Yankees: The Future is Bright in the Bronx
Everyone knows the New York Yankees are rebuilding. The only team to not sign a free agent this winter is looking to get younger in the next few years as big contracts such as CC Sabathia, Carlos Beltran, Mark Teixeira and of course Alex Rodriguez expire.
What a lot of Yankees fans do not understand however is how good the Yankees farm system really is. After being in Florida this past week to watch Spring Training games, it finally hit me, the Yankees farm system is good, really good.
Not only do they have 6-foot-7 outfielder Aaron Judge who shows tremendous power and Luis Severino who will be in the rotation in 2016, but the Yankees have speed, arms, and bats that show signs of the 1995-96 “Core Four.”
Judge, the teams No.1 overall prospect according to MLB.com launched an opposite field home run on Saturday against the Boston Red Sox in Tampa.
The No. 2 overall prospect in the system is Jorge Mateo. The 20-year old shortstop has incredible speed that resulted in 82 stolen bases between the South Atlantic League and the Florida State League last season. Mateo’s speed is eye opening and the young shortstop has power from gap to gap as well. He is a player to keep an eye on as he already has a triple and home run in Spring Training thus far.
Another Yankee is 2015 First Round draft pick James Kaprielian. The UCLA product is the Yankees No. 3 overall prospect and has impressed plenty early this spring. Kaprielian pitched two perfect innings against the Detroit Tigers on Friday. The 6-foot-4 righthander struck out two including Jose Iglesias and Ian Kinsler. Kaprielian had a fastball in the 94-96 MPH range. The righty is strong and is a prime example of the “new Yankee way.”
Along with these three is Rob Refsnyder, who started the AL Wild Card game last year for the Yankees. He will make his debut at third base on Sunday. Refsnyder is the Yankees No. 4 prospect and has great potential as well.
Gary Sanchez, who is likely the backup to catcher Brian McCann is another young player that could have a more immediate impact on the major league club. With the Yankees trading backup catcher John Ryan Murphy for outfielder Aaron Hicks, Sanchez becomes the guy to keep an eye on.
The Yankees also have Ian Clarkin, a left hander, Mason Williams who had flashes of stardom in 2015 before an injury, Bryan Mitchell a righty that could be a great asset to the bullpen, as well as Jacob Lindgren a left-handed reliever.
Lefty James Pazos and righty Nick Rumbelow are also key pitchers in the Yankees system that could help the bullpen out tremendously in 2016.
The Yankees improved this season with the additions of Starlin Castro, Aaron Hicks and of course Aroldis Chapman, but the farm system is so strong.