There are three, as far as certain trio of Yankees prospects are concerned, where there may be only room for two. And the Yankees will have to address this sooner rather than later.
Glyber Torres, Tyler Wade and Jorge Mateo are three solid Yankees middle-infield prospects. As it all transpires, one could possibly be traded. It’s doubtful that one will be Torres, who, in seven Arizona Fall League games with Scottsdale, is batting .391 (9-for-23) with a pair of doubles and home runs.
Just the other day, Cubs manager Joe Maddon was heaping praise on the 19-year-old (he turns 20 Dec. 13), talking about what a good player he is and predicting an outstanding big-league career for hm, The centerpiece of the Aroldis Chapman Cubs trade, the native of Caracus, Venezuela, is indeed an elite prospect.
Wade, 21 (he’ll turn 22 Nov. 23) is coming off a solid season at Trenton, and is being tried in the outfield in Arizona. He’s an excellent player several scouts predict will have an excellent big-leagir career, but he really, without much power, projects as an outfielder in the system, especially with others more suited to the position.
Then you have the 21-year-old Mateo, who became impatient during the season when he wasn’t promoted to Double-A Trenton, played farm director and ended up being suspended for his suggesting who needed roti be released so he could fly north to the Thunder. He ended up costing himself a spot in the Futures Game.
Those who saw Mateo, a native of the Dominican capital of Santo Domingo, after the suspension thought he put forth excellent effort at Class-A Advanced Tampa. He never saw Trenton in 2016. He is no longer the top Yankees infield prospect, having ceded that position to Torres.
Chances are, if the right deal comes along, either Wade or Mateo could be traded. Such a right deal would include an above-average starring pitcher. Wade certainly couldn’t bring that back to the Yankees alone, nor, as a matter of fact, could Mateo. In a package with another big-league player and perhaps another prospect, things could happen.
Or the Yankees could decide to keep all three, and there is a way they easily could. Perhaps Torres can become the Yankees’ future third baseman. Given his power potential and strong arm, that is not an outlandish proposal. The Yankees’ only other third-base prospect in the upper minors is Miguel Andujar, who had a shaky 2016 in the field and could be lost in December’s Rule 5 Draft.
Mateo could play shortstop and Wade, who will likely start 2017 at Triple-A Scranton in 2017, second base. That way the Yankees eventually fill three holes with solid players.
Any of many factors could have either Wade or Mateo at Yankees Spring Training in March or elsewhere. Will Andujar be protected? Several teams really like Wade, and Mateo has the type of talent, despite what happened last season, to draw interest.
Torres’ presence jumbles matters a bit among these three. Each likely will make his mark in the big leagues. In the case of Wade or Mateo, it might not be with the Yankees.