New York Yankees Top 20 PRE-SEASON Prospects in Review
This list was originally published December 28, 2008. This is a review of the PRE-SEASON list for 2009, not a revision of that list. This is a REVIEW of the old list. I'm not doing new grades or lists until I start working on the 2010 book.
1) Jesus Montero, C, Grade B+: Season ended early due to injury, but hit .337/.389/.562 between Class A and Double-A before getting hurt. Outstanding bat, defense still questionable.
2) Austin Jackson, OF, Grade B: .298/.355/.404 with 23 steals in 27 attempts for Triple-A Scranton. Power development mediocre, but does other things well.
3) Dellin Betances, RHP, Grade B-: 5.48 ERA with 44/27 K/BB in 44 innings for Class A Tampa, 48 hits allowed, before going down with Tommy John surgery.
4) Austin Romine, C, Grade B-: Hitting .274/.321/.433 with 12 homers for Class A Tampa. Needs to tighten the strike zone as he moves up.
5) Zach McAllister, RHP, Grade B-: 2.31 ERA with 95/31 K/BB in 113 innings for Double-A Trenton, 94 hits. A pretty solid strike-thrower.
6) Mark Melancon, RHP, Grade B-: 2.89 ERA with 54/11 K/BB in 53 innings for Scranton, just 37 hits. Has done OK with 11 major league innings, though command hasn't been as good with six walks.
7) Jairo Heredia, RHP, Grade B-: Just 38 innings combined between GCL Yankees, Charleston in the Sally League, and Tampa. 3.32 ERA with 31/7 K/BB combined numbers. Need to see at higher levels with more data.
8) Andrew Brackman, RHP, Grade C+: 6.08 ERA with 100/76 K/BB in 104 innings for Charleston, 104 hits. He's been terrible overall, though has done better after moving to relief. Command remains a huge problem.
9) Phil Coke, LHP, Grade C+: 5.06 ERA with 41/18 K/BB in 53 innings for the Yankees, 42 hits. Needs to cut back on the home runs, but I think he's capable of better than this.
10) Alfredo Aceves, RHP, Grade C+: 3.88 ERA with 53/12 K/BB in 67 innings for the Yankees, 58 hits. A decent utility pitcher perhaps capable of taking a larger role.
11) Wilkin de la Rosa, LHP, Grade C+: 3.48 ERA with 77/41 K/BB in 83 innings for Trenton, 67 hits. Good stuff, needs to improve command.
12) Humberto Sanchez, RHP, Grade C+: Still recovering from injury, has pitched 33 innings between Tampa, Trenton, and Scranton, combined numbers 3.86 ERA with 34/14 K/BB, 21 hits allowed. Still has strong K/IP and hit rates.
13) Jon Albaladejo, RHP Grade C+: Very strong in Triple-A, 1.54 ERA with 24/3 K/BB in 35 innings 24 hits. Weak in the majors, 5.61 ERA with 17/12 K/BB in 26 innings, 29 hits. Like Coke and Aceves, I think he's a useful arm.
14) David Robertson, RHP, Grade C+: 3.46 ERA with 58/21 K/BB in 39 innings for the Yankees, 34 hits. Control could use some work but love the strikeout rate.
15) Brad Suttle, 3B, Grade C+: Out all year with shoulder injury.
16) Arodys Vizcaino, RHP, Grade C+: 2.13 ERA with 52/15 K/BB in 42 innings for Staten Island in the New York-Penn League. Out since August 8th with a back injury.
17) Christian Garcia, RHP, Grade C+: 0.71 ERA with 24/17 K/BB in 25 innings for Trenton. Out since June 10th with elbow injury.
18) George Kontos, RHP, Grade C+: 3.35 ERA with 39/21 K/BB in 51 innings for Scranton. Out since June 25th with elbow injury.
19) Kanekoa Texeira, RHP, Grade C+: 2.82 ERA with 85/40 K/BB in 99 innings for Trenton, 88 hits and a 2.40 GO/AO. Needs better command but looks interesting.
20) Eduardo Sosa, OF, Grade C+: Raw tools guy hitting .200/.280/.291 for the GCL Yankees. Further evidence not to highly rate players merely on the basis of hot scouting reports from Latin America.
21) Eric Hacker, RHP, Grade C+: Traded to the Pirates, 4.08 ERA with 77/44 K/BB in 110 innings for Triple-A Indianapolis, 129 hits. Looks like a Quadruple-A type.
The Yankees started the season with one excellent prospect in Montero, a solid guy in Jackson, and a bunch of B-/C+ types who may or may not develop into something. Injury attrition has torn through the pitchers. Brackman has yet to live up to New York propaganda hype, and there is a distinct lack of impact talent beyond Montero. On the other hand, Robertson has been strong, I haven't given up on Coke, and Aceves is certainly capable of contributing in a major league bullpen going forward. Melancon, McAllister, and Teixeira are all potential contributors for 2010 or trade fodder.