2004 Columbus Clippers Position Prospect Review
Cano Made the Jump from Trenton
Cano Made the Jump from Trenton

Posted Nov 17, 2004


PinstripesPlus looks at the peripherals stats of the Columbus Clippers positional players to project development. We will look at the guys who amassed 200 at-bats for Columbus and did not accrue 200 or more at-bats for the Yankees. (Free Preview of Premium Content)

Darren Bragg - OF

Originally drafted by the Seattle Mariners in the 22nd round of the 1991 draft out of Georgia Tech, Bragg has played in seven different organizations in his 14 years of professional baseball. His peripherals were fantastic across the board but that was expected from an established veteran who turned 36 years old in September.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

AAA

Columbus

.282

.367

.469

.119

41.6

273



Homer Bush - 2B

Bush came back to the Yankees' organization after three years in the Toronto system and a cup of coffee with the Marlins in 2002. Bush, who was originally drafted by the Padres in the 7th round of the 1991 draft, was used as the Clippers' second baseman before Cano was promoted from Trenton. Despite being a proven veteran, Bush did not have great peripheral numbers. He is what he is and won't be around in 2005 as the starting second baseman as Cano appears to be a lock to man 2B for Columbus next season. Bush, who re-signed with the Yankees this off season, will provide some insurance should Cano falter or sustain an injury.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

AAA

Columbus

.291

.327

.380

.045

25.0

234



Robinson Cano - 2B

Cano was a free agent signing out of the Dominican Republic and made his Yankees' debut with Staten Island back in 2001. Since then he's steadily climbed the prospect rankings and reached the AAA level this past season at the tender age of 21 years old (he just turned 22 in October). Cano is not your prototypical middle infielder. He has good speed but does not steal many bases at all. He has just two SBs (both for Trenton) in 2004, bumping his career minor league total to eleven. He hits for a good amount of extra-base hits and has shown decent selectivity at the plate. His peripheral stats, at such a young age considering his level, show that the best has yet to come for Cano. He should be the everyday starting second baseman for the Clippers next season and has the look of a future Major Leaguer in that same capacity.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

AAA

Columbus

.259

.316

.403

.077

30.4

216

AA

Trenton

.301

.356

.497

.076

39.8

292



Caonabo Cosme - 2B/SS

Cosme had a decent season for the Clippers serving as a backup second baseman and shortstop. Originally signed as an international free agent out of the Dominican Republic by the Oakland A's, Cosme showed a much better eye at the plate than his previous seven minor league seasons. He has struck out nearly three times as many times as walks drawn in his minor league career and has average extra-base hit ability. Cosme, who just re-signed with the Yankees this offseason, will be 26 prior to the start of the 2005 season and has the look of a career minor leaguer.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

AAA

Columbus

.250

.315

.341

.083

24.1

232



Jeff Deardorff - 3B

Deardorff is a former Brewers prospect that also spent a couple of seasons in the Twins' organization prior to signing a minor league free agent deal with the Yankees last year. He has always show a little pop in his bat and a willingness to take a walk. While his peripherals were solid, it should have been expected from a 26-year old third baseman. Deardorff is a free agent this winter and it remains to be seen if he'll be back with the Yankees in 2005. Chances are he could get a better opportunity with another organization.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

AAA

Columbus

.271

.347

.440

.104

29.1

432



Felix Escalona - SS

Originally a free agent signing by the Astros out of Venezuela, Escalona has bounced around from organization to organization the last couple of years. 2004 was his best season since hitting 42 doubles, 16 home runs, and stealing 46 bases in the South Atlantic League back in 2001. Like Cosme, Escalona will be 26 years old before next season. He has proven to be a valuable backup player.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

AAA

Columbus

.308

.371

.431

.065

29.0

448



Sal Fasano - C

Fasano, once a highly touted catching prospect for the Royals, was originally drafted by Kansas City in the 37th round of the 1993 draft out of the University of Evansville. He's always been able to put up decent power numbers in his career as shown by his extra-base hit percentage this past season. The 33-year old catcher was brought in to the organization more to serve as a mentor for budding catching prospect Dioner Navarro and to work with the Yankees' young pitchers. His value as a player/coach on the field is much higher than any offense he could provide. He's a minor league free agent again this year and he'd be welcomed back to the Yankees with open arms.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

AAA

Columbus

.229

.273

.428

.041

48.1

236



Mike Kelly - OF

Kelly was the #2 pick overall way back in the 1991 draft by the Braves and was supposed to be the second coming of Barry Bonds, albeit a right-handed version. Well Kelly's production never caught up with his talent or hype and he signed a minor league free agent deal with the Yankees last off season. As expected from a 34-year old first round talent, Kelly posted decent peripherals for the Clippers this past season. He's a free agent again this year and is not expected to be back with the Yankees in 2005.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

AAA

Columbus

.253

.336

.448

.100

37.3

297



Andy Phillips - 1B

After an injury prematurely cut short his 2003 season, Phillips bounced back with a tremendous season at Columbus this year. His overall numbers (.318-26-85) and peripheral numbers were way above the International League average. Phillips has nothing left to prove in the minors and deserves a shot at the Major Leagues. The problem is he turns 28 years old the first week of the season in 2005 and he does not appear to be in the Yankees' plans. If he's not traded, he'll be back in Columbus manning first base for the Clippers next year.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

AAA

Columbus

.318

.388

.569

.105

37.0

434



Kevin Reese - OF

Originally drafted by the Padres in the 27th round of the 2000 draft, Reese has been one of the more consistent hitters in the Yankees organization the last three years and had a fantastic season for both the Trenton Thunder and the Columbus Clippers in 2004. His extra-base hit percentage for Trenton was out of this world, hitting 48% of his hits for extra bases! The splits always throw people off and many may have missed the 50 doubles, 7 triples, and 14 home runs hit by Reese in his two stops this past season. His has tremendous power despite not being the biggest guy on the field and utilizes his exceptional speed. Reese will be 27 at the start of next season and should be a big-time run producer for the Clippers in 2005, possibly getting a call up to the Yankees as an emergency outfielder much in the same manner Bubba Crosby did this past season.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

AAA

Columbus

.323

.370

.521

.052

32.9

217

AA

Trenton

.298

.348

.489

.065

48.0

329



John Rodriguez - OF

Rodriguez is a native of the Bronx and grew up a Yankees fan. He had a fantastic season for the Clippers in 2004 after a so-so season for Columbus in 2003. His extra-base hit percentage and walk ratio were way above the league average this past season and was one of the fan favorites in Columbus. Originally signed by the Yankees in 1996 as an undrafted free agent, Rodriguez is once again a free agent this off season and it doesn't appear likely that he will be back with the Yankees. At 28 years old, Rodriguez might try to hook on with a team that will give him a shot as a reserve outfielder in the Major Leagues next season.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

AAA

Columbus

.294

.382

.542

.113

46.8

378



Mike Vento - OF

Like Phillips, Vento has nothing left to prove in the minor leagues. He once again had a very good season, posting solid peripherals in 2004. He's shown adequate patience at the plate and above average extra-base hit potential. He's got the look of a solid fourth outfielder at the Major League level. Vento is a free agent this off season and could decide to get his chance with another club as he does not figure in the Yankees' plans anytime soon. Like Rodriguez, he's good in every facet of the game but his time with the Yankees might be over.

Level

Team

AVG.

OBP%

SLG%

BB/PA

XBH

AB

AAA

Columbus

.275

.333

.441

.070

35.5

451



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