It was a great year to be a hitter in the New York Yankees’ system. However, the same can’t be said regarding the organization’s pitching prospects.
Expected to contribute in the major leagues this past season, top pitching prospects LHP Manny Banuelos (Tommy John surgery) and RHP Dellin Betances (demoted from Triple to Double-A) took step in the wrong direction, while RHP Jose Campos, a potential steal acquired in the Michael Pineda-Jesus Montero swap, missed nearly all of 2012 with an elbow injury.
They weren't the only players hampered by injuries, as both OF Mason Williams (shoulder) and 2B Angelo Gumbs (elbow) were forced to miss the final months of the minor league regular season.
The good news is that the organization has a slew of high-upside position players steadily working their way up the minor league ladder. If all goes as hoped, the Yankees could feature one of the better homegrown teams in recent memory; C Gary Sanchez, Gumbs, 3B Dante Bichette, Jr., OFs Williams, Tyler Austin, Slade Heathcott and Ramon Flores are all expected to arrive in the major leagues between the 2014-2016 seasons.
Although the Yankees will likely continue to rely on free agency and acquisitions via trade for at least two more seasons, there is an end in sight for their prospect dry-spell. At the same time, it wouldn’t surprise me if Williams, Austin or Heathcott was traded within the next two years.