Notes on the Yankees Draft
by Tamar Chalker
July 14, 2023
While the All-Star Break truly was a break for every Yankee player not named Gerrit Cole, the front office certainly stayed busy. First, there was the announcement about Dillon Lawson’s firing - which was probably the least the Yankees could do given their pathetic offensive performance this year - and Sean Casey’s hiring. With an eye towards the more distant future, however, was the 2023 Draft.
The Yankees made some interesting choices in this year’s draft. Unlike last year, when they only drafted college players, New York took four high school players, two of whom will be interesting to watch progress. The Yankees took George Lombard, Jr., a shortstop out of Miami with their first pick. If his name sounds familiar, it’s probably because his father played in the majors and is currently Detroit’s bench coach. George Lombard, Jr. is also an elite soccer player, which is one reason the Yankees plan to stick with him at short. He has been projected to move to third due to his size, but the Yankees believe he has the athleticism to stay in the middle infield.
In the thirteenth round, the Yankees selected Josh Tiedeman, a prep player from Arizona. Tiedeman was drafted as both a third baseman and a pitcher. Damon Oppenheimer has stated that the Bronx Bombers are more than ready to give a two-way payer a shot. The fact that Tiedeman is coming out of high school has helped their decision, as they figure they can allow him to spend a couple of years testing out the role. Of course, if he seems to develop better in one direction, the Yankees wouldn’t ignore that fact.
The Yankees’ second pick of the draft came towards the end of the third round and they are very excited about this prospect. Kyle Carr, a southpaw from Palomar College, could also play outfield, but he has shown an inclination towards being a pitcher primarily. He throws 92 to 96mph and makes it look easy, according to scouting reports. Carr also throws a lot of strikes, walking only 19 batters in 78 innings.
Fourth round pick Roc Riggio could very well be the Yankees future player that all the other teams love to hate. The start second baseman out of Oklahoma State is known to be a showboat. He’s gotten attention for his over-the-top home run celebrations and has acknowledged he likes having a target on his back. If he can, in fact, back up his bravado with solid play, he could be a fun player to watch in the Bronx someday.
There’s a look at a handful of the Yankees’ draft selections. I hope we get to see at least one or two of them pan out - and if not, I hope they bring New York some solid talent via trade.