David Adams, 23, is a second baseman listed at 6-2 and 190-pounds. He was born in Margate, Florida and went to college at the University of Virginia. Adams was drafted by the Tigers in the 21st round of the 2005 draft by the Tigers. He entered the draft again and was taken in the 3rd round by the Yankees.
Adams had a great bat in high school and expected to get selected high in the draft, but signability issues kept teams from drafting him until the 21st round. When the Tigers wouldn’t pay him what he wanted, he instead elected to go to college. In college he started playing second base and had a great first year. His second year he improved even more hitting .372 with a .976 OPS. Finally in his junior year he struggled bit time, but that may have helped the Yankees in a way as they were able to buy low on him in the 3rd round. His signing bonus was $333,000.
Adams went right to the Short Season A-Ball Staten Island Yankees after signing in 2008. Adams played 67 games there where he hit .257 with a .743 OPS. His defense there was rough, but because of his hustle there was room for improvement. Adams was very patient at the plate drawing 32 walks in just 297 plate appearances.
His season in Staten Island was not tremendously impressive, but it was solid and it earned him a promotion to Low-A Charleston. In 67 games in Charleston he showed a nice improvement as he hit .290 with a .779 OPS. That earned him a promotion to High-A Tampa where he continued his improvement. In 65 games with Tampa Adams hit .281, but showed a lot more power which raised his OPS to .858.
In 2010 Adams continued his improvement. In his first 39 games he hit .309 with a .900 OPS. Unfortunately his season was cut short though with what they thought was a ankle sprain, but what turned out to be a broken ankle ending his season. That doesn’t change the fact that he had an amazing start to that season and that did not go unrecognized. Despite the injury the Seattle Mariners insisted that Adams be included in any deal for pitcher Cliff Lee. Eventually the Mariners panicked and at the last minute backed out of the deal.
In most scouting reports Adams is praised for having extremely good fundamentals at the plate and for his ability to take a walk if he doesn’t get the pitches he wants. He doesn’t seem to have home run power, but could be a 40-doubles hitter.
He is an average runner and certainly not a huge stolen base threat, but he is extremely smart base runner and very aggressive too. Adams has improved his defense since becoming a pro. He is prone to botching some plays defensively, but has quick hands and can turn the double-play well. His arm strength is solid as well.
He’ll likely start the season in Double-A, but because of the success he had there last year and the fact that he’ll be 24-years-old in May could mean that a promotion won’t take long. Of course a lot of that has to do with how well he plays and if there is a need at the higher levels.
Adams seems destined to make the majors at this point, but his role is uncertain. Between his solid defense the possibility that he could become a .300 hitter makes him pretty special, but he still has a lot to prove. The problem of position could come up because he’s blocked at second base because of Robinson Cano. He doesn’t have enough power for a corner outfield spot and not enough range for shortstop. Third base could be a possibility because he does have the arm to do it.
This makes me wonder if the Yankees will try him out at third base at all this year. It probably won’t happen at first. First they’ll just let him get comfortable and establish that he is past his ankle injury. The closer he gets to the majors the more likely they’ll consider a position switch. He could be like Brandon Laird where the Yankees try a position switch with him after the season in the Arizona Fall League.