Yanks’ farm system ranked middle of the pack


I’ve gotten about a million emails about this (give or take a few hundred thousand), so I figured it was time to address it on the site. From Jim Callis’ chat over at ESPN last week (sub. req’d):

M Kantar (Marlborough, MA): Hi Jim, I have actually pre ordered a copy of the 2009 Prospect Handbook. I did have one question about where would the Red Sox farm system rank in MLB, about #9 overall?

SportsNation Jim Callis: The Handbook is off at the printer’s and should be back in mid-January. I won’t give away all of our farm system rankings–and we will update them again in spring training after more trades are made–but I will tell you that the Red Sox system ranked 13th.

. . .

Doug (NY): Since you can’t give away the Sox ranking without their heated rivals, yankees please. thanks!

SportsNation Jim Callis: OK, that seems fair enough. The Yankees ranked 15th.

Most of them emails asked the same thing: a) I thought the Red Sox had such a great system, and b) are the Yanks ranked too low? Let’s get the BoSox portion out of the way first.

The Sox had a great system coming into ’08, ranked #2 overall by Baseball America. During the season they graduated Clay Buchholz, Jacoby Ellsbury, Justin Masterson and Jed Lowrie to the big league club, who were ranked their #1, 2, 4 and 5 prospects, respectively. Graduating four Top 100 prospects will take the huge bite out of any system, and that’s the main reason for their drop. Ryan Kalish struggled as he returned from a wrist problem, and Nick Hagadone had Tommy John surgery after 10 innings. Craig Hansen and Brandon Moss were dealt away, also contributing to their slide. The Sox have four legit prospects at or above the Double-A level, and one of those is a fastball-only reliever who walked 3.46 batters per nine innings last year. The rest of their talent is in the lower minors, and Junichi Tazawa is just a hyped up question mark at this point. Their ranking did seem a bit low, but it’s reasonable.

As far as the Yanks go, it’s a similar situation. Right at the top, Joba and Ian Kennedy graduated to the bigs a year after being Top 100 guys. Jose Tabata, Jeff Marquez, Ross Ohlendorf and Dan McCutchen were traded away after ranking amongst the Yanks’ top 14 prospect coming into the year. Alan Horne blew out his shoulder , Frankie Cervelli had his wrist broken, and JB Cox struggled in his return from TJ. Carmen Angelini had a bad year, and Humberto Sanchez’s return from TJ wasn’t so glorious. Of the guys that did take a big step forward, two of them will start next year as 26 year olds who project as back-end starters/relievers (Phil Coke & Al Aceves). Outside of Austin Jackson, all of their high end talent is in A-ball or lower. Then, of course, you have to factor in the unsigned first and second round picks from the draft. All that adds up to a middle of pack ranking.

Ranking fifteenth overall isn’t terrible, but it’s definitely a step down from the past two or three years. The Yanks will have picks in every round but the third next year (assuming they don’t sign another Type-A free agent), so they’ll have a chance to replenish the system a bit.

Categories : Minors


  1. A.D. says:

    Exactly this isn’t some type of warning sign, its just that players graduate. Big hit was Horne and the Tabata trade, hopefully strong play by the A-ball guys this year

    • Jay CT says:

      In a way it seems a positive when a team “graduates” top guys and falls to 13 or 15. It shows that the rest of the system isn’t crap.

    • Mark says:

      The yankees will not have a 2nd round pick, as the author seems to think. they received a 3rd round pick as compensation for not signing their 2nd rounder. they will only have 1 3rd rounder since they have signed three type A free agents.

      • Mike A. says:

        The comp pick for Scott Bittle is the 76th overall pick no matter what. Once the rest of the Type-A & B’s free agents start signing, that pick will get pushed down into the back end of the second round. Right now it’s just sitting in the early third round, but that’s just temporary.

        The round number is irrelevant anyway, it’s the 76th overall pick.

    • eric says:

      Of course the red sox graduated guys who helped them make the playoffs where the Yanks graduated guys who *cost* them a shot at the playoffs. Yanks system was/is overrated. This is where they belonged a year ago and to put them here now is a reach.

      • Great comment, Eric. Compelling, and rich.

        Well, that’s gonna do it for all of us here at Channel 4 News… You stay classy, San Diego.

        • eric says:

          Sarcasm is for the lazy and people who have run out of ideas. Do you disagree with anything I said?

          • I can’t disagree with anything you said, you didn’t say anything.

          • Mike P says:

            Here’s an “idea”… take 5 seconds out of your day to stop loathing the Yankees and look up some facts.

            On what planet did Buchholtz’s 6.75 ERA and 1.76 WHIP over 76 innings help the Sox get to the playoffs? How about Jed Lowrie’s .258 BA and .339 OBP? Silly me, those must have been the exceptions. I mean, everybody knows that Ellsbury rakes so well he makes The Splinter look like a hobo… wait a second, upon further inspection… Jacoby put up a line of .280 .336 .394. Not exactly hall worthy.

            Lowrie and Ellsbury put up OPS+ of 90 and 87 (respectively). You know how many teams would make the playoffs with rosters filled with numbers like that? I’m guessing zero, though I don’t know, because I’m “lazy” (read: sarcastic).

            Yeah, Hughes and IPK didn’t help the Yanks make the playoffs. But no one on here was claiming they did. And no one had any beef with the Sox rank, nor did they rip on any of the Sox promising young talent. Furthermore , Joba ran circles around all of the Sox prospects who were “graduated” last season.

            I’m six of Red Sox fans who can’t simply have pride in their own team, and can only get off on ripping the Yankees. I live in Boston, and that seems to be the way the whole city operates. Oh well, I guess nearly nine full decades of SUCK will do that to you.

            • Doug says:

              add to that, ellsbury wasn’t even playing towards the end of the year. that’s actually how he helped the sox make the playoffs…by sitting on the bench.

            • Little Pony says:

              OK Doug,
              Here’s the thing. We don’t hate the Yankees, we hate you; that is Yankees fans. Your sense of entitlememnt is amazing. Too many options. If the yanks suck you can morph to the Mets. If the Jets suck ( which they always will) you can morph in to Giants fans, etc etc. Your list of unproven Red Sox talent was interesting; You conveniently forgot to mention mssrs Pedroia, Youklis, Papelbon, Lester and Masterson; All homegrown.
              By the way, I was dissapointed in not getting Texeira, but glad that the Yanks did. Also happy they got CC and Burnett. Let’s be honest, the rivalry is what makes it all fun. On paper no one can touch the Yanks, but luckily tha games are played on the field, not paper. It will be all the sweeter this year to see the Yanks go down in flames with this lineup. I have 1 last wish; please sign Manny! I can’t wait to see him roam the outfield and spar with drill seargent Giardi.
              Oh, by the way, stay off the Cape!
              See you at Friendly Fenway
              Little Pony

              • Mike P says:

                1) Pay closer attention… you were obviously attacking my post, and not Doug’s. Doug is probably a nice guy, don’t pick on him.

                2) Funny how you hate me/Yankee fans and not the Yankees, since over the last 5 years I’ve seen countless “Jeter sucks A-Rod” and “Yankees Suck” t-shirts, but none that stated “Mike P Sucks”. I should probably get my vision checked, huh?

                3) The fact that you suggest a Yankees fan could/would “morph” into a Mets fan, or that a Jets fan could morph into a Giants fan (or vice versa) proves beyond any reasonable doubt how little you know about that which you speak. That would be like someone who went to Boston University one day conveniently deciding that they would rather be a Boston College sports fan. DOES NOT HAPPEN!

                4) You’re right, I did fail to mention those players. Though with the exception of Masterson, it was INTENTIONAL. Did you actually read the article?? It lists 4 players which the Red Sox graduated from prospect status this past year, causing their farm ranking to drop: Clay Buchholz, Jacoby Ellsbury, Justin Masterson and Jed Lowrie. No where do they mention Pedroia, Youklis, Papelbon, or Lester. Don’t get me wrong, they are all extremely talented players, and I would be proud/thrilled to have had any of them come up through the Yankees system. But they had nothing to do with the article.

                Furthermore, I was specifically responding to Eric, who claimed that the Red Sox “graduated guys who helped them make the playoffs.” No doubt Pedroia, Youk, Papelbon and Lester got the Sox to the playoffs – probably more so than anyone else on the team. But none of them were the graduated players Eric or the article were referencing.

                I also conveniently didn’t mention guys like Jeter/Rivera/Posada/Cano, because although they are important members of our team, they didn’t come up last year.

                As for not mentioning Masterson, I simply forgot because I was so fired up by my tirade against the other 3 guys. Masterson had a downright phenomenal year – I can admit that.

                5) I was glad to see the Yanks get Tex too, at least 50% because I was scared of the Sox picking him up. Also big on CC, less so on AJ.

                I don’t think the Yanks are as impressive on paper as some fans do, but in the very least there is some new (if maybe temporary) excitement injected into the rivalry headed into next season.

                6) While I wouldn’t turn in my Yankee fan card, I would be truly disgusted if Cashman and co. ever seriously considered acquiring Ramirez. The fact that the Sox were willing to ship him out of town in the middle of a close pennant race should be more than enough evidence for any sane Yankee fan to decide against the idea.

                Lastly, I hate to break it to you, but I work on the Cape (Barnstable). So hah!

                Good luck this year – hopefully we keep it a close one to the end.

                • waswhining says:

                  Your patience in dealing with the baseball challenged is commendable. Rarely does any analysis here (I live in Boston) rise above the “Yankees Suck” or “Jeter sucks AROD” mentality. What started as a joke of some sort has become the overriding identity not only of the finger nose picking drunks who started it but their children and the neighborhood kids as well.

                  The punishment for sin, I’m reminded, is to become what the sin is. Screw around on your wife and you become an adulterer, etc. Walk/drive around with these trashy t-shirts and bumper stickers and you literally become the foul mouthed cretins of a primitive nation.

                  Thank God we’re better than all that and have the breeding and class not to feel entitled but to be thankful for who we are. God bless us one and all.

                  Oh, and Red Sox Fans suck.

              • Mike A. says:

                If the yanks suck you can morph to the Mets. If the Jets suck ( which they always will) you can morph in to Giants fans, etc etc.

                That is beyond laughable. If anything, the Red Sox are the undisputed king of bandwagon fans.

              • andrew says:

                dude fans on both sides are dicks. but look at yourself. you’re on a yankees forum, attacking us. get a life and get back to your threads……bitch.

            • eric says:

              Bucholtz didn’t help in 2008. Lowrie was an above average MLB Shortstop and an upgrade. Ells. wasn’t an all-star but played good defense and stole a ton of bases. If/when he can get his OBP up to something acceptable he’ll be Ichiro without the arm. Regardless, Ellsbury would have started more games in NY than he did in Boston (because of Crisp).

              You decided to ignore Masterson (top setup guy)

              You also ignored Hansen and Moss, who were turned in to Jason Bay (who would be the best OFer on the NYY).

              Fact is Kennedy and Hughes were overrated by the Yanks, the relied upon as keys to the 2008 rotation — with no backup plan and no talent in the minors good enough to trade and get help. They failed miserably. Now dynamic duo have zero trade value, so the Yanks were forced to abandon all their talk about developing from within and are back to spending like it’s 1986. Can Steve Kemp be far behind?

              People keep mentioning Jackson. If you don’t like Ellsbury you *really* won’t like Jackson. He doesn’t make contact. Hype, hype, hype.

            • Doug says:

              Mike, thanks for having my back but I would have responded on my own.

              And, you’re right. It’s obvious that Little Pony didn’t read anything other than your post, and decided to go on a little misguided tirade.

            • eric says:

              Another thing. Using OPS+ to quantify the value of key defensive positions is BS.

              Ellsbury had a WARP (which accounts for D) of +6.4, Lowrie was +2.5. That’s a combined +8.9 from a part-time CF/SS rookie combo.

              There were no Yankee offensive rookies who cracked 1.0. Cano (6.0) wass the only Yank under 32 who cracked 2. For positional comparison’s sake Jeter was +4.4, Melky was +1.7.

              • Doug says:

                nobody is arguing that ellsbury isn’t a good player who has a chance to be great player in time.

                my point was that he didn’t play much down the stretch and was deemed more vauable on the bench than on the field in late september and october.

                • eric says:

                  I was replying more to Mike’s comment about Lowrie and Ellsbury’s OPS+ and defending myself against charges of not having and substance to my comments.

                • Doug says:

                  good enough

                • eric says:

                  To your point about him being on the bench, the WARP stat means he contributed 6.4 wins above a “replacement player”. It would have been more if they didn’t have a decent other option in Crisp. Those wins he contributed to in June count as much as the ones the team got without him in Sept.

                  With the D factored in, Lowrie was a better player than Jeter in 2008 (when he played)

                • Doug says:

                  don’t disagree with you. ellsbury played pretty well over the 1st half of the season. always wondered why crisp replaced him in the 1st place.

                • eric says:

                  Crisp got hot about Aug 1, while Ellsubury slumped. Simple as that, I think. I believe the wrist injury Ellsbury suffered early in the season affected him quite a bit.

              • Mike P says:

                I would contest that Lowrie was an above average SS. The primary reason his call-up was regarded as a success was because he was being most proximately compared to Julio Lugo. Much in the same way that Yankees fans got excited about Brett Gardner – let’s be honest, he couldn’t hit his way out of a paper bag, even though happens to be insanely fast and can play decent defense – because he was being most closely compared to the horrendous season that Melky was having. Lowrie may very well turn into a solid major league SS, I’m not picking on the kid. All I’m saying is that he did not contribute substantially to the Sox making the playoffs this past year.

                As for Ellsbury, I think he unquestionably would have been the best CF on the Yankees last year, far and away. But again, you seem to be missing the point. Crisp is every bit as good (better by most measures) defensively as Ellsbury. And towards the latter part of the season he was unstoppable at the plate. The Sox would have survived perfectly well last season without Ellsbury patrolling CF. You claimed the 4 graduated players helped get the Sox to the playoffs. With the exception of Masterson, I don’t think they helped anymore than some available replacement.

                As for Masterson, I already apologized (read the other replies before you post) for mistakenly ignoring him. He had a great season.

                Again, you wanted to give credit to the guys the Sox “graduated” for making the playoffs. The way I see it, that group only contains Buchholtz, Ellsbury, Lowrie, and Masterson… I did not interpret your first post to be including anyone else.

                Though if you did intend to include them… to be fair, Hanson and Moss were not turned into Bay. Manny Ramirez was turned into Jason Bay. Hanson and Moss were just the tax that was necessary to compensate for another team taking on Manny’s attitude. Hanson has thus far been a bust (though I admit I liked him a ton coming out of college), and Moss probably won’t be more than a solid 4th OF.

                While OPS+ obviously doesn’t incorporate defense, it is not BS. Specifically regarding the Red Sox, Ellsbury, though strong defensively, did not represent an upgrade over Crisp last year – both are excellent CFs.

                More importantly, I don’t understand why you incessantly turn this into a Sox prospects vs. Yanks prospects argument. I didn’t make any such claim, and I don’t believe anyone else up to this point in the thread had either.

                Pay attention here, this is really important…
                You asked Tommie if he disagreed with anything you said. You basically made two claims: (1) That the Sox rookies helped them make the playoffs, and (2) That the Yanks system was overrated, and that their rookies hurt their season.
                I explicitly said that I disagreed with point (1). I also explicitly acknowledged that the Yanks rookies hurt them last year.

                Kennedy may have been overrated, I personally haven’t seen many of his games, so I won’t even defend him.

                But to say that Hughes was overrated by the Yankees is simply ignorant. He was almost universally acknowledged as the number 1 pitching prospect in all of baseball (with Homer Bailey favored by some) prior to last season, by reputable scouting authorities OUTSIDE OF THE YANKEES ORGANIZATION. Unless you also deem Buchholtz to have zero trade value (which I assume you don’t), then please don’t spout off about how Hughes has none either.

                As for abandoning their youth movement… it could be persuasively argued (I believe), that the Yankees decisions to sign elite free agents this offseason as opposed to trading away their young talent the last two years is entirely consistent with developing from within. Had the Red Sox successfully signed Teixeira, would you have said that was an abandonment of developing from within, since they have Lars Anderson waiting in the wings? Probably not.

                If I didn’t make this clear already, I do like Ellsbury. As for Jackson, I’m not on his bandwagon yet. He strikes me as more of a great athlete in general than a pure baseball player. Most guys like that don’t pan out… like you said, being a good athlete doesn’t automatically make you good at hitting a baseball.

                • eric says:

                  I didn’t say Lowrie was above average (although he was). Lugo sucked/got hurt and he was able to step in and be an improvement (0 errors at short, by the way). He also filled in for Lowell at 3b some. That’s helping.

                  Ellsbury played more corner OF than CF, so your point about Crisp is not valid. Whether you define him as the CFer or 4th OFer he was a vluable contributor and exactly what they needed in and OF with a guy who quit (Manny), a guy who got hurt a lot (Drew) and a guy who is prone to longs slumps (Crisp).

                  Neither were superstars, but both filled key roles and filled holes that could have derailed a playoff runtheir farm. In other words: they did exactly what the NYY didn’t get from their farm in 2009. That was my point.

                • Mike P says:

                  I may have overlooked Ellsbury’s value as a “4th” outfielder given the nature of the Sox other 3, but I still think they make the playoffs last year without him.

                  Anyways, at 7:10am you did in fact say: “Lowrie was an above average MLB Shortstop”

                  While the Yanks farm contributed approximately zero to the rotation or field last year (minus some spot starting by Aceves near the end of the season), there were promising contributions from the bullpen.

              • Mike P says:

                Also, genuine props on adding substance (replacement player statistics, defensive metrics) to your replies… it’s not as funny as quoting Anchor Man, but, slightly more persuasive.

  2. TheLastClown says:

    On XM Home Plate last night I heard an interview with the Reds’ #1 pick last year, Yonder Alonso. He’s supposed to be a stud, but when asked who he was impressed by in the HWL, he gave the standard: “Everyone is such amazing athletes, you know, the caliber of athlete is so good…” At which point he was cut off by the interviewer and asked, “No, I mean specific names, come on, who impressed you the most?”


    And then…


  3. Jake H says:

    If the Yanks guys hadn’t struggled I think the system would have been ranked higher. Almonte going into last season was considered a breakout canadite by BA and he had a great first half then struggled.

  4. Jamal G. says:

    I can’t wait to read the endless bitching by the SoSH community once they get a hold of this.

    So, who would you guys rank as your top-five systems? Mine – in no particular order after number one – are:

    1.Texas Rangers
    Oakland Athletics
    Atlanta Braves
    Tampa Bay Rays
    Kansas City Royals

    *San Francisco Giants

    *Sleeper: With a good year from Tim Alderson and Angel Villalona, they could have four guys – including Madison Bumgarner and Buster Posey – in the top 35.

  5. Mike, you agree with those ballpark figures of 13 for the Sox and 15 for us?

    What players are in their system that would put them in front of us, in your opinion?

  6. Brooklyn Ed says:

    the Yanks are ready to unveil Teixeria.

    The Yankees are making plans for a press conference to fete new first baseman Mark Teixeira, perhaps as early as Tuesday, according to baseball sources.


  7. Joey H says:

    Outstanding post Mike. I just wish we can produce more position players. Seems like our system has been drained since we graduated Jeter, Posada Bernie, Soriano(even though he is from Japan he was our product first)

  8. 27 this year says:

    Interesting tidbit,

    Steve Adams on mlbtr speculated that we might match up with the Nats to get Milledge who could be traded. He can play a good CF and has offensive ability. Beyond that, I don’t know much about him. Anyone know a decent trade proposal outside of IPK/Melky?

  9. Jamal G. says:

    What would you guys be comfortable giving up in a package for Lastings Milledge? Off the top of my head, I was thinking Ian Kennedy, Mark Melancon and Zach McAllister might be a reasonable offer, no?

    • Mike A. says:

      I’m pretty sure Brett Gardner could manage a .330 OBP. Milledge isn’t worth the headache, just like Manny. Especially since you have to give up talent to get him, not just money.

    • Melancon, no.

      While I agree that closers aren’t as important as they’re made out to be and that reliever prospects are usually not untouchables, I’m not giving up a groomed closer of the future while our closer of the present is two years away from retirement.

      Melancon in the system prevents us from having to do something stupid like paying Fransisco Rodriguez 37M over 3 years. It’s like anti-dumb-move insurance.

      Despite our need at CF, Melancon is more necessary for our future than Milledge is, IMO.

      • dan says:

        “anti-dumb-move insurance”

        I’m sure Giants fans wished Sabean had that.

        And regarding Milledge–Bowden always asks the world for everybody. Whatever it would take to get Milledge wouldn’t be worth the return.

      • Jamal G. says:

        I agree, the greatest value of having a cost-controlled, potential closer is that you don’t have to take any uber-risks in signing free-agent relievers to multi-year contracts.

        However, the strength of this system is it’s right-handed power arms, whether that be in the rotation or the bullpen. Granted, Mark Melancon is the cream of the crop, but isn’t it always wise to deal from a position of strength to supplement a position of weakness (i.e.: young, cost-controlled, right-handed relief for young, cost-controlled outfielders)?

        • However, the strength of this system is it’s right-handed power arms, whether that be in the rotation or the bullpen. Granted, Mark Melancon is the cream of the crop, but isn’t it always wise to deal from a position of strength to supplement a position of weakness?

          Which is why I’m willing to deal IPK, McAllister, Garcia, Grienke, Bruney, Edwar, Veras, Robertson, Albaladejo, Cox, Claggett, Whelan, and Hungry Hungry Humberto in the right deal…

          … but not Melancon. Because he’s the cream of the crop, as we agree.

        • A.D. says:

          Milledge is a pretty bad CF, -10 UZR/150 last year

    • A.D. says:

      Nothing, I don’t want Lastings Milledge

  10. Jamal G. says:

    “24″ premiers next Sunday night?!??!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!? Fuck yes!!!!!!

  11. Ivan says:

    Shhhhh….my Eagles are about to play right now.

    • Hey, good luck to Donovan McNabb, he deserves some success for all the shit he gets from that town.

      In a totally related story, did you know that Donovan McNabb was the starting QB for me on my Championship winning RAB Fantasy Football League team, Tommie’s TItans? It’s true… We destroyed many a board regular. There was blood everywhere. I am awesome, and Mike, Joe, Rafi, JSB, Manimal, Pat, and countless others knelt humbly at the feet of my prowess season long.

      [ Fantasy Football Championship Bragging Rights Name Drop #2 of 1000 ]

  12. A.D. says:

    Say no to Milledge, he’s a pretty bad CF, and he hasn’t really shown that he’s going to hit, so why would we want to give up talent for him

  13. Ivan says:

    Key is for the Eagles, is on defense is to try slow down AP, undress Tavaris Jackson like a smutty ho, and offense get westbrook involve running the ball and have a balance attack and hopefully Andy Ried doesn’t play this game on offense like it’s Arena Football.

  14. Jamal G. says:

    Nice job, FOX, showing me Chester Taylor walk off the field when they are measuring the first down.

  15. Ivan says:

    Lets Go DeSean Jackson.

  16. Ivan says:

    I think Mike and Tommie were talking about it,

    It just come to show ya how important it is to build a football team from the lines.

    In that 06 Draft, people killed the Texans for taking Mario Williams over the fancy RB and QB’s, and he might end up the best player of that group. Same with Jets drafting D’Brickashaw Ferguson. Isn’t he more valuable than Bush and Young.

    • Much. That was my main beef with Parcells as coach/GM/grand-poobah of the Jets, we wasted high draft picks on longshot WR’s and DB’s and ignored the lines. If you look at the teams that win consistently, they tend to use more day one picks on offensive and defensive linemen.

      Everything starts up front.

    • Matt says:

      I’m still pissed that Young won ROTY over Colston (my one remaining bit of Hofstra pride after going there for one year).

      • GG says:

        was checking out your blog post on the bench, i was sorta under the impression that cody ransom could come back? not that i had given much thought

  17. Ivan says:

    So far the eagles are slowing down AP but not Taylor………great.

  18. Doug says:

    As the “Doug” from the Callis chat, figured I should chime in here. I agree with Mike. We dropped from 5 to 15 in the rankings due mainly to a couple of things: trades and graduation.

    Here’s our top 10 last year:
    1. Joba Chamberlain, rhp
    2. Austin Jackson, of
    3. Jose Tabata, of
    4. Ian Kennedy, rhp
    5. Alan Horne, rhp
    6. Jesus Montero, c
    7. Jeff Marquez, rhp
    8. Brett Gardner, of
    9. Ross Ohlendorf, rhp
    10. Andrew Brackman, rhp

    Tabata, Marquez, and Ohlendorf are not in the organization because they were dealt, while Joba and Kennedy are not “prospect” eligible anymore due to playing time with the big club. So, half of our top 10 are no longer around.

    As for the remaining 5 guys, Jackson is now our #1 prospect, while Montero is #2, and Brackman is #3. Horne has had injury problems and isn’t even on our 40-man roster anymore. And while Gardner may be our starting CF this year, he really isn’t a great prospect.

    Now, here’s our current top 10:
    1. Austin Jackson, of
    2. Jesus Montero, c
    3. Andrew Brackman, rhp
    4. Austin Romine, c
    5. Dellin Betances, rhp
    6. Zach McAllister, rhp
    7. Alfredo Aceves, rhp
    8. Phil Coke, lhp
    9. Mark Melancon, rhp
    10. Bradley Suttle, 3b

    Of the above, the only one who may graduate to the majors is Coke. So barring trades (and injury of course), the other 9 guys should be on this list next year as well.

    And that brings us to another reason we dropped 10 slots. When BA does their system rankings, they give greater weight to guys closer to the majors (and rightfully so as they have a better chance of having any impact at all at the major league level). Now, looking at our top 10 again, only 3 guys will begin the year at AAA Scranton (Jackson, Aceves, and Melancon), and probably only 1 at AA Trenton (McAllister). That leaves 5 guys at HiA and lower (actually, there’ll all be at HiA Tampa). So, since we have a “young” top 10 experience-wise, we rank out a little lower than organizations who have more upper level prospects. As these guys gain another year of experience and move closer to the majors, we should automatically move back into the BA top 10 next year.

    And looking beyond next year, Yankee fans can anticipate the team to be very highly ranked for years to come. The lower levels of our minor league system are full of “toolsy” guys who, with a little experience (and good health), should develop into top-notch prospects over the next few years. For those interested, among the names to keep an eye on are Christian Garcia, Wilkins de la Rosa, Arodys Vizcaino, Jeremy Bleich, Garrison Lassiter, Kelvin De Leon, Jairo Heredia, Ryan Zink, Carmen Angelini, Brandon Laird, and Eduardo Sosa.

    • Jake K. says:

      I hate to say it, but I would bet my house against Chris Garcia ever throwing a pitch in the major leagues.

    • Andy In Sunny Daytona says:

      You forgot Melvin Croussett.

    • 'The' Steve says:

      “Of the above, the only one who may graduate to the majors is Coke. So barring trades (and injury of course), the other 9 guys should be on this list next year as well.”

      I don’t think that’s the case. Aceves should head north with the team as the long man (if not the 5th starter) Melancon could break camp with the team, but will more likely be sent to AAA and take over for whoever stumbles in the bullpen around June. McAllister and A-Jax have an outside shot at spending some time on the 25 man later this season, and should certainly be September call ups if they have good seasons this year.

      So I think Aceves, Coke and Melancon are pretty safe bets to lose their status.

      • Doug says:

        I’ll give you Aceves if Hughes breaks camp with the team as the #5 starter. If he does, then Aceves is the 1st guy called up to fill in. But if Hughes starts in SWB, then I think he’s the 1st guy, and Aceves may not accumulate the required innings.

        And Melancon’s got an outside shot, but it would require a pen guy to go down with an injury or really falter early for him to get enough innings with the big club.

  19. eric says:

    There is no comparison between the Yanks farm systm and the Sox farm systm in recent years. Yanks should be happy to be listed within shouting distance of the sox by any ranking.

    • I wonder how long you’ll continue dropping in your fairly worthless opinions without adding in any actual thoughtful analysis or backing up any of your silly statements.

      My guess is three weeks, at which point you’ll either be blasted enough that you’ll give up or you’ll be utterly ignored as a troll.


    • Mike P says:

      Hm… my understanding of the rankings was that they reflected the strengths of the systems as presently constituted, rather than grading the strength of the systems over “recent years”.

      Whoops, there I go being LAZY again.

  20. eric says:

    I’m a troll?

  21. [...] day? Ewww. This little nugget of news is post worthy however, and comes from Anthony McCarron (h/t Brooklyn Ed): The Yankees are making plans for a press conference to fete new first baseman Mark Teixeira, [...]

  22. Lanny says:

    The Yankees ranking at 15 is a gift. Rankings mean nothing but there is almost no talent at the high levels of the Yankees system in terms of position players.

  23. Adrian-Retire21 says:

    The Yankees biggest problem in the farm is most of the players are high risk high reward players(i.e Dellin,Brackman,Garcia,Melchon,Sanchez)

    Hopefully Cashman can get some international talent.

  24. [...] to the folks at River Ave. Blues, the addition of Ian Patrick Kennedy and Joba Chamberlain to the main roster and the loss of Jose [...]

  25. ryan says:

    Yanks Farm is a couple yrs behind that’s all. Makes sense considering the Yanks only started getting serious in recent yrs about their farm.

    • eric says:

      I think this is Year 5 of hearing this line about how the Yanks system is a few years behind . If the Sox have taken a step backwards due to so many former top prospects now being in MLB (and they have), shouldn’t the Yanks be ahead of the Sox now?

  26. LUVDAPADS says:

    What i find hillarious are the Yankee fans that think they are so classy. As many dirt bags there may be at Fenway, there are just as many – if not more (obvsiouly, it is a bigger stadium) at Yankee stadium.

    For instance, i know 4 girls who went there (Yankee Stadium) to see the Sox play. They had seat on 3B – not the bleachers. They are girls, they were minding their business – hell 2 dont even drink – and they had to go home early b/c some dirt bag Yankees fans were throwing beer on them b/c they were wearing Red Sox shirts

    yeah, you guys are SOOO much more classy than Boston.

    bunch of jokes is what you guys are

  27. JOBA says:

    wow, i love how this is basically a bunch of red sox fans and yankees fans arguing. i am a yankees fan, and to all those Redsox fans were “so happy the yanks got tex, and cc” must have damaged their head. It just shows how jealous red sox fans are that we got both FREE AGENT WORKHORSES.

    if the redsox’s had signed either of these guys,they probably would be throwing a parade in Boston for them; however, the didnt: they signed neither.

    And now look at the problems they have: still no catcher, an unhealthy Big Papi, and a young rotation. Seems to me like that is a big risk team.

    To all those redsox fans who want cashman to get Manny, it probably wont happen. BUT even if we do sign manny the yanks would still under their 2008 salary cap so i wouldnt be completely appalled by the fact that we signed the four biggest free agents. Even though i think manny is a great ballplayer, it is necessary to control his ego. The whole “manny being manny” thing that he has going for himself would have to stop if he were a yankee. Furthermore, he would have to cut his dreads.

    As for the fact of Classiness in ballparks, i highly doubt that any fan in general would ever have the disrespect to pour beer on a rival fan. however if this is true i would like to apologize on behalf of those animals if this actually happened. I think that to be a good baseball fan you need to respect all teams, even your rivals.

    To address the fact of “loyal fans,” if you compare the amount of Redsox fans to yankees fans, there are tons for sox fans. However how many of them are not loyal fans. people who dont like any baseball team just decide to like the redsox because they have won the most WS in the last 5 years. these fans we like to call BANDWAGONERS. these arent true fans, these are people who like the redsox just so they can say they like a team. Over the 8 years in which the yankees havent won a WS, no fans have jumped off the bandwagon.

    SO, to all those sox fans out there, dont be jealous, we all know you want to have the free agents that the yankees signed.

    PS have fun playing golf in october.

    • Little Pony says:

      OK, where do I start. Like I said in an earlier post, Of course I would like to have Tex and CC on the Sox. Jealous? emphatically NO! While the Yanks can outspend the Sox, The Sox can outspend most other teams so no whining here. I do like the efforts the Sox are making at building as much as they can through the draft and supplementing with free agents. We’ll see how it all unfolds on the field, right now it’s all on paper. Remember the Yanks didnt make the playoffs last year and the Rays kicked both the Yanks and the Sox asses. So, we’ll see, it sure ratchets up the rivalry and that’s a good thing.

      While your right that there are questions on the SoxI don’t agree with you that the pitching is questionable; I think the starters and bullpen are pretty solid. The top 3 starters are very solid and 4/5 will be ok. If Penney is healthy again they could have as good a staff as anyone in baseball. Yes there are questions about Papis health and whats happening at catcher but what team doesnt have questions; including the Yanks; outfield?
      Manny? well he is a crapshoot. he could be the guy who raked for the Dodgers or the POS dog that we saw before the trading deadline and from time to time during his Boston career. I would be happy to see the Yanks sign him and sit back and watch he and Giardi battle.
      As far as fans go, theres plenty of morons to go around both at Fenway and the Bronx; Neither is defensible. It’s hard to bring your kids to games in either place. The northeast seems to breed thes idiots and maybe the worst of the bunch are from Philly; I’ve never seen worse than I saw when the Pats played the Eagles in the Superbowl. These guys made the Sox/Yankee idiots look like solid citizens.
      As far as loyalty, Yes, red Sox nation has engorged over the last few years in what we like to call Pink Hats, but you should know that both these teams have a very large loyal fan basethat goes back decades.
      So, while the Yanks have really upgraded, I would be careful about commenting about playing golf in October. The AL East hase 4 very serious and talented teams. Playing 19 games against each of thes teams will be very difficult. As much as I like Tex and CC, CC is north of 300 lbs and Burnett is a dog. So, we’ll see.
      Looking forward to the first time that Joba puts a high hard one in Youkis ear; game on!
      Little Pony

  28. Gurris says:

    “As for the fact of Classiness in ballparks, i highly doubt that any fan in general would ever have the disrespect to pour beer on a rival fan. ”

    Actually, as a Yankees fan in Fenway Park, this actually happened to me. However, in defense of the Fenway fans, they were actually trying to pour the beer on each other, and I was just collateral damage. The lesson for me was that, in Boston, one should never confuse stupidity for actual rudeness.

  29. [...] (health) and Dellin Betances (command, mechanics). As you probably remember, Baseball America also rated the Yanks system 15th overall, so we have some consensus here. The system is definitely down from the past few years, but [...]

  30. [...] The $97.8M figure places them fourth in the division, ahead of only the Blue Jays at $94.1M. Baseball America and Keith Law both rated the Yanks’ system fourth in the division as well, so it’s nice [...]

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