In the last two days, I ranked and analyzed the Yankees’ top 10 prospects as well as prospects 11-20 through the first three months of the season. Today’s installment looks at prospects 21 through 30.
#21 Luis TorrensAge: 18
After missing two months with a shoulder injury, Luis Torrens returned to game action a couple of weeks ago. Torrens originally broke camp with Class-A Charleston, but is now with Short-Season Staten Island after a brief stop in the Gulf Coast League.
Torrens hasn’t hit much since his return, but at 18, he has plenty of time to hone his skills.
#22 Gosuke KatohAge: 19
Position: Second Base
Gosuke Katoh got off to a terrible start this year, but has been hitting progressively better ever since. Although he’s still striking out too often, his numbers are no longer embarrassingly bad. That’s progress, at least.
Although he seems to have made some much-needed adjustments, Katoh still has a long way to go. His June strikeout rate of 30% is still unacceptable, especially for a hitter with such little power.
#23 Ty HensleyAge: 20
Position: Right Handed Pitcher
Ty Hensley sat out most of the last two years with injuries, but is finally pitching again. The Yankees are understandably taking things slow with Hensley, limiting to just two appearances and five innings so far. He had a lot of promise coming out of high school, but all of these injuries have really dimmed his prospect star, and its anyone’s guess if he’ll be able to rebound.
#24 Nick GoodyAge: 22
Position: Right Handed Pitcher
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 38% of hitters between Hi-A Tampa and Double-A Trenton.
As great as Goody’s been, he’s 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 develop into a top-notch reliever sooner rather than later.
#25 Taylor DugasAge: 24
Since he was drafted in 2012, Taylor Dugas has posted exceptional plate discipline stats at ever minor league stop and this year’s been no exception. Dugas slashed an impressive .294/.403/.424 at Double-A Trenton before a recent promotion to Triple-A Scranton.
At 24, Dugas is a little old to be just arriving in Triple-A, but his on-base numbers speak for themselves. Dugas will probably never be much of a hitter, but he can draw a walk and runs well enough to be useful in the outfield. The last thing the Yankees need is another punchless lefty outfielder, but that’s exactly what Dugas is — and he’s very close to being big-league ready.
#26 Jorge MateoAge: 19
2012 international signee Jorge Mateo had a very impressive stint in the Dominican Summer League last year, which earned him a trip to the United States this year. The shortstop has hit very well in his first eight games in the Gulf Coast League. Most impressive is that he’s gone a perfect 10 for 10 on the base paths.
Mateo’s tools are obvious. He’s stolen a remarkable 59 bases in 72 games between this year and last, and has even hit seven homers to boot. He still has a long way to go, but could develop into a lethal power/speed threat – something that would be extraordinarily valuable if he can stick at shortstop.
#27 Miguel AndujarAge: 19
Position: Third Base
It’s pretty clear that the Miguel Andujar is over-matched against Sally League pitching. The 19-year-old has struggled all year long, and has been exceptionally bad in the last two months, where he’s only managed a putrid .272 OBP.
Although he hasn’t hit a lick, it’s important to remember that Andujar’s quite young for his level, and that most players still in rookie ball at his age. Even so, he’s given us some concerns about his bat going forward. Andujar has great tools, but at some point you’d like to see those tools translate to on-field performance.
#28 Tyler WadeAge: 19
Tyler Wade hasn’t been great in his first full season, but has consistently held his own as a 19-year-old with Charleston. Although he’s hit for minimal power, he’s still managed to get on base at an acceptable .342 clip.
A fifth round pick from last year, Wade doesn’t have a tremendous prospect pedigree. Nonetheless, he mans a premium position and hasn’t embarrassed himself at the plate despite facing pitchers far better than he’d ever seen before. Still, he’ll likely struggle against upper-level pitching if he can’t figure out a way to hit for a little more power.
#29 Leonardo MolinaAge: 16
The Yankees’ big prize from last year’s international signing period, Leonardo Molina‘s getting his first taste of pro ball this year. Although he’s still a few days shy of his 17th birthday, the Yankees opted to start Molina in the GCL this year rather than in the DSL, where many international signees get their start.
Molina’s tools are supposed to be top-notch, which is why he netted a $1.4M signing bonus last year. He’s still über raw, but has plus-plus speed and is projected to be a good hitter as well. Most scouts foresee him developing into an excellent center fielder in time.
#30 Thairo EstradaAge: 18
The Yankees bumped 2012 international signee Thairo Estrada to Class-A Staten Island this year following a strong offensive showing in the GCL last summer.
Defense is Estrada’s calling card, but it’s encouraging to see that he’s not helpless with the bat. At 18, Estrada’s one of the youngest players in the New York Penn League, so any glimmer of life offensively will be encouraging.