The 2019 top-100 prospects lists feature almost no New York Yankees, and that’s not a problem according to the team’s front office.
The New York Yankees farm system certainly isn’t winning any blue ribbons at the fair this year. But that’s okay, per Bombers head of amateur scouting Damon Oppenheimer.
Oppenheimer told the New York Post’s Greg Joyce that the drought on the farm is just the next phase in the organization’s master plan.
“Everything’s a cycle in this thing. You get to a point where, if you’re going to try to win, you end up trading prospects. So we’ve traded quite a few guys over the last few years to help us acquire talent to help us win at the big-league level and that’s what we’re there to do.”
New York received no love from Baseball America’s top-100 list. Furthermore, only Estevan Florial and Jonathan Loaisiga placed on MLB.com’s version, both in the bottom 50.
James Paxton, J.A. Happ, and Zack Britton—all obtained in 2018—are some of the reasons for the poor showing. Perhaps the loss of farm-system pieces even played a role in the Yankees’ decision to re-sign Happ and Britton.
Another reason for the lack of top-100 Yankees prospects is the fact that so many of them have graduated to the Bronx. For example, Baby Bombers like Gary Sanchez, Aaron Judge, and Luis Severino are all main contributors.
Therefore, Oppenheimer knows a dynasty is percolating.
“Being ranked as everybody’s top farm system isn’t our goal,” Oppenheimer told Joyce. “Our goal is to be ranked as winning the World Series and going to the playoffs and doing all that kind of stuff.”
Now, many fans are probably wondering why, if that’s true, the team hasn’t spent more in free agency this year. After all, Bryce Harper and Manny Machado are still ripe for the picking.
But that’s probably more of a question for Hal Steinbrenner. As far as Oppenheimer is concerned, his job of cycling through home-grown MLB talent is going just fine.