Baseball America ranked the top 10 Yankees prospects.
Here’s what they had:
1. Joba Chamberlain, rhp
2. Austin Jackson, of
3. Jose Tabata, of
4. Ian Kennedy, rhp
5. Alan Horne, rhp
6. Jesus Montero, c
7. Jeff Marquez, rhp
8. Brett Gardner, of
9. Ross Ohlendorf, rhp
10. Andrew Brackman, rhp
Note: Phil Hughes had too many innings to be considered a prospect by BA’s rules.
Ranking prospects is a tricky business. Statistics tell you only so much because it’s so difficult to gauge the competition and ballpark factors. Certain leagues are heavy with pitchers, others with hitters. Hitting .300 in the Florida State League is pretty good. In the South Atlantic League not so much.
Baseball America’s rankings are solid because their writers talk to team executives and scouts. You need a mix of stats, scouting reports and the ability to project.
Even then, it’s still a roll of the dice. Everybody was excited about first-round pick C.J. Henry a few years ago. BA ranked him fourth in their rankings in 2006. He has yet to get out Class A ball. Traded to the Phillies as part of the Bobby Abreu trade, he was released and is back with the Yankees.
So enjoy following the prospects, but don’t fall in love. For every Derek Jeter, the Yankees had a two dozen kids who are coaching their old high school teams now.