Spring Training is officially underway, and it looks as though the Yankees are going into camp with their 22-year old third base prospect Miguel Andujar ready to take over as the everyday third baseman. The Dominican born player is currently ranked 59th on Baseball America’s Top 100 Prospects list and is looking to prove his skillset at the major league level.
But who is Miguel Andujar? How will his game translate? For a baseline, we can use the mlb.com scouting grades:
Hit: 50 | Power: 55 | Run: 45 | Arm: 70 | Field: 50 | Overall: 55
Scouting grades are based on a 2-8 scale, with a score of 50 being the median for being considered average. Andujar grades out as favorable in all of the five tools except running, with his arm strength being by far his strongest tool.
This bodes well for his future at 3rd if he can clean up his fielding at the hot corner. As of now, Andujar is a little rough around the edges on the defensive side due to awkward footwork and weird mechanics, which can be problematic at the major league level. Taking reps during Spring Training with the coaching staff should help clean up some of those mechanical issues if he is willing to work at it. This is the most troublesome part of his game as third base is such an important defensive position, but his problems are very fixable.
The most complete part of Andujar’s game thus far is his bat. Although he only grades as slightly above average, his bat has translated to every level of the minors. Last year, he played 125 games between AA-Trenton and AAA-Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and hit to a .315 AVG with 16 HR and 82 RBI. Andujar also filled in at 3rd for the major league team for 5 games and went 4-7 with 4 RBI’s.
His swing is an absolute thing of beauty, staying short and compact and staying through the zone helps Andujar make contact with mostly everything inside and out of the plate. His short stride to start his swing helps him to avoid getting out in front of off-speed pitches, which helps so much with how well pitchers disguise pitches at the major league level.
Miguel Andujar will have a very solid chance to be the Yankees third baseman on Opening Day, and will need to prove his skillset throughout his time in Tampa. It seems like the future may be now for the Yankees top third base prospect.