Jackson ranked 2nd best outfield prospect in the IL

Umps and Angels pitchers announced for ALCS
Yanks on Kikuchi's U.S. itinerary

Baseball America finished their league top 20 series today, wrapping up with the Triple-A International League. Austin Jackson was the only Yankee prospect to make the list, ranking 7th overall. Only Andrew McCutchen of the Pirates placed higher among outfielders. The subscriber only scouting report called Jackson “most exciting player to spend the full season in the IL,” noting that he drew comparisons to Torii Hunter, albeit with less power. I’d take that in a heartbeat.

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Umps and Angels pitchers announced for ALCS
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  • Tom Zig

    twice on sundays!

  • SamVa

    “noting that he drew comparisons to Torii Hunter, albeit with less power. I’d take that in a heartbeat.”

    As would I as long as the comparison isn’t “Torii and Austin look alike” or “they both play baseball.”

    • Accent Shallow

      Well, they’re both black centerfielders.

      If Jackson could even come close to approximating Hunter’s career, that’d be tremendous.

  • JSquared

    A-JAX!!

  • Mike HC

    Other than Hunter’s defense, all of Hunter’s offensive value lies with his power. So Torii Hunter without power is um, Melky Cabrera?

    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      They didn’t say he’s Hunter with NO power, they said he’s Hunter with LESS power. Presumably, Hunter with less power is still more power than Melky Cabrera.

      • Mike HC

        Cabrera had 13 homers and 28 doubles. I didn’t mean to say “no” power. But Hunter with “less” power, is still just about Melky.

        • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

          Torii Hunter, career SLG and IsoP – .472, .197
          Melky Cabrera, career SLG and IsoP – .385, .115

          There’s a WIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIDE gap in power potential and results between Melky Cabrera and Torii Hunter. AJax can be Torii with less power and still be a much, much, much better hitter than Leche.

    • The Ghost of Scott Brosius

      His defense is significantly better than melky though. and his base-stealing ability in his younger years.

      • Mike HC

        Right. I just meant offensively. But you are right. I think Jackson is projected to be a better defender and base runner than Melky. I’m not so sure what the difference will be offensively though. Melky is also still improving.

      • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        Agreed.

        Torii Hunter with less power is only one of the many advantage AJax has over Melky.

        • Joseph M

          You can’t be serious. At this stage of his career Austin Jackson can’t tie Melky’s spikes. Melky at 22 (same age as Austin is now) hit 8 homers drove in 73 runs and hit .273 in the major leagues! Austin did more or less the same thing in AAA ball. Big difference.

          • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

            Jake already rebutted your argument below, so I’ll direct you to him:

            http://riveraveblues.com/2009/.....ent-626259

            • Joseph M

              Jack rebutted nothing. Jack is engaging in speculation, I could speculate just as easily that Austin is on a similar track to a Yankee farm hand in the 70’s named Terry Whitfield. Whitfield made it to the majors saw some at bats but he was a journeyman outfielder. What I stated was fact. Right now Austin has done nothing in the majors and he will turn 23 before spring training. Just because Hunter developed slowly doesn’t mean Austin will be another Hunter. When he gets to the majors and he accomplishes something then we can have this debate until then it’s wishin and hopin on your part.

  • Twist

    Brett Gardner (2008) AAA: .296/.414/.422
    Austin Jackson (2009) AAA: .300/.354/.405

    Why would Jackson be any better than Gardner at the major league level?

    • Joe

      I’m pretty sure he’s a couple years younger the Gardener, and he didn’t go to college, so he’s got a little less experience with better competition

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

      Um, Gardner was three and a half years older than Jackson when he was in Triple-A.

    • larryf

      don’t think he would be. Love to see those two in a footrace. I saw AJ in 2 minor league games this year. He is not very big-although bigger than Garner but who isn’t???

    • pat

      Because the year you listed Gardner was 24/25. Austin Jackson was 22. There is a difference.

    • Accent Shallow

      Woof.

      • Lanny

        There are much better ways to defend Gardner than try to take shots at someone like Jackson who is younger and more talented.

        • a realist

          yeah. just take more shots at melky.

  • pat

    Hey Mike, Desmond Jennings or Ajax?. I’d go with Jennings. I hate the Rays.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

      Jennings, easy. He’s a monster.

      • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        Agreed. Loves me some Desmond Jennings. There’s a reason Crawford and Upton are on the block (aside from money, of course.)

        • Reggie C.

          Is Jennings’s talent on that level though?

          The Rays can’t be so friggin lucky that they can replace one uber-talent with another uber-talent.

          If Crawford gets traded , is it fair to simply hand Jennings the starting position?

          • pat

            They could put Zobrist in LF until Jennings is ready, which probably won’t take more than a half season or so.

          • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

            It’s not about Jennings replicating exactly what CC or Upton do. It’s about him not being a massive dropoff initially so that they can afford to hand him the starting spot now and keep the cost savings in their pocket (or reinvest it elsewhere).

            But yeah, he has enough talent to possibly equal them eventually.

  • http://dinosaursneverexisted.files.wordpress.com/2009/04/melky.jpg Drew

    Not only does he draw comparisons to Hunter, he may be John Mayberry Sr.

    /FOX’d

    • pat

      He’s black, he plays the outfield, he’s in Yankees gear.. might be REGGIE Jackson!

  • Charlie

    i love ajax. everyone seemed kinda down on him this year, but i think (and hope) he’ll be in the bigs early next year

    • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bm61weFrK4c JobaWockeeZ

      Extremely doubt it. And if he was a million people will call him a bust so it’s best he gets another season at AAA.

  • Andy in Sunny Daytona

    Just think, AJax had never even seen a baseball before the Yankees drafted him. He played nothing but basketball his entire life until the Yankees came along and picked him.

    /incorrectedness’d

    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      He’s a natural athlete. He can play anything, except for quarterback, just by picking up a bat or a ball.

      /RushLimbaugh’d

      • Ferb

        Yeah, Rush not being allowed to be a partial owner in a football team due to some controversial things he said is- of course- a valid reason to deny him.

        I am still waiting tsjc for you to make some witty humor against some liberal figures. Although, that would take real comedic talent unlike hurling shots at conservatives- which any idiot, like yourself, can do.

  • Alan

    Man, the Rays are going to be scary good for a long time. They’ve got a ton of high quality talent ready to break into the team. If only they had some money to bankroll the team, watch out.

    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      Yup. They’re going to win the 2009 AL East easy. The Yankees are prime candidates to miss the playoffs all together.

      /March’d

    • ROBTEN

      Wild Thought: Why can the Rays compete in the AL East with their limited payroll, but Cashman has to spend $200 million dollars just to beat the Minnesota Twins?

      /Lombardi’d

    • http://dinosaursneverexisted.files.wordpress.com/2009/04/melky.jpg Drew

      They really aren’t though.

    • Lanny

      A lot of teams have nice talent on the farm. As you saw this yr its much harder being consistent.

      im sure the rays gm will continue to make smart moves like trading two pitchers like jackson and hammel.

      keep that up and they’ll never contend again

      • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        A lot of teams have nice talent on the farm. As you saw this yr its much harder being consistent.

        Agreed. That’s a well reasoned statement that shows perspective and refrains from hyperbole.

        im sure the rays gm will continue to make smart moves like trading two pitchers like jackson and hammel.

        Hmmm… you’re correct, but that’s a little less reasonable and shows less perspective, but on the whole, you’re still good money.

        keep that up and they’ll never contend again

        OH SHIT YOU SCREWED IT ALL UP

        • Salty Buggah

          No no tsjc, you’re missing the main point. Lanny actually correctly replied to a comment!!!!

          • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

            You’re correct on that point. It is quite shocking.

            I guess Lanny’s broken clock is right once a day.

  • Reggie C.

    I’m rooting for Austin Jackson to make a leap in his offensive game and displace Gardbrera sometime in 2010. This team can use another brotha who’s not a pinch runner.

    • JMK aka The Overshare

      Your rhymes are ill, kid.

  • kevin

    would you guys trade jackson in a package for upton? Would the Rays even take it? Who else do you think would be involved?

    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      No. We shouldn’t be trading intradivision, we’re not the Mets, Jays, Padres or the like.

    • Doug

      you betcha

  • http://twitter.com/hopjake Jake H

    Hunters power developed late. At age 22 same age as Jackson, Hunter’s triple slash line from AA and AA

    .295/.333/.463. 20 walks 77 k’s in 435 at bats. 1 k for every 5.649 at bats. 31 doubles, 3 triples, 10 hrs

    Jackson

    .300/.354/.405 40 walks 123 k’s 1 k for every 4.52 at bay.
    23 doubles, 9 triples, 4 hr.

    Now some of Hunter’s #’s were at a lower level then Jackson but those are their seasons at 22.

    Hunter didn’t hit 20 hrs until he was 26.

    • Doug

      with only 504 ABs, it’s 1 K for every 4.10 ABs. big difference

  • Larryf

    I think AJ over a full season will make us forget about Leche. Huge upside and would not trade him until we see him for a full year in the bigs. Biggest reason to keep melky is he is Cano’s buddy but Robbie will get over it.

    • http://dinosaursneverexisted.files.wordpress.com/2009/04/melky.jpg Drew

      I really hope Ajax doesn’t have to deal with all the shit Melky does. Chances are, he’s going to be an okay player. Unfortunately, with the NY fanbase, it’s star or bust.

      • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        (wipes down microwave; unwraps burrito)

        • 27 this year

          FINALLY!!!!

      • Lanny

        The biggest reason to keep Melky isnt that hes Canos buddy. Its because hes a solid player who makes no money.

        No team will take a crap player because a star player is friends with him

        • Larryf

          Joking about Cano. I just prefer AJ/Gardner combo to melky for next year…

          • All praise be to Mo

            Yea, but with upcoming arbitration raises, Melky might get a little expensive for his skill set.

      • ROBTEN

        It’s lucky, then, that the fanbase doesn’t run the team.

        If it were up to the “fanbase”:

        Joba… no Hughes… no Joba… would be in the bullpen forever and the other would be on the Twins.

        Cano would have been waived.

        AJAX would have been traded for Paul Byrd.

        Montero would have been traded for Bronson Arroyo.

        and A-Rod would have been buried under the new stadium.

  • Joseph M

    The good news, Jackson is still 22 years old and still developing. The bad news, Jackson strikes out way too much and based on his power numbers that’s something we can’t justify. He’s not ready for the majors (that’s for sure), we’ll see how it goes in 2010. If someone offers something that we need and are willing to take Jackson I say do it.

    • Doug

      i agree. package him with kennedy for upton, who’s on the outs with the rays

      • All praise be to Mo

        Nowhere near enough for Upton imo

        • Doug

          going into this past season, i’d 100% agree with you, and while you still might be right, his value couldn’t be lower than it is right now. so, i’d give it a shot.

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