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12 Days of Prospects: Day 5, Anthony Volpe

Volpe
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

12 Days of Prospects: Day 5, Anthony Volpe

Despite some trades in 2022, the New York Yankees have managed to keep a solid farm system. Leading that pack is shortstop Anthony Volpe, who ranks fifth in all of MLB. His name was thrown around in potential trades, but the Yankees made it clear he is untouchable. Let’s see why Volpe lands in the top five.

The Numbers

Scouting grades on 20-80 scale:

  • Hit: 60
  • Power: 60
  • Run: 55
  • Arm: 50
  • Field: 50
  • Overall: 60

The 2019 draft pick hasn’t made his MLB debut yet, but he finally got his first taste of Triple-A this season. He started off 2022 in Double-A, playing in 110 games. Volpe batted .251/.313/.404 with 18 home runs, 60 RBIs, and 44 stolen bases. Once called up, he only played in 22 games and didn’t find as much of a stride. Volpe batted .236 with only 21 hits, three homers, and five RBIs.

His 55-graded speed seems to be more around 65, as he stole 50 bases this past season and 89 overall in his young career. The power and hit ability are no secrets either, having 50 home runs with a .262 batting average in just three years in the minors.

The Potential

Volpe was originally seen as a hit-over-power player. He added strength and reworked his swing which helped him elevate pitches better and harder, though. Instead of projecting to be a 15-18 home run player, Volpe is seen as a potential 25-30 home run hitter with around a .280-.300 batting average.

I already touched on his incredible speed, which also helps his range out at shortstop. His arm strength is average at best, so he’ll have to rely on that range and his quick feet. If he can’t boost his defensive ability, a move to second base or even a DH role is in the cards, but the Yankees believe he has time to work on the kinks.

The Verdict

Volpe is going to start 2023 in Triple-A, and most likely will get the call midseason. While he’s still their No. 1 prospect, the Yankees have a lot of depth at shortstop that will compete with Volpe’s weak defense. Oswald Peraza, Trey Sweeney, and Oswaldo Cabrera all will be fighting for a middle infield spot, and arguably have better defense than Volpe.

Either way, Volpe has a big future with the Yankees. The team obviously believes in him since they’ve locked him from any trades, so now the 21-year-old will have to breakout to make the 2023 team. The hitting and speed is no question, it’s all whether Volpe can fix his defense to at least be average enough to stay at shortstop.

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