Yankees former first-round prospect making waves in minors

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

Despite the New York Yankees‘ hesitation to promote young talent to the major leagues, the notable performance of some budding players in their minor-league system is demanding attention. Among these talents, Spencer Jones is proving to be an emerging powerhouse with A+ Hudson Valley.

A Rise in Performance: The Journey of Spencer Jones

Jones, a former first-round selection, has seen a significant upswing in his performance following a slow start to the 2023 campaign. In his 72 games with Hudson Valley, he’s posted a .267 average, .341 OBP, .476 slugging rate, with 11 homers, 42 RBIs, 21 stolen bases, and a 121 wRC+.

However, his 30.8% strikeout rate has generated some concerns, although it has been on a downward trend in recent weeks. On the positive side, Jones boasts a 9.8% walk rate.

Jones’s Performance in the Yankees’ Minor League System

While Jones posted a .245 average with a .336 OBP, three homers, and eight RBIs in June, he opened July with a bang. In the first nine games, he hit .333 with a .487 OBP, .467 slugging rate, and .954 OPS, accompanied by one homer and six RBIs.

Jones’s performance in Hudson Valley justifies consideration for a promotion to AA Somerset. Such a development would be significant, given that he was a first-round pick just last year and has made swift progress through the system.

During his time with Low-A Tampa, the 22-year-old lefty exhibited remarkable form, hitting .325 with a .411 OBP and 160 wRC+. His ability to adjust after a few weeks and exhibit lethal hitting power aligns well with the demands of Yankee Stadium.

Looking Ahead: Jones’s Role with the Yankees

General Manager Brian Cashman might consider leveraging Jones’s growing value in a potential trade. However, Jones seems to have a promising long-term future with the Yankees as a power-hitting outfielder. Despite needing to work on his plate discipline and reduce his strikeout rate, there are clear signs of growth this month.

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