The Staten Island Yankees will open up their 2017 season on Monday, June 19 against the Brooklyn Cyclones at the Richmond County Bank Ballpark. The team will be led by Julio Mosquera and features a coaching staff that includes former Baby Bomber Kevin Mahoney as hitting coach. They are joined by Travis Phelps who is returning for his second season while defensive coach Teuris Olivares will come back for his third season.
All four of the Staten Island coaching staff are returning to Staten Island after spending time there in the past and will be joined by a roster of players with a lot of experience playing in St. George. The 2017 Staten Island Yankees feature 15 players who will be returning to Staten Island and several top prospects.
Daniel Alvarez – RHP
Originally signed by the Yankees as an international free agent on March 14, 2014, the 20-year old pitcher went 6-1 with a 1.60 ERA over 12 games, 10 starts between the Gulf Coast League Yankees and Pulaski Yankees. He owns a career 13-4 record over 41 games with a 2.48 ERA and 143 strikeouts in 152 1/3 innings. Alvarez will turn 21 on June 28 when the Staten Island Yankees face the Vermont Expos in Vermont.
Alex Bisacca – RHP
Bisacca, 23, will be making his second trip to Staten Island after pitching for the Baby Bombers in 2015. He was originally a 35th round draft pick in 2015 and allowed just one run over 5 1/3 innings in his first tour with Staten Island. Overall, he owns a career 3-3 record with a 3.64 ERA and 41 strikeouts in 54 1/3 innings of work.
Braden Bristo – RHP
Bristo, 22, was a 23rd round draft pick by the Yankees in 2016 and made his professional debut last season with the Pulaski Yankees. He went 0-2 with a 6.00 ERA, and 17 strikeouts over 15 innings pitched. In college, he appeared in 51 games over three seasons for Louisiana Tech. He started 25 games and struck out 115 batters over 143 innings.
Jhonny Brito – RHP
Jhonny Brito, 19, was signed by the Yankees as an international free agent in 2015 out of the Franklin Ferreras Baseball Academy in the Dominican Republic. He made his professional debut in 2016 with the Dominican Summer League Yankees where he went 0-3 with a 6.81 ERA over nine starts and struck out 34 batters over 35 2/3 innings. He then pitched for the Gulf Coast League Yankees where he went 1-3 over four starts, striking out 14 over 55 innings.
Luis Cedeno – RHP
Luis Cedeno, 22, will be returning to the Staten Island Yankees after an all-star performance in 2015 when he went 5-3 with a 2.73 ERA over 66 innings. Last season he spent the entire year with the Charleston RiverDogs where he was 9-9 with a 3.68 ERA over 107 2/3 innings. He made one start for the Tampa Yankees in the playoffs, allowing three runs over five innings. Over his career, he owns a 24-21 record with a 2.77 ERA over 70 games, 47 starts.
Juan De Paula – RHP
De Paula, 19, came to the Yankees that saw former Baby Bomber Ben Gamel to the Seattle Mariners. In two seasons with the Mariners organization, he was 6-6 with a 2.58 ERA and 121 strikeouts over 118 2/3 innings in 25 games, 21 starts. He owns a fastball that sits in the 92-95 MPH range and an above-average curveball along with a developing changeup.
Jeff Degano – LHP
Left-handed pitcher Jeff Degano, 24, returns to the Staten Island Yankees after spending last season with the Pulaski Yankees. The former second round pick owns a 0-4 professional record with an 8.67 ERA in 17 games, 10 starts, over 27 innings. In 2015, he had a 2.53 ERA over four games for the Baby Bombers, striking out 14 batters in 10 2/3 innings.
Drew Finley – RHP
Drew Finley, 20, returns to the Staten Island Yankees after going 0-3 with a 4.28 ERA over six starts in 2016. He was the Yankees opening day starter, pitching six no-hit innings before Josh Roeder finished the game to complete the second no-hitter in team history. Finley’s 2016 season was cut short due to injury after exiting the game on July 19. He sat out the remainder of the season with a strain in the flexor tendon in his throwing arm.
Jorge Guzman – RHP
Guzman, 21, was acquired by the Yankees as part of the Brian McCann trade this past offseason. He is a hard thrower, regularly in the high-90s with his fastball, touching 101-103 several times last year. He compliments his powerful fastball with a slider and a developing changeup. In 2016 Guzman split his time between the Gulf Coast League and the Appalachian League. Between the two rookie-level affiliates he had a 3-4 record with a 4.05 ERA and 54 strikeouts in 40 innings of work. He never threw more than five innings in a game.
Chase Hodson – RHP
Hodson, 24, was signed by the Yankees as a non-drafted free agent in 2016. He made his professional debut in the Gulf Coast League where he was 2-0 with a 0.89 ERA in 12 games. He has also pitched for the Charleston RiverDogs and the Tampa Yankees. Overall he owns a 2-0 record with a 0.67 ERA and 37 strikeouts in 27 innings of work.
Will Jones – RHP
Jones, 24, was a 28th round draft pick by the Yankees in 2016. He made his professional debut last season with the Pulaski Yankees where he was 2-3 with a 7.20 ERA and 18 strikeouts in 20 innings over 15 games.
David Palladino – RHP
Palladino, 24, is the longest-tenured Staten Island Yankees pitcher in history, appearing in 47 games over three seasons (2013-14, 2016). He will be appearing in his fourth season with the Baby Bombers, making him the first pitcher to appear in four seasons and the third player in team history to accomplish that feat (joining Hector Zamora and Isaias Tejeda). He owns a 19-19 record over 77 minor league games, 41 starts, and struck out 264 batters in 277 1/3 innings.
Eduardo Rivera – RHP
Rivera, 24, will be appearing in his second season with the Staten Island Yankees. After starting the season as the Baby Bombers closer, he was quickly promoted to the Charleston RiverDogs and then the Tampa Yankees. Overall, he had three saves in three opportunities and a 1.34 ERA over 18 games and struck out 47 in 33 2/3 innings. This will be his seventh season in the organization and will be a minor league free agent at the end of the season.
Brian Trieglaff – RHP
Trieglaff, 23, was a 13th round draft pick last season and made his professional debut with Staten Island. He went 0-1 with a 4.40 ERA over 14 games with 10 strikeouts over 14 1/3 innings of work.
Alexander Vargas – RHP
Vargas, 19, was signed by the Yankees as a free agent in 2014. He made his professional debut that season with the DSL Yankees where he struck out 13 batters over 13 innings in five starts. In 2015 Vargas was 2-4 with a 4.97 ERA in 10 games, nine starts, and struck out 31 batters over 41 2/3 innings. Last season he did not pitch due to injury.
Greg Weissert – RHP
Weissert, 22, was the Yankees 18th round draft pick last year. He made his professional debut with the Pulaski Yankees where he struck out nine batters over 6 1/3 innings. He was promoted to the Charleston RiverDogs where he was 0-1 with a 4.26 ERA over 12 games, striking out 16 in 12 2/3 innings.
Audie Afenir – Catcher
Afenir, 25, was the Yankees 25th round draft pick by the Yankees in 2015. He has appeared in 126 professional games across three levels of the minors. In 2015 he made his debut with the Pulaski Yankees where he hit .279/.347/.361 over 244 at bats. Last season he hit .242/.278/.325 in 63 games for the Charleston RiverDogs. Earlier this season he appeared in three games for the Tampa Yankees where he had one hit over eight at-bats.
Manny Argomaniz – Catcher
Argomaniz, 24, was signed as a non-drafted free agent by the Yankees out of Fresno State in 2015. Last season he appeared in 27 games between the Staten Island Yankees and Pulaski Yankees. In his career, he has hit .130/.255/.163 over 51 games with just five RBIs.
Keith Skinner – Catcher
Skinner, 23, was the Yankees seventh round draft pick in 2016 and appeared in eight games for the Staten Island Yankees that season. He hit .222/.250/.222 over 27 at-bats before being placed on the Restricted List for the remainder of the season.
Daniel Barrios – 2B/3B
Barrios, 22, was signed by the Yankees as an international free agent in 2012. In five minor league seasons, he hit .224/.345/.313 over 180 games, 517 at-bats. His best season was in 2015 when he hit .288/.347/.394 between the DSL Yankees and the GCL Yankees.
Wilkerman Garcia – SS
Garcia, 19, was a part of that big 2014 International Free Agent class, last season. Considered by many to be a steal with his raw talent, he was impressive in his first season in 2015 when he hit .299/.414/.362 over 39 games between the Dominican Summer League and the Gulf Coast League. Last season he battled an injury all season that saw him hit just .198/.255/.384 over 54 games in the Appalachian League with the Pulaski Yankees. He was ranked by Pinstriped Prospects as the #10 prospect in the Yankees system, #29 by Baseball America, and #16 by MLBPipeline.com.
Nelson Gomez – 3B
Gomez, 19, was also part of the Yankees 2014 International Free Agent class. At the time he was ranked as the second best prospect in the class by MLBPipeline.com and the sixth best prospect by Baseball America. The Yankees signed him for $2.25 Million. In his first professional season, he hit .243/.350/.435 ERA over 58 games for the DSL Yankees, smashing 11 home runs and driving in 55 runs in the process. Last season he hit just .194/.249/.403 over 54 games for the GCL Yankees hitting nine home runs and driving in 37 runs. In his minor league career, he hit 20 doubles, two triples, and 20 home runs. He was walked 42 times and struck out 121 times over 421 at bats.
Ryan Krill – 1B
Krill, 24, will be making his second trip to Staten Island after making his professional debut with the Baby Bombers in 2015. That season he hit .247/.317/.302 in 62 games. He sat out most of the 2016 season due to injury but came back later in the season to hit .379/.471/.621 in 18 games for the GCL Yankees.
Danienger Perez – 2B/SS
Perez, 20, will be returning to Staten Island for his third season with the team. He was signed as an international free agent in 2014 and made his professional debut in 2015 with the DSL Yankees. After 17 games in the DSL, he was sent to the GCL before finally being promoted to Staten Island to send the season. He hit .246/.312/.383 between the three levels. Perez started the 2016 season with the Staten Island Yankees but was sent down to the GCL after just 19 games. Between the two teams, he hit .213/.248/.283.
Oswaldo Cabrera – 3B/2B/SS
Cabrera, 18, was signed by the Yankees as an international free agent in 2015 and made his professional debut last season. After hitting .441/.487/.647 in 19 games in the DSL he was promoted to the Gulf Coast League. With the GCL Yankees he hit .455/.471/.818 over seven games before being promoted again to the Appalachian League. Cabrera hit just .240/.305/.333 over 26 games for the Pulaski Yankees but ended the season with a combined .345/.396/.523 hitting line. He started the 2017 season with the Charleston RiverDogs where he hit .208/.267/.280 over 49 games. With Charleston, he worked on his versatility, playing second base, third base and shortstop.
Carlos Vidal – OF
Vidal, 21, returns to Staten Island after playing 13 games with the Baby Bombers in 2016. The Colombia-native has been with the Yankees since he signed as an international free agent in 2014. In four seasons, he owns a career .307/.400/.431 batting average. He started this season with the Charleston RiverDogs where he hit .277/.325/.305 in 36 games before being placed on the disabled list on May 30.
Kendall Coleman – OF
Coleman, 21, has been with the Yankees since being drafted in 2013 in the 11th round. He hit .236 for the Pulaski Yankees with two doubles, seven triples and five home runs in 2015. Coleman began the 2016 season with the Charleston RiverDogs but was sent down to Staten Island in June. Between both teams, he hit .197/.305/.252 in 92 games. Coleman missed all of minor league spring training with an injury.
Cesar Diaz – OF
Diaz, 24, is a switch-hitter out of the Dominican Republic. He was signed as an international free agent in 2013 and has reached as high as the Tampa Yankees. Over 164 career games, he hit .282/.387/.397 with six home runs, nine triples, and 28 doubles. Earlier this season he appeared in five games for the Tampa Yankees but did not register a hit over 13 at-bats.
Leonardo Molina – OF
Molina, 19, has some of the best raw tools but has yet to be able to put it together in a game. He was considered the fifth-best prospect in the 2013 International Free Agent Class and in 209 career minor league games over four seasons he has hit .217/.274/.330 with 36 doubles, six triples and 12 home runs in 742 at-bats. He hit just .186/.202/.244 in 23 games for the Charleston RiverDogs to start this season before being sent to Extended Spring Training.
Timmy Robinson – OF
Robinson, 22, will be returning to the Staten Island Yankees after he was top-five in the league in 2016 in several categories including slugging percentage home runs (tied-fifth), doubles (tied-third), (third), total bases (tied-second), and RBIs (tied-first). Overall, he hit .265/.343/.483 over 63 games. He was the Yankees 21st round draft pick last season.
Dom Thompson-Williams – OF
Thompson-Williams, 22, was the Yankees fifth round draft pick in 2016 and hit .246/.348/.344 in his professional debut with the Staten Island Yankees. He had eight doubles, a triple and three home runs for the Yankees, serving as the team’s primary lead-off hitter throughout the season.