Yankees MiLB Mailbag: Sensley, what to expect from Estrada, the next Mike Ford, and more.

    Thanks to everyone that sent in questions for the mailbag posts.  I ended up splitting the questions into two posts as my answers began to get rather long.  With that in mind, if you haven’t yet check out the first part of the mailbag that was posted yesterday.  Today we complete the mailbag questions we received.

    @jbj5613 on Twitter asks: “Oppenheimer said Sensley was kinda like his mega sleeper. Looked great early on and then kinda meh.”

    Steven Sensley is an older prospect that came into the system with some buzz because of the raw power he has shown. He is 24 years old and has yet to make it pass Class-A Advanced.  He is in a similar boat to fellow Yankee Chris Gittens, an older player for his level who is blocked at the next level.  Ford blocks Gittens, and Gittens blocks Sensley.

    It is likely at some point in 2020 that Sensley will get his first chance at Double-A but he would have to show some mastery of High-A first.  Sensley has 153 games with the Tampa Tarpons and has hit just .206/.288/.359 with 18 doubles, 20 home runs, and 54 RBIs.  That is equal to over half of his career minor league at-bats.

    While the raw power is still there, the question remains if he can shore up his hit tool enough to take advantage of it.

    @NYFanInCT on Twitter asks: “What are your expectations for Estrada this season?  AAA all year?  Traded?  I assume Wade has the edge on backup IF spot as long as he is on the team.”

    First, let me preface this by saying I am a huge Thairo Estrada fan. I have been on since I first saw him as an 18-year-old in Staten Island back in 2014. I expect to see Estrada start the season in Triple-A with the RailRiders. I do not think he would stay there all year, as we have seen the last few years injuries do happen and guys like Estrada will get chances in the big leagues as fill-ins.

    I do agree that as of now, Wade has an edge to be the 26th man on the roster. It is a spot that is perfect for a guy like Wade. With that said, Estrada will be the backups’ backup and be an everyday player in Triple-A before he is needed in the bigs.  I do think if not before the season at some point in 2020 one of Estrada or Wade will be traded.  I think at this point, Estrada has more potential than Wade especially being two years younger.

    @Matthewkrain on Twitter asks, “Top candidate for the next Mike Ford (guy who seems destined to be buried in minors but could be huge help if given a shot)?”

    This one is easy for me. Kyle Holder. Holder does not get much love from the prospect community and fans have seemingly never really liked him for some reason. For a first-round pick, Holder is an underrated prospect.  He is easily one of the best defensive players in the system and in the minors as a whole.  The one knock against him has been his bat which has made great strides over the past few seasons.

    If you look at Holder’s season numbers in 2019, he hit .265/.336/.405 with 25 doubles, three triples, nine home runs, and 40 RBIs.  He had a .295 BABIP and a wRC+ of 119.  On the surface that is very respectable, but when you drill down you see he had a great season after a very bad first month. In April, he hit just.  That includes an incredible June when he hit .337/.385/.566 in 23 games with a .362 BABIP and a wRC+ of 176 over 83 at-bats.

    @jimdemotses on Twitter asks: “Do you see Florial starting the year at Trenton and being able to stick there all season?”

    Honestly, if I were the Yankees, I would push him to Trenton.  Florial is now on the 40-man roster so the clock is ticking, and he now has 170 games under his belt in Class-A Advanced Tampa.  Overall, he hit .252/.330/.379 in 652 at-bats in the Florida State League, most of those at-bats came as he worked to overcome injuries in 2018 and 2019.  Even with his struggles, he owns a .365 BABIP and a wRC+ of 120 with the Yankees’ High-A team.

    If Florial does start off in Double-A in 2020 it would not be his first appearance in a Thunder uniform.  Florial played in two games in the 2017 Eastern League postseason for Trenton and had a double in four at-bats during those games.

    @NYFanInCt on Twitter asks “Besides Dominguez, who ate up almost their entire 2019 IFA budget, who else did they sign?   I heard that by signing Cole it affects their next June’s IFA budget, is that true?”

    So aside from Jasson Dominguez, the Yankees have 33 other 2019 international free agents under contract, 32 of them they signed initially and one they acquired in a trade. I am including a full list of all the 2019 IFA signees below so you can see who they signed and some basic info on them.  Aside from some info that Baseball America put out in their Yankees IFA Review, there really is not much out there on many of these guys.  They highlight Dominguez as well as Enger Castellano, who signed for over $377,000, as well as catcher Manuel Placencia. They compared Castellano to Andujar and talked well about Placencia’s bat.

    Ernesto Borges is a right-hander they signed out of Mexico, throws 85 miles per hour.  Cuban-born Lester Beltran might be an interesting find, the left-handed pitcher has a 90-miles per hour fastball as well as a curveball, a changeup, and a sinker.

    Oscar Silverio

    Catcher Oscar Silverio looks interesting, I had the chance to watch some video and noticed some quick hands behind the dish.  He is kind of slow out of the box but doesn’t move bad for a catcher. That is about all I can find on these guys.

    NamePositionAgeSigning DateBirthdateBatsThrowsHeightWeightCountryBonus
    Carlos HerreraCatcher162019-07-022002-09-01RR5'10"165Venezuela
    Jesus BravoCatcher172019-07-022001-09-16RR5'10"170Colombia
    Jared Serna2B172019-07-022002-06-01RR5'8"168Mexico
    Jeison Anillo2B172019-07-022002-02-16LR5'11"168Colombia
    Lester BeltranLHP192019-07-022000-01-28LL6'0"190Cuba
    Donys GarciaRHP182019-07-022001-02-18RR6'2"175Venezuela
    Gerardo AbregoRHP182019-07-022001-04-16RR6'3"190Panama
    Riordan OropezaRHP172019-07-022002-01-12RR6'3"181Venezuela
    Yordi PichardoRHP162019-07-022002-07-12RR6'3"180Dominican Republic
    Angel SanchezRHP182019-07-022001-06-25RR6'2"185Venezuela
    Geralmi SantanaRHP182019-07-022000-12-07RR6'3"173Dominican Republic
    Luis UrbanoLHP162019-07-022002-10-01LL6'2"163Venezuela
    Jasson DominguezOutfielder162019-07-022003-02-07SR5'10"190Dominican Republic$5.1 mil
    Cesar SanchezOutfielder162019-08-082003-04-05LL5'10"150Venezuela
    Ruben CastilloRHP182019-08-082001-06-18RR6'1"160Venezuela
    Oscar SilverioCatcher172019-08-152001-10-25LR5'9"170Dominican Republic
    Manuel PalenciaCatcher162019-08-312002-09-05RR6'0"175Venezuela
    Darwin CastilloSS162019-08-312003-02-26RR5'10"153Venezuela
    Jose GuzmanRHP172019-08-312001-12-26RR5'11"185Venezuela
    Franklin CornielRHP172019-09-022001-10-08RR6'2"165Dominican Republic
    Sebastian PerroneRHP192019-09-022000-04-08RR5'11"180Venezuela
    Jose HerediaCatcher182019-09-032000-12-04RR5'9"182Venezuela
    Enger Castelliano3B162019-09-042002-12-02RR6'0"190Dominican Republic377500
    Daniel SalasRHP162019-09-122003-02-16RR6'3"189Venezuela
    Amauris De Los Santos2B162019-09-262002-10-04RR5'9"174Dominican Republic
    Brenny EscanioSS162019-07-022002-12-16SR5'9"145Dominican Republic
    Felixander SeverinoOutfielder192019-07-022000-06-28SR6'3"165Dominican Republic
    Ricardo AlfaroRHP172019-08-252001-11-27RR6'5"175Panama
    Ernesto BorgesRHP182019-08-242001-05-17RR6'2"188Mexico
    Juan EspanaRHP172019-08-152002-02-19RR5'9"145Colombia
    Pedro RodriguezLHP162019-07-232002-08-11LL5'10"145Venezuela
    Jose BernabeRHP172019-07-022002-01-15Dominican Republic
    Miguel PozoLHP172019-07-022001-09-09LL5'11"155Dominican Republic
    Carlos RosarioRHP192019-08-082000-06-26RR6'2"170Dominican Republic

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