Five Reasons Why Mason Williams Might Be the Best Outfielder in the Yankee Farm System

The Yankees have a lot of outfielders in the high minors who will probably have some kind of MLB career. In book, that list includes, in no particular order: Tyler Austin, Aaron Judge, Slade Heathcott, Ramon Flores, Jake Cave, and Mason Williams. Aaron Judge is still the best prospect of the group. But I think there is a decent chance that Mason Williams is the best player of the group. Here’s why:

He’s got a pedigree

It wasn’t that long ago that Mason Williams was considered a top-top prospect. In 2013, Baseball America ranked him #1 in the Yankee system and #32 in all of baseball. He was coming off an injury-shortened season where he hit .298/.346/.474 between Low-A and High-A as a 20 year-old, showing off a kick-ass 13% strikeout rate and just a .319 BABIP. He was a dynamo on the bases and in the field, and looked like a star.

Of course, Williams has played two full seasons since then, and the results have been horrible.…

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How Soon Should We Expect Luis Severino?

I’m not a big minor league guy, so I’m not here to tell you whether or not Luis Severino will be the next Pedro Martinez or another busted prospect. However, the way the Yankees have handled Severino has certainly peaked my interest.

Severino was promoted to Triple-A Scranton-Wilkes Barre a little faster than expected. He only pitched 67.2 innings at Single-A Charleston before getting promoted, 20.2 innings at Single-A + Tampa and 63 innings at Double-A Trenton before this promotion.

Severino is only 21 years old and moving through the system at a very rapid pace. Meanwhile, another top prospect Aaron Judge has almost 200 very productive at-bats at Trenton and is already 23, but has not been promoted yet. Is it because the Yankees have a logjam in the outfield and see no way Judge makes MLB this season? On the other side of the coin, the Yankees have very little pitching depth and maybe they see Severino making a contribution in the Bronx this season?…

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Slade Heathcott’s Long and Winding Road to the Majors

sladeAs you likely know by now, Slade Heathcott made his major league debut Wednesday night when he pinch ran for Mark Teixeira in the eighth and then played center. This is not just notable because arguably the Yankees’ most important offensive piece, Jacoby Ellsbury, hit the DL, causing the Yankees to call up their first round pick from the 2009 Draft. Hopefully, Heathcott gets an opportunity to pick up his first hit sometime soon, but as we wait for that I thought I’d look back on Heathcott’s long road to the Bronx.

If you have followed the Yankees’ farm system at all the last five or six years, you know the name Slade Heathcott and why I am so excited to see him finally break into the majors. Granted, his stay may be a short one for any number of reasons, but considering how miniscule the percentage of minor league players to ever make an appearance in the majors is, this is no small feat.…

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Checking in with Rob Refsnyder, IL Batter of the Week

refsnyderRob Refsnyder had made a name for himself well before the Yankees took him in the fifth round of the 2012 Draft. After being drafted, Refsnyder went on to win Most Outstanding Player honors with Arizona at the College World Series. Having capped off his collegiate career on top, Refsnyder signed with the Yankees and quickly began his professional pursuit. The young second baseman hasn’t stopped picking up some hardware as he journeys towards the Bronx, with his most recent honors coming on Monday, when he was named the IL Batter of the Week.

In truth, Refsnyder’s recognition for last week was well-deserved, but doesn’t come close to telling the full story. Between May 11 and May 17, Refsnyder hit .400, with six extra-base hits (two homers and four doubles) and six RBIs. After Tuesday’s game against Charlotte, however, Refsnyder is riding a ten-game hit streak and has made it on base in every game since the second game of a doubleheader against Pawtucket on April 25 (21 games).…

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Prospect Profile: Jacob Lindgren

jlindgrenJacob Stephen Lindgren
Born: March 12, 1993, Biloxi, Mississippi
Height: 5’11
Weight: 205
Bats: Left
Throws: Left
Position: Relief Pitcher

Even though it has been a couple years since I consistently wrote prospect profiles, by and large the players on the upper level rosters are very familiar to me. Jacob Lindgren, a relief pitcher with the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders, would be one of the exceptions. Having been drafted out of Mississippi State by the Yankees in 2014, Lindgren has shot through the Yankees’ farm system and appears to be on the cusp of making his major league debut.

Lindgren was taken by the Yankees with their first pick of the 2014 draft, however, he was taken in the second round – the 55th overall pick. The southpaw began as a starter in college, taking Mississippi State to the College World Series, but in 2014 he started coming out of the bullpen. Quickly becoming one of the most dominant relievers in college baseball, Lindgren didn’t slow down after signing with the Yankees, making appearances with four Yankees minor league affiliates last year.…

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Prospect Who’s Hot: April


I see ya there, Ramon! Courtesy of

After a brutally cold winter this year, it appears as though spring has finally made its way to the northeast, which must mean we have made it through the first month of baseball! I think many of us entered this season wondering what kind of year it would be for the Yankees and their affiliates, but so far 2015 seems to be off to a good start. This seemed like a good chance to look back on April and see which prospects are starting hot!

Chase Whitley (Scranton): Whitley started the season in Scranton and put up some strong performances. Now, he is holding his own in the Bronx with two strong showings under his belt during the absence of Tanaka. Before his call up, Whitley was 2-0 in three starts with a 2.12 ERA, thirteen strikeouts and only six walks.

Slade Heathcott (Scranton): After being sidelined by injuries quite a bit during his professional career, Heathcott made quite the impression during Spring Training and he hasn’t let up any.…

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The Farm Report: May 4

Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders:
The RailRiders had a tougher week this past week, going 3-4. They avoided the three-game sweep by Gwinett, before splitting a four game series with Charlotte. They now own a 12-13 record and remain 3.5 games behind Buffalo.

The big news out of Scranton has been Jose Pirela, who continues to rehab in Scranton. In his four games with the RailRiders this week, Pirela went 11-19 (.579) with four doubles, a homer, four RBIs and a walk. He is hitting .364/.400/.606 over eight minor league starts spread between Tampa, Trenton and Scranton. Ben Gamel continues to swing a hot bat (.368/.427/.574), but Slade Heathcott had a slow week hitting just .250.

Rob Refsnyder is riding an eight game hit streak, going 32-79 (.405) with seven RBIs and a stolen base. He even stole a hit from Eury Perez, which you can watch here. Jose Ramirez picked up his last two save opportunities this week, throwing three hitless innings, walking one and striking out one.…

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The Farm Report: April 27

Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders:
The RailRiders went 4-3 this week, putting them at 9-9 over all, and 3.5 games behind Buffalo in the IL North Division. They took two out of three from Lehigh Valley before splitting a four game set against Pawtucket. The RailRiders currently lead the IL in triples with seven.

Chase Whitley continues to impress, throwing six innings against Lehigh Valley on Wednesday, giving up one run on six hits, no walks and two Ks. He owns a 2.12 ERA right now, with opposing hitters batting just .210 off him. Whitley has struck out thirteen in three games, while walking just six. Jacob Lindgren made two appearances this week, each for 0.2 innings. He allowed only one hit, two walks and struck out three. He owns a 2.98 ERA over seven games and has opposing hitters batting just .206.

Tyler Austin had a tough week, going just 3-28 with one RBI. He took only one walk and struck out seven times.…

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Prospect Profile: Jorge Mateo

Jorge_MateoIt’s been a while since I did a prospect profile, so I thought I’d start this year with Jorge Mateo, the Charleston RiverDogs’ shortstop. Now that he is playing his first full season of professional baseball, the young middle infielder is garnering a lot of attention, so let’s look at why.

Jorge Luis Mateo
Born: June 23, 1995
Height: 6’0
Weight: 188
Bats: Right
Throws: RightPosition: Shortstop

Mateo was signed by the Yankees for $250,000 in January of 2012. He started his career in the Dominican Leagues, appearing in 14 games in 2012 and then 64 in 2013. It has been evident from day one that speed is Mateo’s game, and he managed to swipe 49 bags in 2013, a number he looks sure to easily eclipse this season.

In 2014, Mateo made his first appearance stateside, hitting .276/.354/.397 over sixteen games in the Gulf Coast League, though he missed a good chunk of time due to a wrist injury.…

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