New York Yankees 2019 Top 50 Prospects

Estevan Florial - photo credit Scott Greene, @Scotty_Ballgame

New York Yankees Top 50 Prospects for 2019

The New York Yankees currently possess one of the most exciting farm systems in the major leagues. While they lack top tier talent that lies within the Top 20 of leading publications, they make up for this with extreme depth. The one profile that defines their prospect group is athletic, right-handed pitchers with prototypical builds, high-velocity fastballs, and a breaking ball that flashes plus. One will find a host of different names on this list that fit that description. Another thing that “Cashman & Co.” have done well lately is signing International players. There are a lot of raw projects with 70-80 grade tools that are hiding deep in the rookie and short-season rosters. Since 2014, the Yankees are known for being one of the most dominant teams on the International market every year. They even signed a large group of teenagers during the last J2 signing, of which I ranked the Top 5 at the end of this article.

The major league roster is never allowed to be in a full rebuild since it is the Yankees. Therefore, a focus on raw talent is critical due to the lack of room on their 40-man roster for higher floor options. Most of the pitchers in the system have repertoires that will play up in the bullpen for flexibility. The timeline is extended on younger prospects in this system because of this allowance for full development without rush. A lot of these names may be used as trade bait with the upcoming championship window looking wide open in the Bronx. Impressively, most of their talent was either signed or drafted by the organization, which gives fans an extra level of trust in leadership that seems to win more trades than they lose.

I also want to give a HUGE shout out to the team at Prospects1500 for putting these together every year as one of the strongest resources around. Also, big thanks to Jason Woodell for providing so many quality videos all season. Check out his YouTube/Twitter for more, as all of the footage in this article is credited to Jason.

Okay, let’s get into it!!


Prospects 1500 Tiers:
Tier 1: Players with high expectations of both making the majors and playing at an all-star level for a number of years
Tier 2: Players with an above average expectation of making the majors and being a solid contributor
Tier 3: Players with an average expectation of making the majors and being a solid contributor
Tier 4: Players who have the potential of making the majors, or have high likelihood of making the majors but providing minimal impact (e.g. middle reliever, low ceiling UT guys)
Tier 5: Players who are worth keeping an eye on, but likely to never make a teams 40-man roster


Tier 1:

None. The New York Yankees farm system oozes with young, International stars with tons of upside, but shallow floors. The player that fits our Tier 1 description the most would be Estevan Florial. However, it is easy to see a situation where he struggles in the majors due to an extremely aggressive approach. They traded away the only other player that may have found themselves in this tier, Justus Sheffield. Included in the trade for James Paxton, Sheffield looks to be a long reliever, or back-end starter, with frontline potential if everything breaks right. Our very own Joe Rush ranked young lefty as the Seattle Mariners new #1 prospect.


Tier 2:

1. Estevan Florial, CF
Age: 21
Highest Level: A+
2018: 374 PA, .283/.377/.422, 6 HR, 16:10 SB:CS, 12.8% BB%, 24.6% K%, 130 wRC+
There are still five tools, lying somewhat dormant, in this profile. Nevertheless, Florial seems overlooked among those outside of the New York Yankees front office. He remains one of the untouchable International talents in the organization and since trading Justus Sheffield, the clear #1. Struggles stemming from poor pitch recognition, long swings, and injuries keep Florial under the radar for the potential that he provides. Through all of this, Florial delivers speed and power at a ridiculous level. Wrist surgery took away nearly two months last year. Upon return, Florial put up better numbers than he did earlier in the season. A lot of his success came in the rehab stint at rookie level, but he ended the year with a high BB%, 2 HR, and 6 SB in 160 PA. I would love to see him start the season at AA, selfishly so I can see him play in the Eastern League. Either way, Florial is a mainstay in the organization and cherished commodity for what Jason Woodell called, some of the “loudest tools in the minors.”

2. Jonathan Loaisiga, RHP
Age: 24
Highest Level: MLB
2018 Minors: 6-1, 56 IP, 67:8 K:BB, 2.89 ERA, 3.04 FIP, 1.16 WHIP
2018 Majors: 2-0, 24 IP, 33:12 K:BB, 5.11 ERA, 3.53 FIP, 1.54 WHIP
Here we have a bit of a mystery. I would never compare someone to the greatness that is Juan Soto, but Loasiga made the second largest leap to the bigs last season. Clearly, there is something to be said about the jump from A+ to the MLB in just 14 starts. In fact, the totality of his career leading up to his promotion to Pinstripes was 157.2 innings including 68.2 IP for the San Francisco Giants Dominican League team in 2013. He’s impressing the Yankees brass quickly and drastically with a mid-90s fastball, no-joke curveball, and a changeup that is advanced for someone with his lack of history. The feel is there for all three pitches and showed useful command in the minors before a shaky ML debut. His underlying numbers were respectable for New York, and his 30.3% K% against major league hitters is impressive for even the highest touted prospects. Loasiga already has everything he needs in his arsenal. The more he harnesses the command and break of his pitches, the more he can affect the game with tunneling and sequencing. He showed maturity at the upper level and the ability to move between starting and long-relief that should be extremely useful to the Yankees this year. I think the upside could be a #3 starter at some point. His poise combined with the lack of experience is very valuable, and when you watch him pitch, you can see why it works.

3. Mike King, RHP
Age: 23
Highest Level: AAA
2018: 11-5, 161.1 IP, 152:29 K:BB, 1.79 ERA, 2.76 FIP, 0.91 WHIP
Another aggressively promoted Yankees prospect, King moved from A+ to AAA in 2018. Coming to New York via Miami as a throw-in for the roster shedding move that sent Garrett Cooper and Caleb Smith to the Marlins, Cashman acquired the well-built right-hander along with International Slot money. The stats he provided last season, along with the incredible command he’s shown, created a trade commodity the Yankees never expected. King’s changeup still needs to prove itself at the higher levels, and the strikeout rate decreased from level-to-level due to its lack of movement. However, he can command the offering and repeats delivery and arm speed to maintain the deception. He should see major league time this year, whether it’s in New York or in another city remains to be seen. The upside is a back end starter with a four-pitch arsenal that generates weak contact and a low WHIP.

4. Domingo Acevedo, RHP
Age: 24
Highest Level: AAA
2018: 3-3, 69.1 IP, 55:21 K:BB, 2.99 ERA, 3.22 FIP, 1.11 WHIP
Last season is one to forget for one of the best prospects in a deep system. Acevedo is a physical anomaly on the mound, standing around 6’8″, 250 lbs. In 2018 he was limited due to injuries and overall health concerns that the Yankees would naturally have for one of their prized possessions. He pitched over-130 innings the season prior and was phenomenal before hitting AAA. I fully expect a bounce back this year that should include major league time, considering he is on the 40-man roster. He has a developed arsenal of three plus-pitches, one being a fastball that has been graded from 70-80 depending on the publication. Everything is there for a top-of-the-rotation type talent if all breaks right, but durability may push him to one of the better long-relief, back-end bullpen options in the League.

5. Clarke Schmidt, RHP
Age: 22
Highest Level: A-
2018: 0-3, 23.1 IP, 30:6 K:BB, 3.09 ERA, 2.61 FIP, 0.94 WHIP
Schmidt recovered from Tommy John to return last season after being the Yankees first-round pick in the 2017 draft. An advanced college pitcher with command of a four-pitch arsenal that is built to generate swing-and-miss. His slider, curveball combination both work at different speeds and planes of movement to go along with a fastball consistently around 92-93 MPH and a changeup with feel. The more he works back from injury, the quicker he will move through the system due to his experience and overall polish. With a full bill of health, he could end up as a #3 starter someday but should easily end up in a rotation with his extensive repertoire of pitches and high-level of command. Injuries could keep him as a #4-5 though.

6. Everson Pereira, OF
Age: 17
Highest Level: Rk
2018: 183 PA, .263/.322/.389, 3 HR, 3:2 SB:CS, 8.2% BB%, 32.8% K%, 88 wRC+
This International prospect is more of a project at this point, but everything points to an everyday outfielder with tremendous upside. Still only 17-years-old turning 18 on April 10th, Pereira was the biggest signing of the 2017 J2 period when he inked a $1.5m signing bonus. Extremely raw, but calm and mature at the plate, he will need to focus on pitch recognition just as anyone would at this age. The power, speed, and overall feel for baseball are undeniable. His full potential looks a lot like Estevan Florial‘s, and could quickly become the #1 prospect in this system after another year or two of proper development.

7. Roansy Contreras, RHP
Age: 19
Highest Level: A
2018: 0-2, 63.1 IP, 60:21 K:BB, 2.42 ERA, 3.70 FIP, 1.03 WHIP
Contreras possesses a projectable frame at 19-years-old and two plus pitches in his high-velocity fastball and tightly breaking curveball. The changeup is a bit behind, which makes sense in this raw state, but the development of his other two offerings is staggering thus far. In 2018, he shot up internal prospect boards and started to gain some league-wide hype after he dominated Short Season-A ball. The command is further ahead than most of their other International arms. Overall Contreras should move quickly next season and could continue to improve his floor which currently looks like a dominant high-leverage relief option. His upside continues to blossom and going into the season as a back-end starter with high strikeout potential.

8. Anthony Seigler, C
Age: 19
Highest Level: Rk
2018: 95 PA, .266/.379/.342, 1 HR, 0:0 SB:CS, 14.7% BB%, 12.6% K%, 108 wRC+
Everyone knows the gripping narrative behind the Yankees ambidextrous first-round pick from 2018. What people are overlooking is that this is a high-school catcher with an advanced feel for the game that is evident to anyone that watches him. The current state of his bat lacks a lot of power and speed that you want to see in the fantasy baseball world. However, scouting reports from the 2017 Perfect Game circuit stated that natural loft could be seen in the swing from both sides of the plate. He has an athletic build that shows behind the plate with swift footwork and a quick jump. Seigler’s pitching arm now affects the game with potentially the strongest throw-down from last year’s draft. He will be a starting catcher in the league one day with this defense, which is extraordinary to say for a high-school catcher, but the upside in the bat remains to be seen.

9. Luis Medina, RHP
Age: 19
Highest Level: Rk
2018: 1-3, 36 IP, 47:46 K:BB, 6.25 ERA, 6.46 FIP, 2.17 WHIP
Yes, the numbers are gruesome. Medina still possesses some of the highest upsides of any pitcher in the system. If he can somehow figure out any kind of command, then he becomes a top-of-the-line starter. The narrative is the same as most of these Yankees International arms, big fastball, projectable body, two off-speed offerings that flash plus. With Medina, those off-speed offerings are a devastating hammer curve, a decent changeup that can get movement around 91 MPH, and the fastball can easily hit 97-99 MPH. He is very unsafe, but with rose-colored glasses, you can see what New York brass sees in this young arm.

10. Chance Adams, RHP
Age: 24
Highest Level: MLB
2018 Minors: 4-5, 113 IP, 113:58 K:BB, 4.78 ERA, 4.87 FIP, 1.41 WHIP
2018 Majors: 0-1, 7.2 IP, 4:4 K:BB, 7.04 ERA, 8.77 FIP, 1.57 WHIP
In 2017 there was a lot of hype for Adams to see some time in the bigs after dominating the minors with some unsustainable ERA numbers. If you’re stat scouting the profile, last year is more appropriate for what to expect out of his future profile. At the moment, Adams looks to be a back of the rotation option for the Yankees as he fights for the “Luis Cessa” role this year. If he gains a little more command, he will immediately increase his upside. Adams can already miss bats when necessary and generates plenty of soft contact with a pair of plus offspeed offerings in the slider and curveball. If the command begins to improve he can become a capable #3 with high strikeout potential.

11. Deivi Garcia, RHP
Age: 19
Highest Level: AA
2018: 5-4, 74 IP, 105:20 K:BB, 2.55 ERA, 2.60 FIP, 0.95 WHIP
Garcia shot onto the radar this year beginning with an aggressive full-season assignment to start 2018. He cruised through 40.2 innings at A ball posting a near-14.00 K/9. The pitchability is astounding at such a young age. The 19-year-old has underwhelming size and velocity, but the movement and command of the fastball make it a plus pitch. He is poised and controlled on the mound without a violent delivery that would cause any excess injury worries. For his age, he is one of the more developed right-handed pitching prospects in the league. If he continues his streak into 2019, you will see his name pop-up on mid-season Top-100 lists.

12. Antonio Cabello, OF
Age: 18
Highest Level: Rk
2018: 192 PA, .308/.427/.522, 5 HR, 10:6 SB:CS, 14.1% BB%, 20.8% K%, 168 wRC+
Another coveted International signing, Cabello brought back $1.35m of the slot money in 2017. Brought in alongside Everson Pereira and tooled up to a similar level of insanity. Cabello is currently making a transition from catcher to centerfield. His athleticism is rarely matched, and the speed/power combination might be stronger at the moment than it is with Pereira. They both have a ton of work to do in polishing the approach, but Cabello also showed maturity at the plate with the inconsistencies that any 18-year-old would have in his professional debut. He tore up the GCL and created a more stellar stat-line than Pereira, but still have the positional instability against his profile.


Tier 3:
13. Trevor Stephan, RHP

Age: 23
Highest Level: AA
2018: 6-9, 124.1 IP, 140:38 K:BB, 3.69 ERA, 3.60 FIP, 1.13 WHIP
Stephan gives the Yankees another prototypically built RHP with a funky 3/4 delivery and two plus pitches. The changeup lags behind, like many of their prospects, but this is another high-upside relief arm with #3-4 upside if that third offering comes along. His 97-98 MPH fastball has some serious cut and the slider can miss bats. It’ll take a lot for him to break into the front line of a rotation, yet he projects to be an interesting option with that heater.

14. Josh Stowers, OF
Age: 21
Highest Level: A-
2018: 244 PA, .260/.380/.410, 5 HR, 20:4 SB:CS, 15.2% BB%, 23.4% K%, 126 wRC+
Jerry Dipoto sends Brian Cashman a new toy in a three-team deal involving the Reds receiving Sonny Gray and minor league reliever Reiver Sanmartin. Mariners got their own interesting piece in Shed Long. However, Stowers provides more of what the Yankees are looking for with their tight 40-man roster. The 2018 2nd rounder out of Louisville provided some solid seasons in the ACC before impressing in his professional debut. After the draft, he posted 5 HR, 20 SB, and a .380 OBP in Short Season-A ball. His swing still has some more untapped power in it and is very quiet in the lower half. The speed is legit, and the approach is polished.

15. Josh Breaux, C
Age: 21
Highest Level: A-
2018: 114 PA, .269/.289/.352, 0 HR, 0:0 SB:CS, 3.5% BB%, 18.4% K%, 88 wRC+
The Yankees 2nd-round pick from the 2018 draft was also a catcher. In Breaux, they got more of a muscle-head with tons of raw power in a larger body than their 1st rounder, Seigler. However, he is more unfinished behind the plate and may move to another position at some point, despite reports of an absolute cannon. The power numbers were insane in JuCo, and he could provide a 25-30 HR bat if the game power and hit tool develop properly.

16. Matt Sauer, RHP
Age: 20
Highest Level: A-
2018: 3-6, 67 IP, 45:18 K:BB, 3.90 ERA, 3.93 FIP, 1.16 WHIP
A slightly younger version of the standard Yankees pitching prospect. Tall, right-handed, and at 19-years-old he posses a projectable frame that already comes with a lot of power. He pumps a mid-90s fastball that can reach the upper-90s with a late-breaking curve and a changeup that’s far behind. He was a highly touted high-school arm drafted over slot in the 2017 2nd-round, so the Yankees clearly saw something they liked. Being younger in a system that develops a ton of prospects in a similar build makes Sauer slightly more intriguing as an upside play. At 19, he could find a way to build something extra that kicks him into the front of a rotation, but at the moment his ceiling/floor situation is the same as all of these other big, two-pitch, right-handers.

17. Garrett Whitlock, RHP
Age: 22
Highest Level: AA
2018: 8-5, 120.2 IP, 122:41 K:BB, 1.86 ERA, 3.01 FIP, 1.11 WHIP
Drafted 542nd overall in 2017, the Yankees may have found one of the better pitchers in the class. Whitlock has deceptive arm action with two pitches that flash plus to fit the mold of most of the other young RHP. His fastball rides around 93-94 with some arm-side run, the slider looks sharp, and he plays both off of each other very nicely. Being that he was a college arm, the polish he’s shown professionally provides a floor that some of the International guys don’t have. However, being further along on the timeline also means that the upside is not as high as some of the teenagers. Whitlock is steadily in the middle of these names with the upside of a #3 starter or a premium back-end relief option.

18. Luis Gil, RHP
Age: 20
Highest Level: A-
2018: 2-3, 46 IP, 68:31 K:BB, 1.96 ERA, 3.55 FIP, 1.37 WHIP
Gil is an International arm, with a projectable body, that can already touch triple digits. Add him to the long list of guys with a inconsistent, yet devistating, breaking ball and barely any changeup. If that third pitch continues to lag behind then the bullpen will be his contingency plan, and could enhance the pitches that he already possesses. Given the age, and experience, there is still a lot of time for the Yankees and Gil developmentally to work out the kinks and increase the consistency of his offspeed pitches.

19. Albert Abreu, RHP
Age: 23
Highest Level: AA
2018: 4-6, 72.2 IP, 74:32 K:BB, 5.20 ERA, 4.75 FIP, 1.38 WHIP
This season is pivotal for one of the highly praised arms in the Yankees system. Prospectors labeled his upside as a front-end rotation option, but his struggles with hittability have plagued the development in the past few years. His fastball can sit at 97-98 MPH and gets hit throughout the zone as hitters do not have trouble picking up significant velocity with no movement. Playing this pitch off an effective curveball and changeup should be a recipe for results. Abreu can still reach his potential if he puts his foot on the gas. However, I am becoming more pessimistic as time passes and think that this eventually becomes a bullpen arm with nasty stuff.

20. Ben Heller, RHP
Age: 27
Highest Level: MLB
2018: Tommy John Recovery
Heller gets forgotten a bit amongst all of the talented arms within this system. Nevertheless, he fits the mold that most of these guys have, but he actually has some MLB experience. He will be making his return from Tommy John in 2018 and may very well end up right back in the bullpen at some point. His fastball can consistently hit the high-90s, and it has a mean bite to it that can confuse even major leaguers. Heller’s slider is a useful option as well, but the changeup is a distant third offering. It makes his ceiling very low as a 27-year-old returning from surgery, but that fastball/slider combination can be deadly in the pen and allows them to trade guys like Chad Green or Jonathan Holder if Heller is performing in Scranton to start the year.

21. Stephen Tarpley, LHP
Age: 25
Highest Level: MLB
2018 Minors: 7-2, 69.2 IP, 71:26 K:BB, 1.94 ERA, 3.23 FIP, 0.96 WHIP
2018 MLB: 0-0, 9 IP, 13:6 K:BB, 3.00 ERA, 2.27 FIP, 1.33 WHIP
This lefty had an inside track on being the 2nd southpaw in the bullpen behind Aroldis Chapman. That plan was ruined when Zach Britton signed in the offseason. However, the Yankees trusted Tarpley enough to put him on the 25-man playoff roster against Boston, and I don’t disagree with their decision. His profile screams back-end starter due to the extreme ground ball rate and vast repertoire of pitches. His sinker/slider combination induces weak contact, but the curveball/changeup need to improve to make starting a reality. Starting the year in Scranton will help him refine these pitches, but pitching in the bigs will require an injury or a trade.

22. Phillip Diehl, LHP
Age: 24
Highest Level: AA
2018: 2-3, 75.1 IP, 108:23 K:BB, 2.51 ERA, 2.24 FIP, 1.04 WHIP

On the midseason Top 50, Jason Woodell claimed Diehl to be “definitely the best RP” he’d seen “all year.” He pounds the zone and relies on a changeup that drops right under the barrel of the hitter at the last second for swing-and-misses. The deception he gets on his arm action allows a low-90s fastball work a lot better than it sounds, plus it is coming from the left-side of the mound. He will turn 25 this season, but should see a bulk of his time at AA and above to prepare for a potential role at the back-end of a Yankees bullpen that is still short of left-handed depth.


Tier 4:
23. Juan Then, RHP

Age: 18
Highest Level: Rk
2018: 0-3, 50 IP, 42:11 K:BB, 2.70 ERA, 3.22 FIP, 0.98 WHIP
Another piece of the Nick Rumbelow deal, that also brought JP Sears to the Yankees, Then is going into his 19-year-old season and what projects to be his first above rookie ball. He already throws in the low-90s with a smooth delivery due to his athletic frame. Still small, and only 6’1″ so the ceiling is low, Then can easily add 20+ lbs to his current weight. The breaking ball and changeup don’t generate too much swing-and-miss just yet, but they show promise. He relies more on his command, which is also very advanced for his age. Then could find his way shooting up organizational lists next year if he continues his promising development.

24. Nolan Martinez, RHP
Age: 20
Highest Level: A
2018: 4-4, 61.2 IP, 41:25 K:BB, 3.36 ERA, 4.19 FIP, 1.14 WHIP
The Yankees 3rd-rounder from 2016 is the only one of their top three picks still in the system. He’s dealt with injuries in the past, including a shoulder problem that prevented him from pitching much at all in his 2nd year with the team. Martinez came back last year to mixed results, but still has a projectable frame in a young body that has a lot of development time ahead. 2019 will be a year where he sees some higher levels, hopefully, more innings, and further development on his secondary offerings to match his high-velo, high-spin fastball.

25. Thairo Estrada, SS
Age: 22
Highest Level: AAA
2018: 81 PA, .192/.210/.231, 0 HR, 0:0 SB:CS, 0.0% BB%, 21.0% K%, 21 wRC+
The word that quickly describes one of the Yankees first hyped International signings would be: “solid.” He’s a decent hitter, with a sound approach, not too much power or speed, won’t be a perennial Gold Glover, but also won’t be a net negative. If he does add more power, which isn’t entirely out of the question, Estrada may produce value for a fantasy league. However, he seems to be a stock-standard, middle-infield utility player with the skills to play above-average shortstop and hit for a decent average.

26. Anthony Garcia, OF
Age: 18
Highest Level: Rk
2018: 217 PA, .218/.300/.456, 10 HR, 3:0 SB:CS, 10.6% BB%, 40.6% K%, 107 wRC+
This 18-year-old is an absolute behemoth at 6’5″, 240 pounds. Garcia signed in 2017 and put together one of the most hyped 2018 seasons in the lower levels. He hit 10 home runs in his first 44 games as a pro and flexed that raw, unadulterated power. It is entirely too early to overreact about this hot start, but it does prove the 80-grade raw power. His development is still catching up to his body and he has plenty of time to work out the kinks and really utilize this massive frame.

27. Freicer Perez, RHP
Age: 22
Highest Level: A+
2018: 0-4, 25 IP, 20:19 K:BB, 7.20 ERA, 6.08 FIP, 1.88 WHIP
After losing most of 2018 with shoulder problems, Perez looks to attack the mound again in 2019 with his incredibly large, 6’8″ frame. He struggles to find control often. The repertoire includes a fastball that can touch triple digits, a slider that also flashes plus and a third option that doesn’t deserve much recognition. Another stock of pitches that would be more effective in the bullpen although I can see why the Yankees would try everything they could to get a talent like this into the rotation. He came along in the 2014 class with Dermis Garcia, Wilkerman Garcia and Hoy Jun Park, so it is quite the pivotal year for him in his development at 23-years of age.

28. Canaan Smith, OF
Age: 19
Highest Level: Rk
2018: 171 PA, .191/.281/.316, 3 HR, 0:0 SB:CS, 11.1% BB%, 30.4% K%, 81 wRC+
Striking 2018 from the record, Smith is still a 19-year-old prospect with tons of raw power. He’s shown patience at times despite the massive struggles in Staten Island. It was an aggressive promotion, but the outfielder did dominate high school and rookie ball in 2017. He debuted in the GCL and posted more strikeouts than walks in a 237 PA sample that included 10 2B, 5 HR, and 5 SB. These numbers are hard to ignore in a profile that still projects for a lot of potential upside. The ceiling can be a three-true-outcome darling that can stick in LF with his stocky build. There are reports that he actually makes some astoundingly athletic players in the outfield for a kid who has some weight. Still raw, but 2019 will be a telling tale for what to expect in the future.

29. Ezequiel Duran, 2B
Age: 19
Highest Level: Rk
2018: 235 PA, .201/.251/.311, 4 HR, 7:0 SB:CS, 3.8% BB%, 27.7% K%, 48 wRC+
There is a lot of work to be done with this 20-year-old signee out of the Dominican Republic. The Yankees may have stolen a bright young talent for just $10K in the 2017 J2 period, but Duran showed struggles in Pulaski this season. He possesses enormous raw power and very little patience. Projected to stick at 2B, he provides a ton of middle infield power with some speed and agility on the bases which is very enticing. 2019 will be a big year in his development. Last year he struggled with an aggressive promotion which may cause the Yankees to pump the brakes. He remains a fascinating prospect.

30. Dermis Garcia, 3B
Age: 21
Highest Level: A
2018: 363 PA, .241/.320/.444, 15 HR, 3:2 SB:CS, 9.9% BB%, 30.6% K%, 117 wRC+
Huge raw power in this young International prospect that is transitioning to 1B full time despite having a pretty strong arm at 3B. He has a lot to clean up in the aggressive approach but incredible bat speed to make up for a lot of issues. Garcia even experimented with pitching at the end of 2018. While never reaching any game action, he did show a lot of promise with a high-velocity fastball. Who knows what the future holds there, but the bat still provides a high-HR, low-AVG ceiling.

31. Harold Cortijo, RHP
Age: 20
Highest Level: A-
2018: 4-1, 51.1 IP, 60:12 K:BB, 2.63 ERA, 3.29 FIP, 1.09 WHIP
Drafted out of high school in 2017, Cortijo put together a couple of seasons of effective development. The command is advanced for his age, and he relies on that more than his fastball velocity. His best secondary pitch is his changeup which separates him from other prospects in this system, as well. Cortijo should creep onto more radars this season as people become aware of the other guys ahead of him and look for the deeper names. If he continues to hone the command and adds consistency to his curveball, then he could end up in the rotation someday.

32. Hoy Jun Park, 2B/SS
Age: 22
Highest Level: A+
2018: 421 PA, .258/.387/.349, 6 HR, 18:5 SB:CS, 16.2% BB%, 16.4% K%, 122 wRC+
Signed the same season as Wilkerman Garcia, Park will be entering his 23-year-old season and fifth overall with the Yankees organization. Over his career he has produced some impressive numbers, relying on advanced approach, pitch recognition, and speed. Most people associate a low average and high OBP with a three-true-outcome power performer. However, Park replaces that power with speed and does not look to hit home runs. He can provide some pop and may grow into more, but his left-handed swing is driven more to slash the ball and jump out of the box to utilize his best asset. He’s been tested at different infield spots, and reports say that his arm outplays the glove. This year will most likely begin for him in AA and creates an interesting position for New York next year who may need to decide if he stays with the team.

33. Raimfer Salinas, OF
Age: 18
Highest Level: Rk
2018: 48 PA, .108/.313/.135, 0 HR, 4:3 SB:CS, 14.6% BB%, 20.8% K%, 60 wRC+
Raw, international outfielder with tons of raw power that didn’t quite show in the results of his debut. Still plenty of time to develop and is one of the more recent signings where the Yankees have focused on big, athletic hitters. Salinas is another in this mold that should show us a little bit more in next season’s sample.

34. Jose Villa, 3B
Age: 20
Highest Level: Rk
2018: 139 PA, .386/.417/.583, 2 HR, 5:3 SB:CS, 1.4% BB%, 19.4% K%, 179 wRC+
Villa restarted last season in the Dominican Summer League. However, this 2016 International signing quickly proved that he was ready for the GCL and proved it by slashing .371/.397/.543 at that stop. He should grow into more power despite not having one major tool or a body that screams raw power. The feel for the barrel is advanced. Needs to tame the aggressiveness to find his pitch more often and turn the raw power he has into game power. Villa could very well stick at 3rd and produce a 20/15 type bat in the future with a decent average if the approach becomes refined.

35. Ronny Rojas, 2B
Age: 17
Highest Level: Rk
2018: 231 PA, .169/.342/.350, 5 HR, 4:2 SB:CS, 19.5% BB%, 40.3% K%, 108 wRC+
Still too young to write-off just yet, Rojas showed some decent tools in his professional debut. He remained in the Dominican Summer League and did not hit above .200, but he did slug 8 2B, 5 3B, and 5 HR displaying a little bit more raw power than previously expected. He’s known for being labeled one of the best hitters in the 2017 International class by MLB Pipeline. There is gap-to-gap power as a switch hitter lying within this profile. Projecting to repeat rookie ball, he will turn 18-years-old in August. Rojas has years to develop all of his tools at the plate, while his defense is average enough to keep him in the middle infield longterm.


Tier 5:
36. Wilkerman Garcia, 2B/SS

Age: 20
Highest Level: A
2018: 520 PA, .218/.274/.305, 6 HR, 16:7 SB:CS, 6.7% BB%, 20.2% K%, 67 wRC+
Highly touted International signing out of Venezuela that still needs a lot of work going into his 21-year-old season. To reach his ceiling of a useful utility player, Garcia will need to tame his aggressive approach at the plate. Still young and early in his development makes this a possibility. He does have good raw power from the left side but remains a switch-hitter to enhance his versatility.

37. Nick Nelson, RHP
Age: 23
Highest Level: AA
2018: 8-6, 121.2 IP, 144:63 K:BB, 3.55 ERA, 3.12 FIP, 1.32 WHIP
Another internal draft pick, the 12th rounder possesses a couple plus pitches that would work very well in a bullpen capacity. Nelson has a high-velocity fastball that needs more command and a breaking ball that is built to generate swing-and-miss. The problem here is control, which wouldn’t be much of an issue but the Yankees seem steadfast on leaving him as a starter. Going into his 23-year-old season, he will start at AA presumably as a rotation option. Rumors of him harnessing a slider and refining his changeup in 2018 will be tested next season at the higher levels.

38. Jio Orozco, RHP
Age: 21
Highest Level: A
2018: 1-3, 46 IP, 36:13 K:BB, 4.50 ERA, 3.80 FIP, 1.22 WHIP
This young arm came from the Mariners in the Ben Gamel trade. Orozco has a plus fastball that sits in the low-90s with movement and two offspeed offerings that still need development in the curveball and changeup. They are serviceable pitches, and currently, the curveball flashes decent spin with the arm speed on the changeup being very deceptive. Could develop into a potential starter at some point, but projects to be a useful relief option.

39. Ryder Green, OF
Age: 18
Highest Level: Rk
2018: 95 PA, .203/.316/.392, 3 HR, 3:2 SB:CS, 11.6% BB%, 36.8% K%, 101 wRC+
The 3rd-rounder from this past year’s draft is a raw outfield talent with a ton of power potential. Green will need to refine his approach and pitch recognition. When he gets a hold of something he can take it for a ride, no pun intended, with a balanced right-handed swing that has a natural loft. His plus bat speed is not generated by any funky pre-swing mechanics, just a slight leg kick for timing purposes, and he has a refined feel for his weight distribution. There is also speed, average defense, and a strong arm attached to this profile that makes his ceiling even more exciting.

40. Brandon Wagner, 1B
Age: 23
Highest Level: AA
2018: 518 PA, .267/.380/.461, 21 HR, 2:1 SB:CS, 13.5 BB%, 26.1% K%, 143 wRC+
Wagner displayed more game power at a higher level than ever before in 2018. This performance earned him a promotion to AA by the end of the season, which is where he should begin next year. He has a quick, left-handed swing that is still working on laying off the breaking stuff. There is a good barrel here in a 1B prospect that is going underrated by prospectors.

41. Diego Castillo, 2B/SS
Age: 21
Highest Level: A+
2018: 514 PA, .260/.307/.324, 2 HR, 11:4 SB:CS, 5.8% BB%, 9.1% K%, 83 wRC+
Castillo was brought in during that same 2014 International period, along with many other recognizable names on this list. Defensively he is sound at either spot in the middle infield. The power hasn’t shown up in the statistics, although Castillo does own raw strength and superb bat control. To develop more game power he will need to move his batter’s eye forward slightly and start recognizing his pitch earlier. Next year will be the real test as he should step up to AA at some point.

42. JP Sears, LHP
Age: 22
Highest Level: A
2018: 1-5, 54 IP, 54:11 K:BB, 2.67 ERA, 4.04 FIP, 0.91 WHIP
Sears was part of the return from the Mariners for Rumbelow. He has a deceptive left-handed delivery with stuff that will play up in the bullpen. In fact, his numbers were pretty nasty in Seattle when he debuted as a reliever with 51 strikeouts in 27.2 IP. The Yankees are attempting to stretch him out, but he missed time last year due to a shoulder injury. 2019 could see a return to the pen where New York is currently low on lefty options.

43. Glenn Otto, RHP
Age: 22
Highest Level: A
2018: 1-1, 10.1 IP, 8:7 K:BB, 3.48 ERA, 5.21 FIP, 1.45 WHIP
Ceiling as a high-end reliever with a low chance of joining the rotation unless he fully develops the changeup, or another third pitch. Otto is a physical specimen at 6’5″, 220 pounds and generates natual power with his fastball. The curveball flashes plus and drops off the table in a 12-6 motion. Yankees continue to try him as a starter since draft day. The stuff will play up better in a relief capacity.

44. Stanley Rosario, OF
Age: 18
Highest Level: Rk
2018: 191 PA, .208/.298/.351, 4 HR, 2:2 SB:CS, 9.9% BB%, 23.6% K%, 86 wRC+
The New York native was actually an International signing for the Yankees in 2017. Rosario made his debut last season along with a ton of other athletic prospects picked up during that period. The rawness will need to be developed, as it does with any of these players. Defense is not really a standout feature here. All of his value lies within refining the bat and utilizing his sweet, short, left-handed swing.

45. Adonis Rosa, RHP
Age: 24
Highest Level: AAA
2018: 14-6, 128.1 IP, 108:36 K:BB, 3.93 ERA, 3.81 FIP, 1.33 WHIP
Rosa possesses one of the few profiles in the Yankees system that relies on command and pitchability rather than velocity and sharp breakers. New York took their time with this 2013 International signing. He spent the last two seasons climbing from A+ to AAA in both seasons in what seems to be a deliberate developmental process. Rosa pitched a career-high innings last season and displayed evidence of being an intriguing piece of organizational depth this season. His pitches aren’t necessarily plus offerings, which hinders his ceiling, but he utilizes them well-enough to raise his floor to an average bullpen piece or swingman.

46. Anderson Severino, LHP
Age: 24
Highest Level: A+
2018: 2-3, 45.2 IP, 39:17 K:BB, 3.74 ERA, 2.88 FIP, 1.58 WHIP
Definitely not the brightest of resumes, but the older International prospect can still get a lot of velocity out of a small, left-handed body. With a PED suspension on the record, Severino is working his way back into relevancy with that big fastball, as well as a curveball that flashes plus quite often. He is older and futher along on the timeline, but the stuff is nasty.

47. Steven Sensley, OF
Age: 23
Highest Level: A+
2018: 421 PA, .249/.330/.449, 17 HR, 2:4 SB:CS, 9.0% BB%, 26.8% K%, 122 wRC+
The 362nd pick of the 2017 draft is displaying plenty of power at the lower levels of the minors since debuting professionally. There is a lot of strength in an athletic body without much projection left if any at all. Sensley still looks like he can grow into a 20-25 HR bat with a decent average stemming from a lot of hard contact. If the approach becomes more advanced his value increases. He does have a sweet left-handed swing with extreme athleticism as a calling card. However, he hasn’t shown speed on the base path and profiles more as a 4th OF without much impact defensively.

48. Isiah Gilliam, OF
Age: 22
Highest Level: A+
2018: 520 PA, .259/.313/.397, 13 HR, 4:5 SB:CS, 6.9% BB%, 29.0% K%, 103 wRC+
Here is a strong, athletically built outfielder with a strong arm to stick at a corner outfield spot. Drafted as a raw talent out of Chipola College, Gilliam needs to harness his pitch recognition to really develop his game power. In his current state he could rail off 20+ HR next year, and I would not be surprised one bit. Without making strides in the discipline, all of this athleticism will go to waste as another 4th OF option with switch-hitting versatility off the bench.

49. Pablo Olivares, OF
Age: 20
Highest Level: A
2018: 276 PA, .322/.391/.442, 6 HR, 10:4 SB:CS, 7.2% BB%, 16.7% K%, 142 wRC+
This Venezuelan product has tools across the board without providing anything above average. The hit tool and outfield defense may be the closest couple to surpass the median. The speed is decent, and Olivares is still young enough to grow into a more powerful stroke. He should start this year in the FSL with the ability to move quickly if the home runs start to flow. For now, he projects as a high-floor batting average piece for outfield depth.

50. Evan Alexander, OF
Age: 20
Highest Level: A
2018: 207 PA, .257/.382/.456, 5 HR, 11:4 SB:CS, 13.5% BB%, 30.4% K%, 124 wRC+
Alexander is a tall, athletic lefty with long legs that generate excellent speed on the basepaths. Pinstripe Prospects has him clocked at a 4.10 home-first time. He needs to improve his approach like any other raw prospect in this system. The profile is athletic enough to stick in centerfield, but that is a big ask for anyone going into their 21-year-old season with barely any experience above rookie level. Response to promotion will be the real test to see the young outfielder’s ceiling. There is also some raw power within the bat that is still undeveloped.

Top 5 International Singings from 2019

1. Osiel Rodriguez, RHP
Age: 16
Signing: $600,000 (Cuba)
Reports of advanced pitchability for such a young age. Can tunnel with a 95-97 MPH fastball already and is said to be refining his approach to three pitches at the beginning of his development. Could shoot up lists very quickly.

2. Antonio Gomez, C
Age: 16
Signing: $600,000 (Venezuela)
Gomez is a sweet-swinging Venezuelan, as so many of them are, but catching could use improvements. Any 16-year-old will be raw behind the plate. He has a strong arm and decent skills with the gloves that should improve with time and patience.

3. Mauro Bonifacio, OF
Age: 17
Signing: $800,000 (Dominican Republic)
One of the bigger bodied prospects in this class was actually supposed to sign in 2018. He waited an extra year and inked a deal with the Yankees this offseason. The defense is average for his size, but all the potential here lies within his lightning quick bat and 6’5″, 200 pound build.

4. Kevin Alcantara, OF
Age: 16
Signing: $N/A (Dominican Republic)
Alcantara gets a lot of love for his defense, but scouts also tout his ability to make hard contact with such a small frame. The body is very projectable and is still reported of topping 100 MPH of exit velocity on record.

5. Denny Larrondo, RHP
Age: 16
Signing: $550,000 (Cuba)
Offers a tight curveball and a 92-93 MPH fastball in a projectable frame. Baseball America had him as the 43rd overall prospect, which is a fair placement for a Cuban pitcher not named Osiel Rodriguez. It will be interesting to see his first professional videos.

 

“The Fringe-stripes”

Kyle Holder, 2B/SS
Age: 24
Highest Level: AA
2018: 206 PA, .257/.317/..350, 3 HR, 1:3 SB:CS, 7.3% BB%, 10.2% K%, 88 wRC+
A 1st Round selection from 2015, Holder just hasn’t displayed the kind of ceiling you would hope. He is extremely athletic with the body of a big point guard. If he ever taps into some of the raw power that seems to be natural with his build, then he will start to shoot through the minor leagues. 2019 looks like he should stick in AA for a while to see what happens with that rawness. The approach is advanced, he makes a ton of contact, and the defense is probably the strongest asset in the profile. Holder can be exciting if he shows that one extra tool in the power department. However, he may end up in the bigs as a defensive replacement with contact skills.

Jhalan Jackson, OF
Age: 25
Highest Level: AA
2018: 398 PA, .206/.297/.413, 17 HR, 7:2 SB:CS, 9.5% BB%, 37.7% K%, 97 wRC+
Jackson is getting a little long in the tooth. However, he provided enough game power to keep himself exciting for at least one more year. The discipline needs to be a lot better, but his strength is apparent. Jackson also plays solid defense with a strong arm that can stick in right. He needs to do a lot more development with the bat in a short amount of time to stay relevant again through 2019.

Austin DeCarr, RHP
Age: 23
Highest Level: A
2018: 1-1, 36 IP, 39:25 K:BB, 3.50 ERA, 4.64 FIP, 1.47 WHIP
DeCarr is a prep arm that is struggling since returning from Tommy John surgery in 2017. Once a high upside name who signed for an above-slot price of $1m in 2014, he is now falling down a path with zero command and zero repeatability in delivery. The latter is especially dangerous for a pitcher who claims to have “two curveballs” to create more deception in speed and batter’s eye. If any semblance of control enters the picture, we could be looking at a decent relief arm with mid-90s velocity and some interesting offspeed pitches. He is only turning 24-years-old this season and promotions will be rapid if he finds something that clicks.

Mandy Alvarez, 1B
Age: 24
Highest Level: AA
2018: 421 PA, .256/.314/.438, 13 HR, 2:1 SB:CS, 7.1% BB%, 12.8% K%, 108 wRC+
The former 3B has found a new home at 1B, which is one of more significant weakness in the Yankees system. His bat is consistent with a good feel for the barrel. Alvarez will need to tap into more game power to create a higher ceiling. A high-floor is evident due to his contact ability and defensive competence. He should begin next season at AA, which will give me, even more, looks to see any extra potential that may lie within the profile.

Greg Weissert, RHP
Age: 23
Highest Level: A+
2018: 4-4, 60.2 IP, 86:28 K:BB, 3.12 ERA, 3.13 FIP, 1.25 WHIP
Weissert has a stocky 6’2″ frame with a lot of thickness in the bottom half. He uses strong drive onto his front leg to get as much velocity as possible, usually around 92-94, and a 3/4 delivery to get more deception on the spin. The slider is his best offering. This pitch generates a lot of swing-and-miss at the lower level and tunnels well with an arm action that creates more elevation on the fastball. It is an outstanding second pitch, serving him well in the bullpens of the lower minor league levels. He can definitely make a major league bullpen with refinement and command of these two offerings to make them an exceptional 1-2 punch. The upside is low, he will never make a rotation, but it’s easy to see where he could fit in a future pen.

Jason Lopez, C
Age: 20
Highest Level: A+
2018: 324 PA, .272/.313/.430, 8 HR, 7:3 SB:CS, 5.2% BB%, 21.0% K%, 111 wRC+
Can show patience at the plate, despite having a raw approach overall. Displayed power and speed in the SAL last season with some promise for the future projections of his bat. He is athletically built with a potential to stick behind the plate longterm. Still, a long way to go on the development path to make that call. The profile is exciting if he does stay behind the plate.

About Paul Martin 25 Articles
Paul Martin graduated from the University of Connecticut with a double degree in Political Science and American Studies. After college the drive to become a baseball writer became real when Lenny Melnick asked for a podcast substitute. Ever since late-2017, Paul has been providing content for LennyMelnickFantasySports.com, Razzball, Pitcher List, and now Prospects1500. Living in the Connecticut area there are plenty of options for minor league coverage with the closest team being the Hartford Yard Goats. This die-hard Yankees fan has transitioned into a well-rounded cover of all things fantasy baseball and prospects.

4 Comments

  1. Yankees also signed SS Alexander Vargas out of Cuba for over $2 million this year any report on him and another catcher Saul Torres signed back in 2016 or 2015.

  2. Thanks for your work on this. Deivi Garcia at #11 in this system seems pretty far off. He is a #1 or #2 on other scouts/sites and in top 100 now.

    • He might be a bit low, but your statement is false. He didn’t make BA, BP, or MLB top 100s, while FG, ESPN, and Sickels have not come out. Not sure what sites you are looking at. As for Top 10 in the system, BA has him at #6, while BP, FG, Sickels, MLB, ESPN have not been released. PL has him at #3, 361 at #11, Razzball didn’t make the Top 10.

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