Yankees promote 2 prospects as youth movement begins

oswald peraza, yankees
Mar 9, 2023; Tampa, Florida, USA; New York Yankees shortstop Oswald Peraza (91) doubles against the Boston Red Sox during the fourth inning at George M. Steinbrenner Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

In the lead-up to Tuesday’s anticipated series opener against the Washington Nationals, the New York Yankees have made waves by promoting two standout prospects: Everson Pereira and Oswald Peraza.

Everson Pereira: The Yankees’ Outfield Prospect

22-year-old Pereira, touted as one of the team’s top outfield prospects, has been on the Yankees’ radar for a potential call-up in recent weeks.

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The stats speak for themselves. With Triple-A Scranton, Pereira boasts a batting average of .312, an OBP of .386, eight home runs, and 33 RBIs across 35 games. And let’s not forget his outstanding 130 wRC+. Prior to this, during his stint at Double-A, he played 46 games, delivering a .291 batting average and a .362 OBP.

Yet, it’s not just about numbers. Pereira has turned heads with his unique blend of power and precision. Yes, his 27.8% strikeout rate might raise eyebrows, but the Yankees have historically been willing to overlook strikeouts in favor of slugging prowess, evident from Pereira’s impressive .551 slugging percentage.

Moreover, his walk rate has ascended to a solid 8.2%, and recent games have showcased his formidable talent. Just in his last two games, the young star accumulated six runs, three walks, and two RBIs.

From a strategic lens, Pereira’s defensive chops can’t be ignored. He’s versatile in the outfield, with a potential future as a centerfielder. The Yankees, contemplating their strategy with Harrison Bader and upcoming free agency, might see Pereira as a cornerstone of their 2024 outfield reshuffle.

Oswald Peraza: The Versatile Infielder

Peraza isn’t a fresh face in the big leagues, having already graced the field in 37 MLB games. Over this span, he’s achieved a batting average of .238, an OBP of .364, and a wRC+ of 102, alongside a home run and eight RBIs. His discipline at the plate is evident, with a 20.7% strikeout rate and a commendable 11.6% walk rate.

Reflecting on his Triple-A performance this year, Peraza has hit .268, coupled with a .357 OBP, 14 homers, 36 RBIs, and 16 stolen bases across 63 matches. His wRC+ stands at 107, highlighting his above-average contribution.

While his MLB transitions have been somewhat inconsistent, oscillating between call-ups and send-downs, Peraza’s defensive prowess has consistently shone through. Exhibiting Gold Glove potential, he’s adept at playing third base, shortstop, and second base. Notably, during his 72.1 innings at the ‘hot corner’ in the MLB, he’s maintained a perfect fielding record, supplemented by one out above average.

Amidst the Yankees’ current challenges, with their playoff odds dipping under 1%, a strategic shift is evident. Their latest move underscores a renewed focus on young prospects, signaling a forward-looking vision for the team’s future.