Dominguez starting at extended spring camp

May 2nd, 2021

NEW YORK -- Austin Wells, the Yankees' top pick in last year's MLB Draft, is slated to begin his professional career this week with Low-A Tampa -- though fans must wait a bit longer for a glimpse of Jasson Dominguez, the club's No. 1 prospect according to MLB Pipeline.

Dominguez is slated to begin the year participating in extended spring training at the club's player development complex in Tampa, Fla.

The switch-hitting Dominguez has earned lofty comparisons to the likes of Bo Jackson, Mickey Mantle and Mike Trout for his raw athleticism, but he also just turned 18 in February and has yet to play in a pro game.

"Everything that we've seen from this kid, he's super talented, but he hasn't played a game here yet," Kevin Reese, the Yankees' senior director of player development, said this spring. "It's hard to help him manage those expectations, because he's not going to show up tomorrow and perform like Mike Trout or Aaron Judge or Brett Gardner.

"We'll keep him working; our goal is to get the best Jasson Dominguez that's possible. Hopefully, that's a really good player that helps us win games and win championships."

The Yankees announced the break camp rosters for their affiliates in Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, Double-A Somerset, High-A Hudson Valley and Low-A Tampa on Sunday.

Among the other top talent that will be watched closely: right-hander Deivi García (No. 3 prospect, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre), shortstop Oswald Peraza (No. 4 prospect, Hudson Valley), right-hander Luis Gil (No. 5 prospect, Somerset) and right-hander Luis Medina (No. 7 prospect, Hudson Valley).

Wells, 21, was the 28th overall selection in last year's MLB Draft and earned rave reviews from coaches and scouts this spring for an advanced hitting approach.

"I can't imagine being a player during this time, especially a first-round pick who has to wait a year to get into a game," Reese said this spring. "He's been a total pro; communicating really well with our hitting, catching, nutrition, strength and conditioning staff."

Glove story
With Gleyber Torres set to receive a day off on Sunday, Yankees manager Aaron Boone said that it was a close call in deciding between Gio Urshela and Tyler Wade to fill in at shortstop. Ultimately, Boone opted to use Urshela as the backup, saying that he prefers Wade's versatility off the bench.

"I really value what Tyler brings at different points in the game, from the speed game, defensively … There's a real dynamic he brings," Boone said. "I like his role coming off the bench in some targeted situations."

Eyes on the prize
The Astros' long-awaited visit to Yankee Stadium is right around the corner, with Houston set to begin its first series in the Bronx since details of its 2017-18 sign-stealing scandal were made public.

Domingo Germán will start Tuesday's series opener, opposite Zack Greinke, and the right-hander said that Houston's visit has not been a major topic of conversation in the Bombers' clubhouse.

"No, not at all -- not as of right now," Germán said through an interpreter. "We know we're playing Houston, so we know we've got to go out there and compete and give the best we have -- just like every single time we go out there."

Bombers bits
• Entering Sunday, Giancarlo Stanton had 15 batted balls greater than 115 mph, according to Statcast. That is far more than any other team -- the Angels and Blue Jays are second to the Yankees (18) with five.

• The Yankees' American League-best 3.13 ERA through 27 games marked the club's lowest ERA through 27 games since 1981 (2.90).

This date in Yankees history
May 2, 1961: Mickey Mantle drove in five runs in the Yankees' 6-4, 10-inning win at Minnesota's Metropolitan Stadium. With the game tied at 2, Mantle hit a two-out grand slam off Camilo Pascual that held up as the game-winner.