Yankees farm system gets high praise in MLB Pipeline's midseason update

With a farm system on the rise, the New York Yankees are beginning to focus on the development of their baby bombers. As evidenced by Brian Cashman’s recent trades to acquire MLB-ready, young talent, and stockpile the talented youth in the minor leagues, it is pretty clear the Yankees are playing for the many years beyond 2016. After many seasons of gutting the farm system and being the consummate trade deadline buyer, we are witnessing a new strategy from the Yankees front office, and it is beginning to pay off.
Gleyber Torres Picture Credit: Tim Holle | Brevard County Manatees
26) Gleyber Torres (SS)
With the recent trade of Aroldis Chapman to the Cubs to acquire their top prospect, shortstop Gleyber Torres, The Yankees have a new guy atop their top prospect list. Torres has maintained his status as a top prospect, even with a new organization and he has boosted the Yankees farm system immensely. On MLB.com’s top 100 prospect list, Torres comes in at the number 26 prospect in all of baseball, which is ninth among a plethora of top shortstop prospects. Torres has continued his progression towards becoming an All-Star potential player as he jumped two spots from his preseason rank of 28. This year in 97 games in the minors, Torres is hitting to a .274/.356/.425 line with nine homers, 48 RBIs, 23 doubles, three triples, and 19 stolen bases. For more on Torres (after you read this of course), click here.

MLB.com quote: “If he has to change positions, he’d profile well offensively and defensively at either second or third base.”
Scouting Grades - Hit: 55 | Power: 50 | Run: 55 | Arm: 60 | Field: 55 | Overall: 55
Jorge Mateo Photo Credit: Mark LoMoglio | Tampa Yankees
27) Jorge Mateo (SS/2B)
Directly behind Torres at the number 27 prospect in all of baseball is Jorge Mateo. Mateo got off to an incredible start in Class-A advanced with the Tampa Yankees but has since slowed his rate of production. Mateo was the preseason number 30 prospect, so he has continued moving up, and he is the 10th ranked shortstop prospect in all of baseball. Interestingly, he is now listed as a shortstop and a second baseman, as he may begin projecting as a second baseman with his smaller frame, and competition from his teammate with the Tampa Yankees in Torres – although MLB.com says that he has the ability to stay at short. In 84 games in the minor leagues this year, Mateo has hit to a .255/.310/.387 slash line with six home runs, 39 RBIs, 11 doubles, eight triples, and 28 stolen bases.

MLB.com Quote: “He started drawing comparisons to Jose Reyes and teams immediately started asking for him in trade talks.”
Scouting Grades - Hit: 55 | Power: 45 | Run: 80 | Arm: 60 | Field: 55 | Overall: 55
Aaron Judge Photo Credit: Jeff Irizarry | The Syracuse Chiefs
32) Aaron Judge (OF)
Coming in at the number 32 prospect in all of baseball is the Yankees 6’7,” 275-pound outfielder Aaron Judge. Somewhat surpringly, but most likely due to injury, Judge fell one spot from 31 to 32. Despite that, he is much improved in 2016 at the Triple-A level compared to his incredible struggles he endured in 2015 in AAA. Judge has been sidelined since July 9 with a mild PCL sprain and bone bruise on his right knee. In 83 games prior to his injury, Judge was hitting .261/.357/.469, much improved from his abysmal .224/.308/.373 slash line in 61 games in Triple-A last year. Judge also has 16 home runs, 54 RBIs, and 16 doubles to go along with five stolen bases. He was selected to play on the Triple-A All-Star team but was sidelined due to injury. Judge is currently blocked by Carlos Belran in right field, but if Beltran is traded, Judgement Day may come soon after Judge returns from injury. If Beltran is not traded, we may be waiting until September to see the Judge.

Quote from MLB.com: “Built along the lines of Giancarlo Stanton, Judge has similar strength, leverage and raw power.”
Scouting Grades - Hit: 50 | Power: 60 | Run: 50 | Arm: 60 | Field: 50 | Overall: 55
Gary Sanchez Photo Credit: The Associated Press
39) Gary Sanchez (C)
Ranked the second best catching prospect in all of baseball, Gary Sanchez has made a big jump from his preseason rank of 59 to where he currently stands at 39. Sanchez has bounced around in MLB.com’s top 100 rankings over the past few years, but he has been a mainstay in the top 100. Sanchez has looked like a man amongst boys with his hitting ability and arm behind the plate in Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. In 68 games, he has cranked 10 home runs, driven home 48 runs, hit 21 doubles and he claims a slash line of .286/.333/.478. He’s on the cusp of becoming a mainstay in the Bronx, although he is currently blocked by Brian McCann as the team’s starting catcher.

MLB.com quote: If Sanchez stays behind the plate and realizes his power potential, he can be an All-Star.”
Scouting Grades - Hit: 45 | Power: 60 | Run: 30 | Arm: 70 | Field: 45 | Overall: 55
Blake Rutherford Photo Credit: Jarah Wright | Pulaski Yankees
64) Blake Rutherford (OF)
At 19-years-old, and just recently drafted with the 18th overall pick in the 2016 MLB draft, Yankees outfielder Blake Rutherford is already on MLB.com’s top 100 prospect list. With top five potential, Rutherford fell into the Yankees lap at 18 due to an uncertainty as to how sign-able he was. It took the Yankees a club record for a position player $3,282,000 to take him away from UCLA, but the Yankees should be happy they did not let him get away. The 6’3,” 195-pound outfielder was the “most productive hitter on the U.S. national team that won gold at the 18-and-under World Cup in Japan last semester,” and he was a potential top pick in this year’s draft before being surpassed by Mickey Moniak, who went first overall to the Phillies. Rutherford is already hitting .370/.430/.617 with two homers, nine RBIs, six doubles, and four triples in 22 minor league games. With his current production, he may be a season or two away from being not only the top prospect in the Yankees organization, but one of the top prospects in all of baseball as the team hopes he is on a fast-track to the big leagues.

MLB.com quote: “Rutherford has everything he needs to hit for significant average and power.”
Scouting Grades - Hit: 55 | Power: 55 | Arm: 50 | Field: 50 | Overall: 55

According to MLB.com’s prospect points system, which gives 100 points to the team with the number one prospect, 99 to the number two, and so on, the Yankees rank fourth in the MLB with 317 points. They are just behind the Nationals with 332, the Red Sox with 346 and the Pirates with 383. As far as representation in the top 100 goes, the Astros led all teams with seven prospects in the top 100, followed by the Pirates with six, and the Yankees were among nine clubs with five in the top 100. The Yankees farm system is certainly on the rise as they are definitely in the top half of all minor league systems in baseball. Soon, they may be a consensus top 10 farm system. Here’s the Yankees top 30 prospects in their organization.
  1. Gleyber Torres SS 
  2. Jorge Mateo SS/2B
  3. Aaron Judge OF
  4. Gary Sanchez C
  5. Blake Rutherford OF
  6. Miguel Andujar 3B
  7. Domingo Acevedo RHP 
  8. James Kaprielian RHP
  9. Wilkerman Garcia SS
  10. Dustin Fowler OF
  11. Chance Adams RHP
  12. Tyler Wade SS/2B
  13. Billy McKinney OF
  14. Vicente Campos RHP
  15. Luis Torrens C
  16. Ian Clarkin LHP
  17. Drew Finley RHP
  18. Jordan Montgomery LHP
  19. Jacob Lindgren LHP
  20. Chad Green RHP
  21. Hoy Jun Park SS/2B
  22. Mason Williams OF
  23. Ben Gamel OF
  24. Jake Cave OF
  25. Dietrich Enns LHP
  26. Kyle Holder SS/2B
  27. Donny Sands C
  28. Trey Amburgey OF
  29. Leonardo Molina OF 
  30. Freicer Perez RHP

To find MLB Pipeline's full list of the top 100 prospects in the MLB with breakdowns, click here.
To find MLB Pipeline's list of the Yankees top 30 prospects with breakdowns, click here.
To find MLB Pipeline's breakdown of their top 100 update, click here.

Article by: Chad Raines
Follow me on twitter @Chad_Rain
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