They New York Yankees have a lot of talented prospects in their farm system that can help build winnings teams for the future. Of those prospects, 22-year-old Gary Sanchez has been tearing it up in the Arizona Fall League, and can be the next great Yankee catcher. Current backstop, Brian McCann, posted career highs in RBI’s and home runs in 2015, collecting the American League Silver Slugger award at catcher. While McCann is still relatively young at 31, he can’t catch forever. Having Gary Sanchez on the major league roster behind McCann will give him experience that he can use when he takes over the everyday catching duties when McCann is gone.
Gary Sanchez has been moving up throughout the Yankees minor league system for the past six seasons, and his production has been steady. A career .274 hitter in the minors, Sanchez has belted 89 home runs and driven in 378 runs across 565 games played. Sanchez does have limited major league experience, going hitless in his two at-bats during the last game of 2015. Throughout his career, Sanchez has consistently been ranked in the top 100 prospects by Baseball America, MLB.com and Baseball Prospectus. In 2015, he is ranked number fifth in the Yankees organization and the eighth best catching prospect in baseball. Sanchez has made a name for himself in the Arizona Fall League in 2015, most likely rising in the ranks amongst baseball prospects.
While there are a lot of big names in the AFL, including many top draft picks and guys who signed multi-million dollar contracts, the name at the top of most offensive category is Gary Sanchez. He led the league with seven home runs, drove in 21, finished second in slugging, 15th in average, and fourth in OPS. Sanchez had 26 hits, including six doubles and a triple across the 22 games he appeared in.
Sanchez’s presence with the bat is almost as impressive as his work behind the dish. Sanchez threw out 38 percent of potential basestealers, second best in the league. While Sanchez has proven he is ready to play on baseball’s biggest stage, he still to grow and develop a little more.
Leaving Sanchez in the minors for another year won’t help him or the Yankees. Brian McCann is one of, if not the best catcher in baseball, and having Sanchez in the same clubhouse will greatly help him. Sanchez can learn from one of the game’s best, as well as get spot starts here and there to further develop his game more. Sanchez is not only one of the games most promising young offensive catchers, but is an outstanding defensive catcher as well. The 22-year-old has developed a lot during his career in the Yankees minor league system, and it is time for the Yankees to stop keeping him in the minors and give him the permanent call to the majors. Gary Sanchez has earned the right to be on the Opening Day roster, and can be the next great Yankee backstop.