After not getting a job in the Bronx, New York Yankees shortstop prospect Tyler Wade is putting on a show in Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.Perhaps when the New York Yankees chose Ronald Torreyes over Tyler Wade to fill the shortstop vacancy left by Didi Gregorius‘ shoulder injury, it lit a fire under New York’s 11th best prospect.
In this first 11 games at the Triple-A level, Wade owns the sixth-best batting average (.386) in the International League and is leading the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders in that same category. He’s also third in on-base percentage, second in total bases and has scored the most runs among his teammates.
One week ago (April 12), he had his first signature game at the level before the major leagues. Facing the Lehigh Valley IronPigs at PNC Field, Wade registered a sac-fly and two stolen bases while going 4-for-5 in an eventual 10-6 win.
On Tuesday, he put on yet another show with a 3-for-5 day featuring a double, a RBI and a run scored against the Louisville Bats. So far, Tyler Wade has reached base in all but one of his first 11 games played at the Triple-A level.
All this comes after a spring training showcase in which he slashed .357/.400/.452 with an OPS of .852 while not making a single error in 53 innings at shortstop. We know why he didn’t get the call on April 2, but perhaps his major league ETA is fastly approaching thanks to this sweltering start to the 2017 regular season.
Wade has been tried by the Yankees’ brass at many positions beyond short over the years such as second base, left field, centerfield and third base while his defensive skills profile him best to fit as a second baseman or in a super-utility role. New York is preparing the prospect for the latter role like Ben Zobrist or Brock Holt.
So, while making his major league debut in 2017 seems pretty far-fetched unless injuries completely decimate the organization, Wade has become a pretty intriguing option down on the farm.
He’s clearly versatile and has contributed quite well offensively (minor league slash line of .270/.351/.346) with solid speed (99 stolen bases in 450 games). He really found his way under the spotlight after his performance in Tampa this spring, but for a few years now, he has emerged as a sneaky-productive minor league and despite the fact that he’s not as highly touted as Clint Frazier or Gleyber Torres, he can become an asset in the Bronx sooner rather than later.