Yankees Prospects Who Can Sneak Into the Top 10 This Season

Hoy Jun ParkAt this point we’ve covered all top 10 Yankees’ prospects one way or another. New York has a lot of starters (Brady Lail, Ian Clarkin and James Kaprielian) who have high upside, a load of middle infield options (Kyle Roller, Tyler Wade, Julio Mateo, Rob Refsnyder) and of course, Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez, an outfielder and catcher with perhaps the highest ceilings.

So what about the players without top 10 prospect spotlight? New York has some names who can make a leap forward on the system internally. We’re going to exclude names such as: Slade Heathcott, Mason Williams, Bryan Mitchell and Nick Rumbelow (all between 11-30) because if any of them play well in the minors they will immediately be in the majors anyway, so re-evaluating their prospect status would seem irrelevant.

Hoy Jun Park (#14): Another shortstop in a farm system full of them, Park is just 19 and played rookie ball last season. As part of a major international prospect shopping spree, Park offers excellent defense and speed, similar to Tyler Wade, but younger and perhaps with a higher offensive ceiling. In his first 222 professional at bats, Park worked a .351 OBP, had 19 extra base hits and stole 12 bases against mostly older competition. He’s likely at least three years away, but a strong year in A ball could make Park move up a few spots, especially as Judge, Sanchez and Lindgren become ineligible if they are called up.

Dustin Fowler: (#15): No relation to Dexter, but a high profile outfield talent nontheless. Dustin was drafted in the 18th round of the 2013 draft, an afterthought of a draft which also included: Eric Jagielo (recently traded for Aroldis Chapman), Ian Clarkin (#5 prospect), Aaron Judge (#1 prospect) and Tyler Wade (top 10 prospect). Fowler is a 21-year-old lefty who hit .289/.328 in A ball while stealing 12 bases. He can play all three outfield positions, all with plus defense in addition to offering quality speed. Fowler projects as a 15 HR type of bat with speed on the bases and if he can continue to work on his pitch selection, he could be a 21-year-old OF in the top 10 of Yankees’ prospects.

Luis Cessa (#16): You may recall Cessa’s name recently, as he was acquired over the winter in exchange for Justin Wilson in a trade with the Tigers. Cessa is a path less followed; a former shortstop from Mexico who has turned into a starter with a mid 90’s fastball and three pitches, the secondary ones still developing. At 23-years-old and just now dabbling with AA, Cessa is a little behind in terms of development (mainly due to the position change) but he shows promise with good control and a live arm and is projected to be a MLB quality starter, albeit a back-end starter. If Cessa can take a step forward with his secondary pitches and establish himself in AA this season, he could be a former Mets’ pitching prospect who shows promise as pitching depth for the Yankees.

Miguel Andujar (#18): Andujar played in A ball as a 20-year-old and offers more power than a lot of the higher caliber prospects in the system. An international signing, Andujar, hit .319/.367 the second half of last season, making adjustments and showing an absolutely arm  as a 3B for any minor league system. Andujar is a work in progress defensively, committing 51 errors in 196 pro games including rookie ball, but he has the potential to offer power and speed. If Andujar can demonstrate improvement on defense and pick up where he left off the second half of last season at the plate, he can make serious jumps due to his raw talent.

Domingo Acevedo (#25): The biggest stretch of anyone on this list, but with the raw talent to back it up. Acevedo has not progressed past A ball in over two years with just 49.2 professional innings due to a tired arm among other issues, one of which is likely due to his 6’7″ frame. Acevedo is a monster on the mound, but like Andrew Brackman before him, a lot of enormous starters have issues panning out and generally take longer to put it together. Nevertheless, the arsenal is there. Acevedo can throw 100 MPH the hardest fastball in the system, a major league changeup and a developing slider. Depending on if the slider can come to fruition, and if Acevedo’s arm can support its power (he has about a 240 LBs frame so that’s not an issue), it could decide if Acevedo pans out. If he does, it could be either as a future closer, or an ace based on his abilities, even at the age of 22, which he will turn before the season begins.


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