New York Yankees Should Skip Trading and Hold on To Their Young Talent
If anything can be taken from the first two days of spring training, it's this: The Yankees have a great farm system.
The Yankees are choc-full of talent ranging from starting pitchers to catchers.
At nearly every position there are legitimate prospects that should be making their ways to the Bronx over the next couple of years.
Most importantly, and immediately, is starting pitching and catching.
For starting pitching, the Yankees have Ivan Nova, Dellin Betances, Andrew Brackman, Hector Noesi and Manuel Banuelos. Nova has already shown his stuff in the big leagues and he looked good again today. Now Betances and Noesi have shown why there is a lot of hype surrounding them today agianst the Phillies.
Another abundant spot is at catcher. Jesus Montero, Austine Romine, Francisco Cervelli and Gary Sanchez are the youngsters competing for a backup spot behind Russell Martin. Cervelli has already been in the majors for a couple of years now, so we know he could do the job if he wins it. However, Montero and Romine are among the best prospects in all of baseball, and either one of them has a great shot of making the final roster.
The thing that is important is that these guys do not need to be ready on day one. The Yankees mixed and matched with players like Bartolo Colon and Freddy Garcia, threw in Sergio Mitre and Ivan Nova, and of those four candidates two starters will emerge.
Assuming Nova makes the fourth spot, Colon Mitre and Garcia wil battle for the fifth spot.
In all likliehood, Mitre will make the team as a long reliver because he has proven to be most helpful in that job for the Yankees.
That would leave Colon or Garcia as the fifth starter to start the season. Not the most ideal situation, but it is not bad either. Either of those guys can hold down the fifth spot long enough for one of the prospects to get some time in Triple-A and then be called up during the season to take over.
That would allow for more time for these young guys to develop and would also allow the Yankees more time to evaluate the situation.
Either the fifth starter will do well and stay there, or they will do poorly. Then the prospect can come up, and the pitcher (either Colon or Garcia) can be released. At the end of the day, that wouldn't be a bad situation at all, because both pitchers were low-risk.
As far as the catcher position goes, it is a very similar situation. Let Martin start off as the starting catcher starting the season but work in the backup catcher a few days a week potentially. In a week's worth of games, Martin can start four or five of the days, and a guy like Montero could start the other two or three.
This would allow for Montero to become familiar with his teammates, most importantly the pitchers he will be catching. Also, it will allow him to get big-league at-bats, which are more valuable and beneficial than facing Minor League pitchers.
Again, in this situation if Martin is doing well he will stay on as the starter and Montero would be a backup. If Martin doesn't perform, Montero can take over as starter if he has developed enough.
The Yankees can treat this situation similar to the way the San Francisco Giants treated the Molina/Buster Posey situation.
Once they feel the prospect is ready, let him take over as starter. However, the Yankees are in an even better position because Martin is younger than Molina and certainly is not done.
All the Yankees need to do is be patient. DO NOT trade away one of these blue chip prospects for a quick fix. The Yankees have four starters who can do just fine in games with the run support that the lineup can provide.
Wait it out and give these guys time to develop, and then bring them to the big leagues. A rotation of C.C. Sabathia, A.J. Burnett, Phil Hughes, Ivan Nova, and a prospect looks pretty damn good to me.
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