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. In the month of April, he hit .329/.386/.443. He a homer, a triple and pair of doubles, along with eleven RBIs and eight walks. Strikeouts were a problem, as he had fifteen. It is also worth noting that Heathcott is showing no signs of slowing down.
Ramon Flores (Scranton): Flores has also been a major part of the RailRiders' offense this season. He hit .303/.378/.576 in April - oh yeah, and he hit for the cycle in the very first game of the season. Flores knocked four homers and doubles last month, driving in ten runs for Scranton. The outfielder seems to thrive under pressure, hitting .391 when there are two outs as opposed to .188 with no outs.
Mason Williams (Trenton): Williams was another prospect who had started to fall off the radar a bit after some behavior issues were coupled with some mediocre performances the last couple season. Hopefully that is all a thing of the past, as Williams started the season hitting .323/.403/.355 in April. He also drew nine walks and stole eight bases, getting caught three times.
Aaron Judge (Trenton): The big outfielder continues to mash at the plate for Trenton, hitting .295/.333/.474 last month. He had nine RBIs on three homers, a triple and three doubles. The flip side, of course, is that he is striking out often, with 24 Ks in nineteen games and only four walks. That being said, much like Heathcott, Judge has started May even stronger.
Matt Snyder (Tampa): Tampa is the team I have been least excited about, but Snyder is giving Tampa Yankees fans something fun to watch. He has been the main force behind the Yankees' offense, hitting .333/.415/.449 in April with seventeen RBIs, two homers and two doubles.
Rookie Davis (Tampa): Davis started 2015 on fire, going 1-1 over four starts and 21.2 innings. He had a 1.66 ERA and 26 strikeouts, while only allowing three walks. Davis held opposing hitters to a paltry .167 average.
Abiatal Avelino (Charleston): Avelino has since been promoted to Tampa, having hit .304/.345/.405 last month. Avelino may not have much power, but he has put his speed on display early and often this year. He swiped 15 bases in nineteen games and hit eight doubles. If he can work on drawing more walks and not striking out so often, Avelino will really be able to take advantage of that speed.
Dustin Fowler (Charleston): I will admit that Fowler has not been on my radar whatsoever, but he put together a month of April that could not be ignored. The outfielder who was drafted in the 18th round of the 2013 draft has been leading the offensive assault for the RiverDogs. He hit .304/.329/.418 with eleven RBIs, a homer, a triple and four doubles.
While that is it for my list, there were certainly a good number to choose from. Look for the Not Hot list coming shortly.