2004 Staten Island Position Prospect Review
Justin Christian: What a Find!
Justin Christian: What a Find!

Posted Oct 4, 2004


The 2004 Staten Island Yankees went 28-44, mostly on the strength of their starting pitching. Staten Island did however have some decent hitting performances. We will look at the peripheral stats of these batters to get a look at the promise behind the numbers. We will look at the guys who accumulated a minimum of 120 at-bats for Staten Island and did not accrue more than 200 at-bats at a higher level. (Free Preview of Premium Content)

Tim Battle - CF

When he was selected as the Yankees' 3rd round pick in 2003 draft out of McIntosh High School, scouts labeled him as a bigger version of Tom Goodwin. Battle would be excited if he could duplicate the 14-year career Goodwin has had at the Major League level. Battle appears to be stronger than Goodwin and could hit with more authority. Still early, Battle has shown decent patience at the plate. He'll have to make more contact at the plate to get on base more and utilize his speed on the base paths. Battle should be patrolling center field for Charleston in 2005.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

A

Staten Island

.246

.302

.351

.066

22.4

199



Justin Christian - 2B

An undrafted free-agent signing, Christian was Staten Island's most consistent hitter all season. Christian did it all at the plate, leading the team in home runs (with seven HRs) from the leadoff spot. Christian was third in batting average among the regulars and showed good selectivity at the plate, drawing the second most walks on the team (behind Zamora). Don't forget that he also led the club in stolen bases with 14 and was thrown out just four times. Christian has earned the starting 2B job for Charleston next season and the Yankees could have a real "find" on their hands in Christian.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

A

Staten Island

.274

.336

.438

.084

31.6

208



Cody Ehlers - 1B

Ehlers was the Yankees' 11th round pick in the 2004 draft out of University of Missouri and was used as the left-handed batter as part of a platoon at first base this past season. Not getting the consistent at-bats one would want, Ehlers struggled all year to stay above the "Mendoza" line. Despite hitting just .191 for the season, Ehlers showed some good patience at the plate and a decent extra-base hit percentage. The problem is making more consistent contact. Ehlers could find himself back in Staten Island in 2005 but could be part of a platoon again to begin the year in Charleston. It'll be interesting to see what he can do given the full-time duties at first base.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

A

Staten Island

.191

.253

.268

.071

30.0

157



Edwar Gonzalez - RF

A free-agent signing out of Venezuela, Gonzalez did play 14 games for Battle Creek earlier in the year before being shipped to Staten Island. Gonzalez is a whiz defensively and has a cannon for an arm, perfect for right field. Sure the .223 batting average is less than exciting, but his peripheral numbers show he has more potential. A bit small (5'10", 200 lbs.), Gonzalez is built like a fire-hydrant and shows good power potential as he develops. His 34.5% of hits that went for extra-base hits is a good sign of things to come. If he can make more contact as he develops, he has the chance to be a good outfield prospect for the Yankees.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

A

Staten Island

.223

.279

.354

.051

34.5

130



Estee Harris - LF

At first glance, people might think Harris had a terrible year in 2004, especially when looking at the batting averages he posted at Battle Creek and Staten Island. A lot is expected of you when you are the 2nd round pick (drafted in the 2nd round out of Central Islip High School in the 2003 draft) in any draft, but Harris' peripheral stats show the promise that made him a local baseball hero on Long Island. He's extremely patient at the plate and that's one of the hardest things to teach such a young ballplayer. His extra-base hit percentage was also a very telling sign, leading the Staten Island regulars in that category. Harris will have to make the leap next season when he's Charleston's starting leftfielder and try and put together a good season for a full year. His peripheral stats show he's ready to make that leap in a big way...if he can make more contact at the plate.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

A

Battle Creek

.214

.305

.323

.099

31.7

192

A

Staten Island

.243

.327

.428

.094

42.9

173



Ben Jones - 1B

Jones, the Yankees' 14th round pick out of the University of Louisiana in this past year's draft, split time with Ehlers as the right-handed part of a platoon at first base. In limited time, Jones showed good promise at the plate as only veteran Hector Zamora had a higher batting average among the starters for Staten Island. Jones was tied for second on the team in home runs despite not getting the consistent at-bats others received. Jones could be Charleston's starting 1B in 2005.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

A

Staten Island

.280

.337

.440

.074

28.6

150



Peter Pilittere - C

Pilittere was the Yankees' 13th round pick out of Cal-State Fullerton in the 2004 draft and split time with Kevin Nelson and Troy Caradonna at catcher for the Staten Island Yankees this past season. He did not show too much at the plate in his 121 at-bats, but we'll reserve judgement until he's had a full year under his belt. He'll have to work on his selectivity as he only drew 3 walks in 34 games for the Yankees in 2004.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

A

Staten Island

.215

.252

.264

.024

23.1

121



Grant Plumley - SS

Plumley was the Yankees' 9th round pick in the 2004 draft out of Oral Roberts University. The Yankees also drafted Plumley's teammate from Oral Roberts, catcher Nathan Griffin, in the 40th round. Plumley was the guy that found himself in the lineup just about every day, accumulating 50 more at-bats than anybody else on the team. He showed decent offensive numbers in his professional debut, doing a little bit of everything at the plate. Plumley will still be looking for his first professional home run in 2005 as he could start the year in Charleston as the starting shortstop. He'll have to cut down on his 18 errors in 62 games however.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

A

Staten Island

.252

.297

.310

.048

20.0

258



Scott Rich - OF

Rich was the Yankees' 21st round pick out of Rider University in this year's draft and was used as Staten Island's fourth outfielder. He does a little bit of everything, showing adequate patience at the plate and a decent extra-base hit percentage. Rich could be ticketed for a repeat season with Staten Island in 2005 as a starting outfielder to see what he can do.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

A

Staten Island

.243

.300

.338

.081

27.2

136



Hector Zamora - 3B

Zamora was the Yankees' 21st round pick out of San Jose State way back in the 2002 draft and played his third consecutive season with Staten Island this past year. He's now a little old for the NY-Penn League so it's hard to judge Zamora's numbers fairly. One thing is certain: he's a patient hitter! Zamora, the Staten Island third baseman, is very selective at the plate but has not shown the power one would expect from a power hitting position. He'll have to show more at higher levels if he's going to retain the "prospect" label. Expect him to make the jump to Charleston next season to begin the 2005 campaign, with a quick call-up to Tampa if he shows early success so he can begin playing with players his same age.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

A

Staten Island

.289

.412

.401

.158

25.9

187



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OF Tim Battle (profile)
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1B Cody Ehlers (profile)
RF Edwar Gonzalez (profile)
OF Estee Harris (profile)
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C P.J. Pilittere (profile)
SS Grant Plumley (profile)
OF Scott Rich (profile)
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