Yankees prospects 21-30 through May

In the last two days, I ranked and analyzed the Yankees’ top 10 prospects and 11-20 through the first two months of the season. Today’s installment looks at prospects 21 through 30.

#21 Jake Cave

Age: 21
Position: Center Field

MonthLevelBB%K%ISOBABIPLine
AprilA+5%19%.112.365.290/.327/.402
MayA+8%16%.097.396.336/.400/.434

Down

After a strong 2013 campaign, Jake Cave has thrived this season as well. He’s likely gotten a little lucky on balls in play, but its hard to ignore his .314/.366/.418 batting line.

Cave’s still a ways away, but he’s done a good job of getting on base at every stop so far. He also has plus speed and is expected to be able to stick in center field long-term. Given his defensive prowess, he could develop into a very good player if he keeps on hitting, especially if can start hitting for a little more power. In Jacoby Ellsbury and Brett Gardner the Yankees already have two lefty-hitting center field types locked up long-term. Cave may serve as trade bait before he gets a chance with the Yankees.

#22 Ty Hensley

Age: 20
Position: Right Handed Pitcher

MonthLevelK%BB%GB%ERASIERA
AprilInjuredN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
MayInjuredN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A

Down

Ty Hensley has barely pitched since the Yankees chose him with their first round pick back in 2012. After throwing all of 12 innings in 2012, he 21-year-old missed all of last season with a right hip impingement that necessitated hernia surgery.

Hensley’s supposedly close to returning, and will likely join one of the short-season teams later this summer. He had a lot of promise coming out of high school, but all of these injuries have really dimmed his prospect star. Its anyone’s guess how he’ll rebound from his injury woes.

#23 Miguel Andujar

Age: 19
Position: Third Base

MonthLevelBB%K%ISOBABIPLine
AprilA10%17%.125.318.263/.341/.388
MayA5%18%.111.195.182/229/.293

DownMiguel Andujar fell on some rough times in the last month following an impressive start to the year. There isn’t much to like about Andujar’s recent performance, especially when its come to getting on base.

Andujar’s all tools at this point, and fact that he’s even playing full-season ball says a lot about what the Yankees think of him. Still, it would be great if he were able to show some signs of life with the bat. He’s still raw defensively, as well, and has made more than his share of errors (.905 fielding%) at the hot corner. Hopefully he can straighten things out because it’s hard to envision his bat ever being good enough to play at a less premium position. His odds aren’t great, though, as many minor league third basemen end up at first or in the outfield.

#24 Mark Montgomery

Age: 23
Position: Right Handed Pitcher

MonthLevelK%BB%GB%ERASIERA
AprilAAA28%14%48%0.823.83
MayAAA30%19%56%3.754.35

DownMark Montgomery was nearly unhittable all the way through double-A, but hasn’t been quite as dominant since joining triple-A Scranton last year. Walks have been the primary culprit, but even the strikeout numbers aren’t quite what they were in the low minors.

Montgomery’s almost ready for the show, and has been for a couple of years now, but his command is what’s holding him back. He probably won’t be the top-notch reliever suggested by his stats from the low minors, but he should still be a reliable bullpen arm in the near future.

#25 Caleb Smith

Age: 22
Position: Left Handed Pitcher

MonthLevelK%BB%GB%ERASIERA
AprilA27%12%50%0.842.99
MayA26%10%26%2.053.56

 

Down

Caleb Smith has been dominant for class-A Charleston, posting a sparking 1.51 ERA, while whiffing more than a batter per inning. He’s cooled off a little of late, but has yet to have a really bad start.

Smith was taken in the 14th round last summer, so this performance has pretty much come out of nowhere. Naturally, this means there’s a decent chance its just a flash in the pan. In any case, he’ll probably get the bump up to class-A Tampa this year if he continues to pitch well. He’s still a ways away from the majors, but is definitely worth keeping an eye on. He could be a diamond in the rough.

#26 Danny Burawa

Age: 25
Position: Right Handed Pitcher

MonthLevelK%BB%GB%ERASIERA
AprilAAA44%19%50%0.002.70
MayAAA24%7%69%2.452.13

Down

Danny Burawa has tremendous stuff, but up until this year, his minor league performance has been more good than great. He’s been lights out so far in 2014 though. Despite missing a couple of weeks with an oblique issue, he’s struck out 23 batters in 17.2 innings out of the bullpen.

At 25, Burawa’s a little old for a prospect, and as a reliever, his upside is pretty limited. Still, he’s a guy who can light up the radar gun, and could easily be a factor out of the big league ‘pen as soon as this summer.

#27 Dante Bichette Jr.

Age: 21
Position: Third Base, First Base

MonthLevelBB%K%ISOBABIPLine
AprilA+17%17%.119.394.321/.442/.440
MayA+7%18%.235.256.255/.316/.490

He looked like a total waste of a first-round pick heading into the year, but Dante Bichette Jr. has fared very well following a promotion to class-A Tampa. After two years of not hitting a lick, Bichette’s hit an impressive .285/.376/.468 this year, and is beginning to re-established himself as prospect.

Bichette’s breakout is promising, but the sample size is still pretty small, so he very well could be playing over his head. Still, it’s encouraging to finally see some signs of life out of his bat. Despite his recent performance, it’s not clear if he’ll ever hit enough to be a first baseman or corner outfielder, so hopefully he’s able to stick at third base.

#28 Nick Goody

Age: 22
Position: Right Handed Pitcher

MonthLevelK%BB%GB%ERASIERA
AprilInjuredN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
MayA+36%7%40%3.482.14

Down

Nick Goody out up video game numbers out of the bullpen in 2012, but was forced to sit out all of 2013 after undergoing Tommy John surgery. He’s back pitching this year, and has continued the dominance, striking out 36% of hitters.

As great as Goody’s been, he’s a still reliever, which means he can only have so much value long-term. We’ll see how he fares in the upper levels of the minors, but his performance to date suggests he could be a top-notch reliever a few years down the road.

#29 Tyler Wade

Age: 19
Position: Shortstop

MonthLevelBB%K%ISOBABIPLine
AprilA12%19%.049.375.296/.376/.346
MayA8%29%.084.351.243/.299/.327

Down

After a successful stint in class-A Staten Island, the Yankees promoted Tyler Wade to full-season ball for 2014 — an aggressive move considering Wade graduated from high school just last spring. Wade’s held his own in Charleston, hitting .265/.333/.332, while splitting time between shortstop, second base, and DH.

By no means is Wade a sexy prospect. In fact, he isn’t even the most exciting shortstop in Charleston — that distinction belongs to Abi Avelino. Still, it’s good to see that Wade’s managed to hold his own despite being two or three years younger than much of his competition.

#30 Eric Wooten

Age: 24
Position: Left Handed Pitcher

MonthLevelK%BB%GB%ERASIERA
AprilA+17%4%65%2.303.17
MayA+/AA14%6%47%3.624.44

Down

Eric Wooten feasted on A-ball hitters, but hasn’t been as dominant since his promotion to double-A Trenton. Still, his body of work since the Yankees scooped him out of independent ball has been pretty impressive: 2.41 ERA and a 51% ground ball rate in 116 innings.

Wooten’s pretty much the definition of a fringe prospect, and will certainly never be a front-line starter. He does induce a good amount of grounders, which has worked for him so far — and would play well in Yankee stadium. Lefties have hit just .165/.171/.223 off of Wooten since he joined the Yankees’ organization, so at the very least, he could have a future as a lefty specialist.

 

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