MLB Pipeline, Baseball America prospect ranking updates don't show massive gap between Yankees, Red Sox

Hudson Valley Renegades outfielder Spencer Jones during media day on April 5, 2023.

Renegades Media
Hudson Valley Renegades outfielder Spencer Jones during media day on April 5, 2023. Renegades Media / Patrick Oehler/Poughkeepsie Journal /

According to Boston Red Sox acolytes, GM Chaim Bloom might be taking things slow at the big-league level, but below the surface, he's revolutionized the farm, bringing a bottom-tier unit to the top of baseball. According to those same acolytes, the New York Yankees' future is below the level of the dirt; their prospect power has eroded over the years to the point of non-competitiveness.

According to the experts at Baseball America and MLB Pipeline? The gap may not be as large as previously theorized. In fact, it might not exist at all?

FanGraphs' system rankings, published midsummer, are big believers in the Sox, placing them fourth overall in MLB, below only the moribund and always-drafting-first Nationals, Cubs and Pirates (notice how everyone else's favorites, the Rays, are ranked ninth by this outlet). The Yankees? FanGraphs is the least interested, by far, in what they have to offer, ranking them 25th overall. Seattle, the team that gutted their inner workings to acquire Luis Castillo while the Yankees sat back and watched? 24th. Bummer.

But if Boston fans tuned out when FanGraphs assessed them -- and, believe me, they did, considering their highest ranking is the only one I've heard cited so far in Swampscott, Southie and on the set of "The Town" -- then they might want to check out the prospect-specific rankings from Pipeline and BA.

Yankees, Red Sox have competitive showings on Baseball America, MLB Pipeline Top 100 Prospect Lists

If only Bloom were in New York to sign Corey Kluber and Joely Rodriguez ... then, maybe, the Yanks could REALLY get this thing poppin' off!

Perhaps most notably, MLB Pipeline knocked Marcelo Mayer out of their Top 10 overall and ranked him 11th, behind several incoming draftees (and, frankly, several incumbent prospects who've passed him). Mayer is quite likely to be a future star, but the love for his underwhelming 2023 season at Double-A has now subsided quite a bit (.189/.254/.355 with a .609 OPS). Boston fans want to blame that lack of productivity entirely on his low BABIP (.220) and shoulder injury, believing -- because they want to! -- that he harbored pain for all 43 games. Fine. Believe what you want. But after moving up the list to No. 3 due to graduations ahead of him, Mayer has now slid back down, well behind Orioles wunderkind Jackson Holliday, who's taken over the No. 1 spot. Mayer is a tier or two behind him. Finally.

Otherwise? Pipeline's list featured rapid-rising Red Sox outfielder Roman Anthony at No. 37, then ranked Ceddanne Rafaela and 2023 draftee Kyle Teel at 78 and 88. The Yankees? They wound up with three players represented (Oswald Peraza is no longer eligible, by Pipeline's standards), ranking 79th, 80th, and 81st. The difference between the two systems, per Pipeline, essentially comes down to two higher-upside players (and, remember, Anthony Volpe and Peraza have both graduated). Advantage Boston, but not by the same margin as FanGraphs believes.

And what about Baseball America, in many ways the more trusted of the two publications (and the magazine that scouts Rookie League ball far more extensively than Pipeline does)? That's where the Yankees' strength currently lies, and BA provided a lot of requisite love for the Bombers. Seven Yankees made Baseball America's new Top 100, while only four Sox made the list. Mayer, again, found himself stuck at No. 16, with Anthony nipping at his heels at No. 20. The injured Miguel Bleis ranked 82nd, while Teel debuted at 95; Rafaela was not mentioned.

Again, Boston has the upside advantage here, but the Yankees had their hoarding rewarded. Peraza, who remains eligible for this list, topped the group at No. 57, while Chase Hampton (58), Jasson Dominguez (64), Everson Pereira (79), Austin Wells (85), Spencer Jones (86) and Roderick Arias (97 and sure to rise next year) followed behind. Prior to the 2020 season, the Yankees only had three prospects crack that list -- Jasson Dominguez (38), Clarke Schmidt (62) and Deivi Garcia (65).

Boston fans can say whatever they'd like, but according to the (non-FanGraphs) experts, Bloom's farm mastery consists almost entirely of hypnotizing three stupider teams into letting Mayer fall into their lap and hitting on Anthony. The Yankees have built up more depth; Boston wound up with a potential pair of crown jewels. Seems pretty even to me, especially as Dominguez continues to break out?