Sunday, August 14, 2016

Welcome to Yankee Stadium: Aaron Judge

As should have been a surprise to nobody reading this blog, Aaron Judge, was called up to the major league squad.  The 3 HRs he hit in the last 5 games gave the Yankees no excuse for not calling him up after Alex Rodriguez's final game.  Judge was called up with Tyler Austin (who has his own post forthcoming) and they even hit back to back HRs in their big league debut.

Aaron Judge was drafted by the Yankees in the 1st round (32nd pick) or the 2013 draft out of Cal State-Fresno.  This was not his first time being drafted as he was picked in the 31st round in 2010 by the A's but did not sign.

His professional career began in 2014 in Charleston (A - Full Season) where over 65 games he hit .333 with 15 doubles, 9 HRs, 36 runs and 45 RBIs.  This earned him a promotion to Tampa where he played his remaining 66 games of the season.  There he hit .283 with 9 doubles, 8 HRs, 44 runs and 33 RBIs.    

Going into the 2015 season Judge was considered a top 70 prospect by Baseball America, MLB.com and Baseball Prospectus.  On top of these accolades he was also promoted to start the season in Trenton.  That season he played 63 games in Trenton hitting .284 with 16 doubles, 12 HRs, 36 runs and 44 RBIs.  He was again promoted mid-season as he was on a fast track to the majors as one of the top prospects.  However, his first try at AAA in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre didn't go as he had hoped.  In 61 games he hit .224 with 10 doubles, 8 HRs, 27 runs and 28 RBIs.

After an up and down 2015 campaign he was still considered a top prospect around baseball.  Even as high as being Baseball Prospectus' 18th overall prospect.  This year, before his call up, he had spent the whole season at Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.  Although he did suffer a minor injury during the season he was able to play 93 games.  There he hit .270 with a 18 doubles, 19 HRs, 62 runs and 65 RBIs.

Since being a first round draft pick Aaron has been on the radar and has as mentioned above was a top prospect over the last couple season.  Here were his exact overall rankings:
Prospect Ratings by Baseball America:
Pre-2015: Rated #53 Prospect
Pre-2016: Rated #76 Prospect
Prospect Ratings by MLB.com:
Pre-2015: Rated #68 Prospect
Pre-2016: Rated #31 Prospect
Prospect Ratings by BaseballProspectus.com:
Pre-2015: Rated #49 Prospect
Pre-2016: Rated #18 Prospect

In terms of top Yankees prospects he has also been up there over the last few years.  These are all according to Baseball America.  In 2014 they had him at #6, moved up to #2 in 2015 and then started this season at #3.  

With Gary Sanchez, Aaron Judge and Tyler Austin being called up it will be interesting to see who gets the call on September 1st.  These three prospects have been identified as the top MLB ready talent the Yankees have.  However, I wouldn't be surprised to see the likes of Clint Frazier. Ben Gamel, or Jake Cave come up when the rosters expand.




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