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Philip Hughes and Baseball America?

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  • Philip Hughes and Baseball America?

    Can anyone give a good description of Philip Hughes? I know he's become the gem of the Yankees system, with favorable comparisons to Mark Prior (before his injury problems), but anyone have anything more specific?

    I tried reading about Hughes at Baseball America's website, because they have been releasing their farm system evaluations. I don't have a subscription and couldn't read the Yankees report. But the summary sounded very good for the Yankees lower system - seems like the Yanks have collected a good amount of very young talent (that's some years away from being Major League ready). Can anyone summarize the Baseball America report?

  • #2
    I'll try my best to summarize it. They ranked them as such:

    1) Phil Hughes
    2) Eric Duncan
    3) Jose Tabata
    4) CJ Henry
    5) Austin Jackson
    6) Eduardo Nunez
    7) Marcos Vechionacci
    8) Christian Garcia
    9) Jeff Marquez
    10) Tyler Clippard

    As for Hughes, they say his fastball sits around 92-94 with great command, but he can dial it up and add a little more when needed. Perhaps most impressive is that he's compiled all his impressive minor league numbers so far without possibly his best pitch, a slider, that the Yankees didn't let him use in order to protect his arm. He now has permission to use it, so you can imagine how much nastier he can be. They note that injury is probably the only thing that can stop him at this point.

    Tabata, just 17-years old, has enormous upside.

    CJ Henry is an outstanding athlete, but has a few things to work on, for example his long swing. Fortunately, we currently have Jeter blocking SS, so Henry will have plenty of time to work out his flaws in the minors.

    Austin Jackson has been on the prospect radar since he was 12-years old (BP notes that they rated him the best player in his age group at ages 12 and 15). Nobody drafted him early, assuming he'd choose basketball over baseball, but the Yankees threw $800,000 at him and got him signed (most money ever for an 8th round pick). A definite steal. BP says he's drawing comparisons to Jeter for his ability to hit the ball the other way, but he's raw; needs to bulk up and add power.

    Nunez was the third-youngest position player in the New-York Penn League, and tore it up. Needs to work on his footwork at SS.

    Vechionacci was moved from SS to 3B, and showed that he will be a fantastic defensive third baseman. They want him to add some power at the plate.

    Most probably thought Clippard would be in the top 5 somewhere, but the fact that BP has Garcia and Marquez ahead of him is a testament to the surplus of good young arms we have in the lower levels of the minors.

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    • #3
      Thanks Pace! What position do all of these guys play? And nothing on Melky Cabrera?

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      • #4
        No problem X. I was surprised to see that Melky didn't make the list too, but I guess it makes sense, since they're considering upside. These are their positions:

        1) Phil Hughes - SP
        2) Eric Duncan - 3B (will soon move to 1B, I think he played there in the AFL too)
        3) Jose Tabata - CF
        4) CJ Henry - SS
        5) Austin Jackson - OF
        6) Eduardo Nunez - SS
        7) Marcos Vechionacci - 3B (recently moved from SS)
        8) Christian Garcia - SP
        9) Jeff Marquez - SP
        10) Tyler Clippard - SP

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        • #5
          I am definitely excited about the Yankees minor leaguers. I hope these guys are the real deal. In a few years, the Yankees can use some of these guys on their major league roster. I hope the Yankees seriously develop the farm so they can contribute in a couple of years.

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          • #6
            I think I've read in places that the Yanks have a very good closer prospect in the low levels. Is that right? I don't think I recongized his name on the lists, and I can't remember it.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by DoubleX
              I think I've read in places that the Yanks have a very good closer prospect in the low levels. Is that right? I don't think I recongized his name on the lists, and I can't remember it.
              I think you may be thinking of J. Brent Cox. He wasn't on the list but he's one of the top young relievers in the farm. I believe he was Huston Street's successor in college and did an admirable job. I've heard plenty of goods things about him.
              After an offseason scare with blood clots, Shelley Duncan said yesterday he feels "wonderful -- like a stallion"

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              • #8
                Originally posted by monkey333
                I think you may be thinking of J. Brent Cox. He wasn't on the list but he's one of the top young relievers in the farm. I believe he was Huston Street's successor in college and did an admirable job. I've heard plenty of goods things about him.
                Yep, that's him! Thanks monkey! I think I was reading an article in which he was mentioned as being one of these new-breed of pitchers that are groomed in college to be closers (whereas before, pitchers were converted to being closers after being drafted). So he was essentially drafted as a closer. Other players that the article mentioned I believer were Huston Street and Chad Cordero. I'll have to see if I can find that article again and post it here if its on the internet.

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                • #9
                  any chance we see philiph hughs this season?

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Tinyballer
                    any chance we see philiph hughs this season?
                    I say virtually no chance. The Yanks are being very patient with Hughes, as they should be. Not too mention, despite his great stuff he has only been in low A and needs more minor league experience. A guy we're likely to see if enough guys go down would be Matt DeSalvo. Not spectacular but I've read he's got a great change-up.
                    After an offseason scare with blood clots, Shelley Duncan said yesterday he feels "wonderful -- like a stallion"

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                    • #11
                      I lived in Santa Ana and saw Hughes throw. I go to his High school, and he hit 97 one day when I was out practicing on the J.V. field (while they had the foothill tournament). He is having trouble with injuries and developing other pitches, but he can bring it.
                      Last edited by LilJeter; 02-01-2006, 10:44 PM.
                      "You go up to the plate, knowing you are going to hit this guy, and guess what? You will hit him."

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