New York Yankees top prospect Anthony Volpe has spent his first big-league spring training popping off the screen, showing any remaining skeptics why he's considered a top-10 minor-league talent in the game as well as the leader of the Yankees' future.
His first showcase came on Sunday in Dunedin, when he turned a line-drive single into a hustle double with ease, later stealing two bases (one on a pitchout) on consecutive pitches.
On Wednesday against the Nationals, in his second home game of the season, he showed off his athleticism with the glove via a diving robbery, then also displayed his baseball IQ by cutting down the lead runner (and eventually getting two) on a routine grounder.
On Thursday, his power tagged along for the ride to Bradenton. Volpe ambushed presumptive Pirates Opening Day starter Mitch Keller with a long home run to left-center, which registered 99.1 MPH off the bat. Are you not entertained?!
Yankees SS Anthony Volpe slugs leadoff home run vs Pittsburgh Pirates
Keller has been widely hailed as a breakout candidate, too, thanks to his top-tier fastball and burgeoning arsenal. Well, not so much, on this particular day. Instead, he gets added to Volpe's ledger of victims, which also includes 101 MPH-throwing Blue Jays top prospect Nate Pearson, who gave up the hard liner "double" to right.
Volpe is unlikely to make the Opening Day roster, but he still relished the chance to show Yankee fans what the future could look like on Thursday, lining up at second base alongside Oswald Peraza at shortstop and Oswaldo Cabrera at third. If that alignment gets unveiled during the regular season, fans might just lose it -- you know, like a Volpe drive off Keller headed for the bushes beyond the ballpark.
Not present today? Gleyber Torres, who had a tooth extraction. Sadly, it's probably not the last time he'll have to watch Volpe star from the sidelines.