John Sickels has published his “New York Yankees Top 20 Prospects for 2009” list. Here’s his “top ten” for the Yanks:
1] Jesus Montero, C
2] Austin Jackson, OF
3] Dellin Betances, RHP
4] Austin Romine, C
5] Zach McAllister, RHP
6] Mark Melancon, RHP
7] Jairo Heredia
8] Andrew Brackman
9] Phil Coke, LHP
10] Alfredo Aceves, RHP
Further, here’s what he has to say about the Yankees system, in general:
The Yankees don’t have anyone in the system that is a sure-fire superstar right now, but there is a lot of material to work with here on the pitching side. I love Montero’s bat, but defensive questions prevent a higher grade at this time. He has star offensive potential, but where does he play? Jackson looks more like a solid player than a star. Both Romine and Suttle have major league potential but some questions they need to answer at this point. Young tools guys like Sosa and De Leon look promising but are so far away that they are hard to rank at this point.
Things look much better on the pitching side. Brackman has a high ceiling obviously, but I find the New York hype about him highly annoying and, more importantly, very misleading. He is extremely raw for a college pitcher and until he actually takes the field in full-season ball and throws some strikes, I am keeping expectations in check. I like the guys ahead of him better at this point, particularly McAllister and Heredia. Coke and Aceves don’t have huge ceilings, but both look like useful major league pitchers. There are a LOT of power bullpen arms available.
Overall, this system needs hitters but has considerable depth in pitching, giving them a lot to work with on the trade market. They are putting more and more money into Latin America, and a less conservative approach in the draft should pay dividends.
…Brackman has a high ceiling obviously, but I find the New York hype about him highly annoying and, more importantly, very misleading…
A Yankee pitching prospect hyped to the point where we are misled about their true potential? Wow. That could never happen, could it?