He entered the minors with Mike Trout/Mickey Mantle/Bo Jackson expectations (from crazies, but still). Once he reached full-season ball, he delivered remarkably impressive statistics for his age, along with a few moments of full-fledged insanity that showed off his raw talents.
A .744 OPS in 49 games at Low-A, at the age of 18, is extremely impressive, even if Dominguez wasn't ready to Wander Franco his way to the MLB level. His 2022 campaign was even better; he beat the Randy Miller Allegations to triple-slash .273/.375/.461 across three levels, then dominate the Double-A playoffs, hilariously smacking a trio of home runs and driving in 10 runs in five games to win the Eastern League title.
For most patient Yankee fans (oxymoron), 2023's spring training showcase was his genuine coming out party. Freshly 20, Dominguez stuck around at big-league camp longer than expected, hitting .455 with four home runs and three walks in 25 plate appearances. He even tagged a relative brand name, Phillies postseason workhorse Connor Brogdon, for one of those bombs.
It would stand to reason that, after proving himself with all eyes upon him, that he would carry momentum into the regular season. But what did we tell you? Development isn't linear. That means, when Dominguez broke back out of his shell with a monster home run and a bases-clearing hit on Tuesday night, they were only his fourth and fifth hits of the season.
New York Yankees outfielder Jasson Dominguez's start to 2023 season has been straight outta space
Through 15 games, he has six hits. Two of them have left the yard. Maybe some of it's because of continuing adjustments. Maybe some of it's bad luck. But it certainly seems like some of it's because pitchers are scared. Dominguez's eye has been unaffected, because he's walked 17 times and has stolen 9 bases already.
That's a .130 average and a .359 OBP, one of the most alien lines you'll ever see to begin a season.
Dominguez's slow start has done nothing to change his long-term standing with the organization, though some of the folks who wanted him to make the MLB roster out of camp have probably seen the error of their ways (and have also watched Volpe's adjustment period play out). The fact that he's managed to remain patient while he's clearly gotten very few pitches to hit is admirable.
On Tuesday, his patience was rewarded. And, as payback for the early nicknaming, he landed a baseball on Mars.