022. Tangible progress … is not enough for some people.
Yankees’ Jasson Dominguez gets ripped (and also praised?) by Anonymous Scout
Hey, who’s willing to bet this “anonymous scout” works for the Cincinnati Reds, the team that just passed on a Dominguez-led package for Luis Castillo before flipping him to the Mariners? Or who’s willing to bet this “anonymous scout” is just the troublemaking author of the piece, Randy Miller, going almost Full Mushnick for clicks?
You might remember Miller from criticizing teenaged prospects like it’s his job (it isn’t), as well as stalking Clint Frazier through the minors to collect dirt, as Frazier admitted on a podcast after his Yankees release. Wouldn’t put it past him.
In 21 games in High-A, Dominguez appears to have made immediate adjustments after struggling to gain momentum at the lower levels (which also merited an “anonymous scout” column back in May). Though he’s only homered twice, he’s hitting .271 with a .402 OBP, .821 OPS, and a pair of triples. While it’s likely he’ll start 2023 at the same level (as a 20-year-old), hopes are he’ll progress to Double-A Somerset by midsummer, after two consecutive Futures Game-worthy seasons (he homered in this summer’s game in Los Angeles).
And yet … not Juan Soto yet, so not good enough for some people. Apparently, if he were a bit less full of himself, he might be in the Bronx displacing Aaron Hicks. That’s it. It’s now bad to feel good about yourself while succeeding.
Full disclosure: Randy Miller has blocked this author on Twitter, which is by far one of the most glorious blocks you can receive. Sadly, now, when an “anonymous scout” in a Randy Miller suit decides to make their bones by ripping a prospect who’s finally finding his sea legs, I have to find out second-hand.
Dominguez has plenty of time on his personal clock, and made tangible progress at two separate levels this season. That’s good enough for most. It’s not good enough for those who watch Yankees prospects like hawks, begging for slip-ups so they can posit that the volume’s too loud in their Air Pods.