One of the Yankees top prospects Estevan Florial is off to a very hot start this spring but is it a big deal in the grand scheme of things?
The highly-touted lefty Yankee top prospect Estevan Florial has come into spring eager to make a name for himself for the future of the Yankees ball club. Being the number one prospect in the organization is no cake-walk, but so far so good for the 21-year-old out of the Dominican Republic.
Throughout the offseason, it was rumored by numerous MLB analysts that in order for the Yankees to upgrade their pitching rotation, they would have to include their top prospects. Justus Sheffield was shipped to Seattle for the lefty James Paxton and Florial seemingly remains put. Social media was buzzing with trade packages for the likes of Corey Kluber, Trevor Bauer, and cross-town rival Noah “Thor” Syndergaard which included the prized prospect Florial. It seemed however that Cashman would not include mlb.com’s No. 57 prospect in any deal.
With Aaron Hick’s extension, it seemed as if Florial would be stashed in the minors for the foreseeable future or a major blockbuster trade would take place. The lengthy extension presented no clear path for the stud centerfielder to implement himself as a starter in a nearly flawless lineup. There have been no suggestions about a transition to a different outfield position and some question his aggressive nature at the plate.
This spring has foreshadowed why Cashman was never interested in letting such a talented prospect go for one of the “available” starting pitchers. New York Yankees fans have seen pitchers fail in the Bronx more often than not and if Cashman decided to trade away two of their top prospects for a mediocre return, how would the fan base and the organization feel moving forward? The recent trade of Sonny Gray still leaves an asterisk in recent Yankee memory even though the haul the A’s received did not seem to pay dividends either.
Overall, with a .350 BA, .409 OBP, and an OPS of 1.009 this spring, Florial seems to be finding his niche against some major league pitching. It is for sure a small sample size, being only nine games, but one cannot help but see the oozing potential this man possesses. His sheer power and ability to swipe bags at an elite rate could make this lineup so much more devastating in the near future. For only being 21, he looks poised in the batters’ box having only faced High-A pitching.
The sky is the limit for this kid and the more seasoning he gets in the minors, who knows what he could mean to the Yankees in the quest to keep the Evil Empire in check.