Six years of Yankees drafts

Damon OppenheimerBelow is a list of all of the players the Yankees have signed over the past six years (with the exception of 2013 because it means nothing so far). In parenthesis is the round they were drafted in and the highest level they played at this season.

A few things strike me about this list. First of all, every draft year the Yankees have an amount of active players which is a multiple of five, except for this year’s draft. Interestingly, there are 10 from 2008, 15 from 2009, 15 from 2010, 20 from 2011, and 25 from 2012. I do wonder if there is something to that. The question is whether it’s a pattern or a coincidence. Probably a little bit of both. That makes for a total of 85 players from the draft that are still in the Yankees’ system, and 116 if you include the 2013 draft.

What does this all mean? Probably not much. A total of eight players from the last six drafts have seen time in the majors for the Yankees, including one who was traded (DJ Mitchell), mostly from the 2008 draft. Anyway, looking through the six most recent drafts in depth has given me a lot of insight into organizational strategies and how they have changed over time. It does seem that the Yankees have put the most emphasis on the draft in 2012 and 2013. Hopefully that bodes well for the future and this trend will continue in 2014.


(1s) Jeremy Bleich (AAA)
(3) David Adams (MLB)
(4) Corban Joseph (MLB)
(6) Brett Marshall (MLB)
(7) Kyle Higashioka (AA)
(8) Dan Brewer (released)
(9) Mikey O’Brien (AA)
(10) DJ Mitchell (traded for Ichiro)
(11) Ray Kruml (released)
(12) Luke Greinke (released)
(13) Jack Rye (released)
(14) David Phelps (MLB)
(15) Matthew Richardson (released)
(17) Addison Maruszak (AAA)
(18) Brandon Braboy (released)
(19) Mitch Abeita (released)
(20) Pat Venditte (AAA)
(21) Mitchell Delaney (released)
(22) Cory Arbiso (released)
(23) Ryan Wilkes (released)
(24) Mike Lyon (released)
(25) Jeff Nutt (released)
(27) Garrison Lassiter (released)
(28) Chad Gross (released)
(29) Mike Jones (released)
(31) Spencer Lucian (released)
(33) Tommy Baldridge (released)
(34) Brad Rulon (released)
(35) Andrew Shive (released)
(39) Erik Lovett (released)
(42) Clint Preisendorfer (released)
(47) Ryan Flannery (released)
(50) Nik Turley (AAA)

MLB – 4
AAA- 4
AA- 2
Total Active: 10
Released (22)
There are a couple of players who were drafted by the Yankees but not signed playing for other organizations. One is Gerritt Cole. There are no other notable players.


(1s) Slade Heathcott (AA)
(2s) JR Murphy (MLB)
(4) Adam Warren (MLB)
(5) Caleb Cotham (AAA)
(6) Robert Lyerly (AA)
(7) Sean Black (AA)
(8) Sam Elam (released)
(9) Gavin Brooks (released)
(11) Neil Medchill (AA)
(12) Brett Gerritse (Low-A)
(13) DeAngelo Mack (released)
(14) Graham Stoneburner (AAA)
(15) Shane Greene (AA)
(16) Bryan Mitchell (AA)
(18) Hector Rabago (High-A)
(19) Luke Murton (released)
(23) Kevin Mahoney (AAA)
(24) Issac Harrow (released)
(25) Shaeffer Hall (released, now in Oakland’s minor league system)
(27) Jeff Farnham (High-A)
(31) Judd Golsan (released)
(37) Justin Milo (released)
(40) Ben Watkins (released)
(41) Mariel Checo (GCL)
(43) Isaiah Brown (released)
(44) Evan DeLuca (released)
(47) Shane Brown (AA)

MLB – 1
AAA – 4
AA – 6
High-A – 1
Low-A -1
GCL – 1
Total Active: 15
released – 10
Notable unsigned players: (10) Tyler Lyons – MLB for St. Louis. (33) Andrew Aplin was drafted in the 5th round in 2012 by Houston, and hit 9 HR with a .278/.376/.424/.800 line and 24 SB in AA at the age of 22. (34) Jake Petricka was signed in the 2nd round by the Chicago White Sox in 2010, and pitched 54.2 IP as a reliever in AA-AAA and had 58 K and a 1.81 ERA at the age of 25. He also pitched a few innings in the majors and has a 3.26 ERA. (45) Jeremy Baltz was drafted in the 2nd round in 2012 by San Diego and Hit .293/.348/.481/.829 with 15 HR between low and high-A this year as a 22 year old LF.


(1) Cito Culver (High-A)
(2) Angelo Gumbs (High-A)
(3) Rob Segedin (AA)
(4) Mason Williams (AA)
(5) Tommy Kahnle (AA)
(6) Gabe Encinas (Low-A)
(7) Jake Anderson (GCL)
(8) Kyle Roller (AA)
(9) Taylor Morton (retired)
(10) Ben Gamel (AA)
(11) Zachary Varce (High-A)
(12) Danny Burawa (AA)
(13) Tyler Austin (AA)
(15) Chase Whitley (AAA)
(16) Evan Rutckyj (Low-A)
(17) Preston Claiborne (MLB)
(20) Mike Ferraro (released)
(21) Dustin Hobbs (released)
(22) Trevor Johnson (released)
(23) Shane Brown (AA)
(24) Conor Mullee (released)
(25) Casey Stevenson (AAA)
(30) Zach Nuding (AA)
(31) Mike Gipson (released)
(32) Kramer Sneed (traded)
(35) William Oliver (released)
(36) Nick McCoy (released)
(46) Nathan Forer (released)
(47) Fred Lewis (AA)

MLB – 1
AAA – 2
AA – 10
High-A – 3
Low-A – 2
GCL – 1
Total Active – 20
Released/retired – 9
Notable unsigned – (26) RJ Hively was drafted in the 19th round by Arizone in 2012 and pitched 59.2 innings of 1.81 ERA ball with 68 K in relief. (43) Kyle Hunter was drated in the 31st round by Seattle in 2011 and had a 1.8 ERA in 70 innings between High-A and Double-A with 55 K this year.


(1s) Dante Bichette Jr. (Low-A)
(3) Jordan Cote (GCL)
(4) Matt Duran (GCL)
(5) Greg Bird (Low-A)
(6) Jake Cave (Low-A)
(7) Austin Jones (Staten Island)
(8) Phil Wetherell (Low-A)
(9) Zach Arneson (High-A)
(11) Mark Montgomery (AAA)
(12) Cody Grice (AAA)
(13) Justin James (released)
(14) Rookie Davis (Low-A)
(16) Branden Pinder (AA)
(18) Hayden Sharpe (retired)
(19) Ben Paullus (High-A)
(20) Dan Camarena (Low-A)
(21) Zach Wilson (High-A)
(22) Nick Goody (injured – High-A)
(23) Corey Maines (released)
(24) Matt Tracy (AA)
(25) Adam Smith (Low-A)
(27) Chaz Hebert (Staten Island)
(30) John Brebbia (High-A Tampa)
(31) Joseph Maher (GCL)

AAA – 2
AA – 2
High-A – 5
Low-A – 7
SI – 2
GCL – 3
Total Active – 20
Released/Retired – 3
Notable unsigned – (10) Jonathan Gray was the 3rd overall pick in the 2013 draft by the Rockies, needless to say he has dominated so far reaching High-A.


(1) Ty Hensley (GCL)
(2s) Austin Aune (GCL)
(2) Peter O’Brien (High-A)
(3) Nathan Mikolas (GCL)
(4) Corey Black (traded)
(5) Rob Refsnyder (High-A)
(6) Nick Goody (injured – High-A)
(7) Taylor Garrison (High-A)
(8) Taylor Dugas (High-A)
(9) Derek Varnadore (Low-A)
(10) Matt Snyder (High-A)
(11) Caleb Frare (Injured – GCL)
(12) Chris Breen (GCL)
(13) James Pazos (Low-A)
(14) Andrew Benak (SI)
(15) Dayton Dawe (GCL)
(16) Stefan Lopez (SI)
(17) Tim Flight (GCL)
(18) Brady Lail (High-A, but really GCL)
(19) Dietrich Enns (High-A)
(24) Jose Mesa (GCL)
(26) Charlie Haslup (SI)
(27) Danny Oh (Low-A)
(29) Jose Diaz (GCL)
(33) Saxon Butler (AA)
(34) Eric Erickson (injured or released)
(36) Dalton Smith (GCL)
(37) Charles Basford (Traded)

AA – 1
High-A – 7
Low-A – 3
SI – 3
GCL – 11
Total Active – 25
Traded – 1
Notable unsigned – (40) Sherman Lacrus signed in the 27th round by the Texas Rangers and hit .330/.440/.413/.854 with 3 HR and 8 SB as a 19 year old in the GCL.

2013 – 31 signed, Low-A – 2 , SI – 18, GCL – 10 Did not play – Aaron Judge

This entry was posted in 2011 MLB Draft, 2012 MLB Draft, 2013 MLB Draft, BBDP, Down on the Farm, Minor League Monday. Bookmark the permalink.

17 Responses to Six years of Yankees drafts

  1. Bob Loblaw says:

    Off the top of my head I can see three mistakes. Murton and McCoy have been released. But how do you have Murphy's peak at AAA? Last I knew he caught a few games in the big leagues.

  2. Tanned Tom says:

    Not sure how other teams have done, but my first reaction is unfavorable. Phelps and Adams are the best they've done over the last 5 years? That sucks. When you crap out with 1st rounders repeatedly someone should lose their job.

    • gcorcoran says:

      It's not that black and white. Where the Yankees draft there's about a 15% chance of becoming an effective major leaguer on average. You can't get upset about players like that flopping. That said Bleich is still with the team, Cito Culver had a major resurgence at the end of last season, Slade Heathcott still has a ton of talent and is still very much in play to become an effective major leaguer, and it's far to early to tell with Ty Hensley, Aaron Judge, Ian Clarkin, and Eric Jagielo.

      I think we can all agree that not signing Geritt Cole sucked, and that Dante Bichette Jr. is a flop until proven otherwise.

      • gcorcoran says:

        Aside from that, however, you can't judge a draft by the first round draft pick, especially when you draft so late in the first round. The Yankees have done a great job finding talent past the 200th pick. In fact, the Yankees have developed more of those players successfully than all but three other organizations. This is almost as important as finding talent in the first 200 picks.

        I'm not saying the Yankees shouldn't make changes, in fact they should continue to try to get better at this whole process. There is more to it however than criticizing the team for their first round draft picks. In addition, they have been making changes where they see issues. They brought in Gil Patterson, which we need to give a chance to work. They also just fired their strength and conditioning coach, and more changes are bound to come.

        • Tanned Tom says:

          Of course you are probably right, yet it seems that other teams are doing much better with their drafts. The last few years have seen tons of young impact players spring up all over the game – except in the Bronx. We've also seen numerous Latin America and Asian players step in and do well – again, except in the Bronx. The organization is on a mission to reduce payroll, and in any case more teams can afford to sign their own stars long term thanks to the t.v. revenue that is washing over the sport, yet still is inactive in international signings. That doesn't make sense to me.
          If we live in a new era, where you cannot count on being able to reload on the free agent market, then they are going to have to improve in drafting and developing players. Also they have been slow to realize that free agent signings without draft pick compensation attached is critical. Boston rebuilt with Victorino and Napoli without losing their picks. We trade for, and re-sign, Suzuki. Boston dumps their insane contracts on the Dodgers, we keep Sabathia and Teixeira – never even approached them about waiving their no trade clauses, and are now saddled with 2 terrible contracts.
          Seems Cashman knows one trick, to sign or acquire old or retread players. That will not break the cycle of old, injury-prone rosters.

          • gcorcoran says:

            I think you really picked up on one thing other teams are doing better than the Yankees in recent years (until this year). Stockpiling first round draft picks by letting people walk and not signing free agents who will cost them picks. The Yankees are definitely late to the party there. That his how St. Louis has been able to pump out so many good players (although they also had many players drafted before the Yankees ever picked).

            As far as signing old retreads, I agree that Cashman is good at it, but I don't agree that he is wrong for doing it in most cases. Ichiro should not have been given two years, I agree. Trading for Vernon Wells did us no good, although he is free this year and we don't need to keep him. Trading for Soriano was a good move, especially considering how cheap he will be in 2014. I don't blame Cash or anyone else for the one year signings though. They needed to fill a position and there were no rookies ready to step up. That's all they could really do in that situation. Now we are at the 2014 "austerity budget," so the BS 1 year old man deals should be ending now.

  3. James Dogg says:

    St Louis is in their 4th WS in last 7 years having already won 2. I believe they have 5 players on their WS roaster this year from their 2009 draft. Drafting and developing players is a real area the yanks need to improve.

    • gcorcoran says:

      Agreed. I think they get it though. Each year for the past four years they have put more and more resources into trying to improve at drafting and developing. They've hired more scouts, hired better scouts, hired Gil Patterson, fired their strength and conditioning coach (recently), and hired new coaches in the minors each year. I can't argue with the steps they've taken to improve. I think the system is on the rise from this moment forward.

  4. Bronx Bo says:

    I agree with pretty much everything said so far. Like I've said in previous articles before they have passed on good high school talent to get SEC relievers and give them $100,000 bonuses ( Goody, Rumbelow, Kendrick). I know this year they went $110,000 over their bonus budget but it seems like they can draft better players. Pending on who the Yanks tender and if they go after players that will get tenderd like McCann, Beltran, Choo, they need to make next years draft count!

  5. dayners81 says:

    Not signing Cole and Grey absolutely sucked, imagine how much better the future of our rotation would be if we had those 2.
    I personally don't think the Yanks biggest problem has been drafting or signing quality talent. Its been with their development process, especially with their better pitching prospects.Even though he's gone now, the way they handled Joba and even Hughes to a point was awful. The Yanks also seem to have an extremely high amount of their pitching prospects get hurt, much higher than other organizations. I really think that hiring Patterson was a huge step in the right direction and will hopefully start to show the benefits in the next 1-2 yrs.

    As far as hitters go its pretty sad for an org like the Yanks who could spend more money than anyone else until the last couple yrs, having only developed Cano and Gardner in the last 6 plus yrs. We currently have some very very talented hitter in our system right now but they absolutely have to do a better job developing them or this team will be in bad shape until they figure out a much better way to do it then we currently do. With teams locking up their good young players before they hit FA and all the TV money that teams are starting to see and willing to spend on FA theirs no way were going to be able to primarily count on FA signings anymore.

    I know most people think that signing 3-4 top FA this winter should be our top priority but to me a complete overhaul of our scouting, MILB coaching and special instructors is way more important, also a complete overhaul of our training staff would be a bad idea either. Those areas are about the only area anymore that the MLB doesn't restrict spending on, with all the money the Yanks have if i were in charge i would go out and spend whatever it takes to get as many of the top guys in our org to improve our MILB system.

    I also think they need to change their philosophy about signing older IFA's, their have been a very very good group of players that have come out of Cuba that we completely passed on and some great pitchers that have come out of Asian that we showed very little interest in because of 1 bad experience with Igawa. It still baffles me that we only bid 18M on Darvish and never really had any interest in Ryu. Hopefully they can land this Tanaka kid they are appear to be after but IMO they really missed the boat the last 3-4 yrs

    People can blame alot of it on where we draft and all that but their are other top teams that draft in similar positions as we do and do alot better job than we are currently doing. It just pisses me off that a team like the Cards are back in the WS for 4th time in 7yrs and they have 17 or 18 homegrown players on their roster..

    I just want to see the Yanks continue being a top team and for that to happen we need to get alot better in every aspect of our MILB system starting with scouting all the way up to the MILB farm director

    • gcorcoran says:

      The Cards have done a great job stockpiling first round draft picks, and that's a big reason why their farm has been so good. They also draft higher than the Yankees almost every year based on record (obviously not this year).

      I think the development side of things is more to blame than the draft. The problem is that development is such a complex art that it will be difficult to locate the area of problem. I think we can be pretty certain it's not Gil Patterson, but outside of that we can't say much else. The Yankees have been essentially auditing anyone who has anything to do with the minor leagues in their organization. So far they found a problem with strength and conditioning, and have addressed it. We will see what other heads will roll as the offseason progresses.

      That said, all of this could still be due to poor draft position, not keeping enough of their own draft picks, not acquiring enough draft picks from other teams, bad luck, and injuries. It's probably a combination of all of the above factors.

  6. Gerry says:

    Jon gray was drafted by the Rockies, and yes he was freakishly dominant. Great read, thanks for writing it.

  7. A different Mike says:

    Kramer Sneed was part of trade for Vernon Wells, he was not released.

  8. gcorcoran says:

    That he was, been meaning to change that one.

  9. rl1856 says:

    The Yankees have no control over when they draft, only who they draft. Looking at who we drafted and how they developed may give an incomplete picture of the problem. Looking at who the Yankees did not draft provides some insight into how well Oppenheimer and company evaluate talent. For any given draft choice there are likely 1-5 players considered before deciding which player to draft. Is it possible to find out who was drafted by other teams with the choices immediately following a Yankee draft pick (say the next 2-4 choices), and then comparing their development to the development of Yankee picks ? If the progress of these players is significantly better than what we have accomplished then we know that Oppenheimer and Co did a horrible job of evaluating talent.

    • Greg Corcoran says:

      I have seen such analysis although I don’t have the statistics in front of me. Long story short there is not much in the way of success around where the Yankees draft.

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