Cleary the Yankees are not going to stick with Brian Roberts forever. Even if he stays with them the entire season, the Yankees will be looking elsewhere at second base after this season.
One option is former fifth round pick Robert Refsnyder. Refsnyder was an outfielder in college but the Yankees opted to move him to second base upon drafting him. He has moved through system nicely, showing speed at some times and some power at others. Last season he stole 16 bases along with a .408 on base percentage at high-A and this year he has a .210 ISO with a .385 on base percentage at double-A.
Scouting wise he is a bat control type infielder but having at least some ability to hit home runs and steal bases makes him relatively attractive in dynasty formats. He looks like a Tommy La Stella or Scooter Gennett with more power potential and speed, which is really the only thing that keeps those two from being really interesting in shallower leagues.
So, when should we expect Refsnyder to get his opportunity? It is a bit difficult to say. Roberts is the incumbent but if he continues to hit like he does he won’t have much of a leash left. Kelly Johnson would seemingly be the next in line to get full time plate appearances at the position, and the Yankees could always make a midseason move for either a third baseman and move Yangervis Solarte to second or acquire a second baseman of their own.
Even after that, triple-A second baseman Jose Pirela could be the next guy called upon. With Refsnyder we are probably looking at mid-2015 but I like his upside and downside a bit more than Pirela’s, who spent three seasons at double-A. Pirela has shown improvements the past few years and was young when he originally started at double-A, but Refsnyder has hit better across the minors and I think if there is in fact a long term internal option with the Yankees it’s Refsnyder.
The Yankees are always a difficult team to project in terms of future roster spots due to their massive wallets. But if you are looking to find the next Yangervis Solarte for cheap, Refsnyder could be that guy.
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