Yankees’ former 1st round pick has ‘the potential to be a star’

spencer jones, yankees
Hudson Valley Renegades outfielder Spencer Jones during media day on April 5, 2023. Renegades Media Day

In the wake of the New York Yankees drafting standout Vanderbilt outfielder Spencer Jones in 2022, comparisons to Aaron Judge, albeit from the left side of the batter’s box, quickly emerged. Currently making strides with Hudson Valley in A+, Jones, at 22, is rapidly advancing through the Yankees farm system.

Jones’ Promising Start in the Yankees’ Minor League System

During his rookie campaign in the minors, Jones made quite a splash in the Florida Complex League before swiftly moving on to Low-A Tampa. In Tampa, he boasted a .325 average with a .411 OBP, three home runs, and eight RBIs across 22 games.

This season, he has featured in 78 games with Hudson Valley, hitting .275 with a .345 OBP. His record includes 12 home runs, 47 RBIs, 23 stolen bases, a 9.2% walk rate, and a 123 wRC+. The main concern remains his strikeout rate, which has escalated to 30%.

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Jones’ Rise to Domination with Hudson Valley

Jones is gradually coming into his own with Hudson Valley. Over his last 58 at-bats in 15 games, he’s hit .345 with a .441 OBP, including two home runs, 11 RBIs, and just 14 strikeouts. There’s a clear indication that he’s gearing up for the leap to Somerset and could ascend to the next level sooner rather than later.

A scout even perceives Jones as a potential future All-Star, capable of hitting 30+ home runs per season in Yankee Stadium.

Bill Pintard, a Yankee scout, told NJ Advance Media, “I expect Spencer Jones to be an everyday Yankee for 10 years and have some All-Star appearances, hitting 30 home runs a season. He’s an intelligent guy with movie star looks. He’s already got the Yankee demeanor. He has the potential to be a star.”

Jones’ Potential for Major League Success

While there’s little doubt that Jones possesses the skills needed to succeed in the MLB, he needs more time to refine his plate discipline and swing decisions. His earlier heightened strikeout rate was a cause for concern, but he’s managed to halve his strikeouts this month, making quality contact and registering a .958 OPS.

Jones shared his ambitions, stating, “The goal isn’t to be a great minor league player, it’s to be a great major league player. I want to be remembered as my own player. I don’t want to be in somebody else’s shadow.”

If Jones transitions to Somerset in the coming weeks, he should swiftly find his way to AAA with Scranton, positioning him just one step away from the majors. While he likely requires another full year to find his footing, by age 24, he could be considered a regular outfielder for the Yankees.