Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Welcome to Yankee Stadium: Gary Sanchez

With the new youth movement going down in the Bronx, the dominoes have started to fall in terms of prospects getting the call.  In a move that people have been waiting more than half a decade for, Gary Sanchez has been promoted to the major league club.  This is not his first promotion to the Bronx but hopefully this one will finally bring some impact.

Sanchez was originally a high priced ($3 million) international signing out of the Dominican Republic in July of 2009.  As will happen when that kind of money is spent on a prospect, fans have been following Sanchez's career from the beginning.  Even before he played a single game he was listed as the Yankees #7 prospect here.

In his first season of professional ball, 2010, he started the season in the Gulf Coast League.  However, he only lasted 31 games because he hit .353 with 11 doubles, 6 homers, 25 runs and 36 RBIs.  This earned him a promotion to the Staten Island Yankees.  He played his remaining 16 games that season in Staten Island.  There his numbers were not as impressive as he hit .278 with 2 doubles, 2 homers, 8 runs and 7 RBIs.  After this season his ranking as a prospect went up and Baseball America had him behind only Jesus Montero as the #2 Yankees prospect.

The 2011 season started with a promotion to the Charleston RiverDogs.  He spent his entire 82 game season in Charleston and hit .256 with 16 doubles, 17 homers, 49 runs and 52 RBIs.  After this season his star fell a little in the rankings.  The hot play by Manny Banuelos and Dellin Betances dropped Sanchez to 4th on Baseball America's list.

In 2012 Sanchez again started in Charleston after the lackluster 2011 showing.  However, this round went much better for him as he only played 68 games at Charleston that season hitting .297 with 19 doubles, 13 homers, 44 runs and 56 RBIs.  Midway through the season he was promoted to the Tampa Yankees.  There he again took some time to adjust and hit .279 with 10 doubles, 5 homers, 21 runs and 29 RBIs in 48 games.  After this season there was quite the shakeup in the Baseball America rankings and he moved up to 3rd but his time behind Mason Williams and Slate Heathcott.

For the second year in a row Sanchez started where he had ended the year before, starting 2013 again in Tampa.  But as it was the year before he didn't make it through a full season.  He played 94 games in Tampa hitting .254 with 21 doubles, 13 homers, 38 runs and 61 RBIs.  He was then promoted to the Trenton Thunder.  In Trenton, Sanchez hit .250 with 6 doubles, 2 homers, 12 runs and 10 RBIs in the final 23 games.  With his movement up to Double A, Gary Sanchez finally became the Yankees top prospect for this season.

The next year, 2014, started much like the last two, in the same place it ended.  However, this season would see Sanchez spend his entire 110 games in Trenton.  There he would hit .270 with 19 doubles, 13 homers, 48 runs and 65 RBIs.  With an influx of new talent in the minors that year, Sanchez dropped to only the #5 prospect this year.

At the start of the next year, Sanchez, was still in Trenton.  But in 2015 he only spent 58 games there, hitting .262 with 14 doubles, 12 homers, 33 runs and 36 RBIs.  He was then promoted to his final minor league stop with the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders.  There he played 35 games and hit .295 with 9 doubles, 6 homers, 17 runs and 26 RBIs.  At the end of this season he was promoted to the big league club but only got 2 at bats and no hits.  With his move up to Triple A and a brief major league stint, Sanchez this season moved back up to the #2 prospect in the system.

This season he started back in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and has play all but 1 game at this level so far this year.  He was called up earlier in the year to the big league team but only played 1 game and was hit less in 4 at bats.  In the minors this year he hit .285 with 21 doubles, 10 homers, 39 runs and 50 RBIs.

Gary Sanchez has always been a big name Yankees prospect since he was signed.  Below is a good chart to see his ranking journey as a prospect overall in the minors from Baseball America.
Prospect Ratings by Baseball America:
Pre-2011: Rated #30 Prospect
Pre-2012: Rated #81 Prospect
Pre-2013: Rated #57 Prospect
Pre-2014: Rated #35 Prospect
Pre-2016: Rated #36 Prospect

As I mentioned above this should not be the first big time prospect to be called up shortly by the Yankees.  With the trade of Carlos Betran I would not be surprised to see a outfielder, potentially Aaron Judge, get the call in the upcoming weeks or maybe even days.

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