Untimely injuries have been the bane of the New York Yankees‘ existence over the past two seasons. In 2019, the Bombers set an MLB record with 39 players hitting the injured list, losing stars Giancarlo Stanton, Luis Severino, Aaron Judge, Dellin Betances, and more, for differing amounts of time. However, Stanton, Severino, and Betances, all missed the entire regular season virtually.
Firing strength and conditioning coach Matt Kraus and hiring Eric Cressey was the first of several moves in an attempt to rejuvenate the Yankees’ health program. While the major leaguers went through a plague of sorts, some of their minor-league prospects also succumbed to the bug.
Five-tool player, Estevan Florial, fell ill to a broken wrist early on in spring training, derailing a promising start to his season. The Yankees aren’t shying away from throwing him back into the fire, despite the unfortunate injuries he has suffered the past two years.
Last week in Miami, the MLB presented its annual Rookie Career Development Program, which helps younger players face off against the top talents in the minor-league systems. The idea behind this is to expose them to MLB-quality players and prepare them for the next level.
The New York Yankees sent their top talents:
The Yankees send Deivi Garcia, Miguel Yajure, Nick Nelson, and Florial to the event. The young outfielder has all of the physical attributes to play at the major league level, but he lacks the consistency required to prove his worth. An active spring training this time around would give him the edge he needs to receive his first MLB assignment.
The lefty batter had a strong 2019 spring training, as mentioned before, posting a .355 batting average, hitting an impressive opposite-field homer, and showcased his baserunning abilities. The injury to his hand might have cost him a chance at the top team, considering the number of injuries that forced the Yankees to dip into reserve options.
However, once he returned to action, Florial posted a slash of .237/.297/.383 in 74 games for High-A Tampa. The key here is consistency and health.