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Clint Frazier

New York Yankees outfielder Brett Gardner against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. (Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Yankees outfielder Brett Gardner against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. (Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports)

Chris Carelli, SNY.tv

Leadoff hitters are typically a key to a team's success. In the Yankees' case, they've jumped out to an 11-7 record despite left fielder Brett Gardner's incredibly poor start at the plate. Is it too early to look at the future without the Yankees' home grown outfielder and is it too late to receive a good return in a trade?

Gardner is hitting .182 with a .318 on-base percentage, .236 slugging percentage and a 68 wRC+ (runs created per plate appearance where 100 is average) in 66 plate appearances on the young season. However, Gardner's troubles go all the way back to the second half of the 2015 season. 

The moment Gardner returned from his first All-Star game, he began to backpedal offensively. Gardner has stood at the plate 993 times since July 17, 2015. During the span, Gardner sports a .240 batting average, .334 on-base percentage, .333 slugging percentage and an 86 wRC+. Gardner, once prolific on the bases, has swiped a mere 26 bases (caught six times) in the stretch, though he has five this season. Gardner has managed just three months (out of nine, including this month) with a wRC+ above 100 since August 2015. These are not small samples.

Tags: Aaron Hicks, Brett Gardner, Clint Frazier, Dustin Fowler, Jacoby Ellsbury, Mason Williams, Chris Carelli
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Mar 10, 2017; Clearwater, FL, USA; New York Yankees left fielder Clint Frazier (75) smiles while on deck to bat against the Philadelphia Phillies at Spectrum Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)
Mar 10, 2017; Clearwater, FL, USA; New York Yankees left fielder Clint Frazier (75) smiles while on deck to bat against the Philadelphia Phillies at Spectrum Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)

After reports to the contrary, Yankees prospect Clint Frazier tweeted Wednesday that he does not want to take Mickey Mantle's number.

On Wednesday, radio analyst Suzyn Waldman told WFAN that Frazier told GM Brian Cashman if the club ever unretires numbers that he would want to wear Mantle's No. 7

Tags: Clint Frazier
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New York Yankees GM Brian Cashman (Andy Marlin/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Yankees GM Brian Cashman (Andy Marlin/USA Today Sports Images)

Following a season in which the New York Yankees finished fourth in the division and traded away several big-name players for top prospects, GM Brian Cashman said he felt both proud and hopeful the team's youth movement will pan out.

"It's my job as general manager of the Yankees to be utilizing every tool in the tool box so we can be the best we can possibly be," Cashman told USA TODAY's Bob Nightengale. "I'm proud of the fact that we're not afraid to be open-minded at all times. I'm proud that the ownership has given me that freedom to do that, while also recognizing that, hey, we're the New York Yankees."

While the Yankees missed the postseason for the third time in four years and have yet to reach the World Series since 2009, Cashman hopes the moves New York made over the past nine months, which included trading Andrew MillerAroldis ChapmanBrian McCann and Carlos Beltran in an effort to shed payroll and acquire top-level prospects.

Tags: Aaron Judge, Andrew Miller, Aroldis Chapman, Brian McCann, Carlos Beltran, Clint Frazier, Gary Sanchez, Greg Bird
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New York Yankees pitcher Luis Cessa (85) throws a pitch in the first inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays during spring training at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium. (Butch Dill)
New York Yankees pitcher Luis Cessa (85) throws a pitch in the first inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays during spring training at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium. (Butch Dill)

The Yankees have optioned Luis Cessa, who was in the running for one of the final spots in the rotation, to Triple-A Scranton, the team announced Friday morning.

In addition, New York has re-assigned INF Ji-Man Choi, OF Dustin Fowler, OF Clint Frazier, LHP Jason Gurka, and OF Billy McKinney to minor league camp.

Cessa appeared in five games this spring for the Yankees, allowing eight runs (seven earned) on 13 hits in 9.2 innings with four walks and seven strikeouts.

Tags: Clint Frazier, Dustin Fowler, Luis Cessa
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New York Yankees center fielder Clint Frazier singles during the second inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Spectrum Field. (Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Yankees center fielder Clint Frazier singles during the second inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Spectrum Field. (Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)

MLB.com ranked the New York Yankees' farm system No. 2 in baseball on Friday.

Writers Jim Callis, Jonathan Mayo and Mike Rosenbaum graded the Yankees, who have seven prospects in MLB.com's top 100, just beneath the Atlanta Braves.

Gleyber Torres was ranked MLB.com's No. 3 prospect in baseball, while Clint FrazierBlake RutherfordAaron JudgeJorge MateoJames Kaprielian and Justus Sheffield all ranked in the top 79.

On MLB.com's point scale that gives the No. 1 prospect 100 points, No. 2 prospect 99 points, and so on, the Yankees led all 30 MLB teams with 414 points, followed by the Chicago White Sox's 379 points and the Braves' 363.

Tags: Aaron Judge, Clint Frazier, James Kaprielian, Jorge Mateo
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Clint Frazier on his 2017 goals 00:00:31
Yankees prospect Clint Frazier talks about his goals for the 2017 season, including breaking into the big leagues.

New York Yankees outfielder Clint Frazier said he will try to put less pressure on himself in 2017 after he tried to live up to higher standards following the trade that sent LHP Andrew Miller to the Cleveland Indians.

"I went from trying to fill Clint Frazier's shoes to trying to fill Andrew Miller shoes," Frazier said, according to the New York Daily News' Mike Mazzeo.

Frazier, 22, was the center piece the Yankees received in the deal, as he was rated the No. 27 prospect by MLB.com, No. 44 prospect by Baseball America and No. 53 prospect by Baseball Prospectus entering 2016. Before being traded to New York, he hit .276 with 13 home runs and 48 RBIs in 89 RBIs with Double-A Akron.

Tags: Andrew Miller, Cleveland Indians, Clint Frazier
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New York Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge leaps but can't catch a two-run home run by Toronto Blue Jays shortstop Troy Tulowitzki during the sixth inning at Yankee Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge leaps but can't catch a two-run home run by Toronto Blue Jays shortstop Troy Tulowitzki during the sixth inning at Yankee Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)

New York Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner said he expects Aaron Judge to be the team's starting right fielder to open the 2017 season.

"He's got some work to do; he knows that," Steinbrenner told YES Network, according to the New York Daily News' Mark Feinsand. "We're going to figure out exactly what we think is wrong. My expectations are he's going to be my starting right fielder this year. That's a big deal and a big opportunity. I know he's going to make the most of it."

Judge, a top outfield prospect, made his MLB debut last season in early August, but struggled to a .179/.263/.345 batting line with four home runs, 10 RBIs and 42 strikeouts in 27 games. He will still retain rookie status because he only had 95 plate appearances.

With Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, Judge hit .270 with 19 home runs and 65 RBIs in 93 games. Prior to 2016, Judge was ranked Baseball Prospectus' No. 18 prospect, MLB.com's No. 31 prospect and Baseball America's No. 76 prospect.

Tags: Aaron Hicks, Aaron Judge, Brett Gardner, Clint Frazier, Gary Sanchez, Jacoby Ellsbury, Tyler Austin, Yoenis Cespedes
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East infielder Gleyber Torres of the New York Yankees during the Arizona Fall League Fall Stars game at Surprise Stadium. (Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports)
East infielder Gleyber Torres of the New York Yankees during the Arizona Fall League Fall Stars game at Surprise Stadium. (Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports)

In its latest rankings, Baseball Prospectus has ranked SS Gleyber Torres as the Yankees' top prospect heading into 2017.

Torres hit a combined .270 with 11 HRs, 66 RBIs, and 21 stolen bases in 125 games between New York and Chicago's Advanced-A affiliates.

The Yankees acquired Torres from the Cubs in July as part of the trade that sent Aroldis Chapman to Chicago.

Here is BP's full list of New York's top 10 prospects:

  1. SS Gleyber Torres
  2. OF Clint Frazier
  3. 2B/SS Jorge Mateo
  4. OF Blake Rutherford
  5. LHP Justus Sheffield
  6. RHP James Kaprielian
  7. RF Aaron Judge
  8. RHP Albert Abreu
  9. IF/OF Tyler Wade
  10. RHP Chance Adams
Tags: Aaron Judge, Clint Frazier, James Kaprielian, Jorge Mateo
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New York Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez (24) bats against the Baltimore Orioles at Yankee Stadium. (Danny Wild)
New York Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez (24) bats against the Baltimore Orioles at Yankee Stadium. (Danny Wild)

Chris Carelli, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | About Me | Archives

Last offseason, the New York Yankees professed to have a quartet of players that were off the table in trade talks. The Yankees engaged in a significant sell-off during the summer, further filling the farm system with some of the game's more highly touted players, making one believe the number of untouchable players might grow. Should that be the case?

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman says that the answer is no, recently suggesting that catcher Gary Sanchez might be the only player deemed "difficult" to trade. Let's look at a handful of players who might be deemed worthy of various levels of an "untouchable" tag and discuss their merits.

Tags: Aaron Judge, Clint Frazier, Gary Sanchez, Jorge Mateo, Chris Carelli
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