New York Yankees’ top prospect Anthony Volpe has had incredibly high expectations since he was drafted 30th overall in the 2019 MLB Draft.
How high? Hall of Famer Derek Jeter was the comparison by some.
While Jeter was the epitome of what the Yankees stand for on and off the field, Volpe is doing his best to at least show why people consider him one of the best shortstop prospects in baseball during his early spring training appearances.
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But if you ask Willie Randolph, who has seen Volpe up close and personal in Tampa, he not only thought of Jeter but another Yankees captain as well: Don Mattingly.
“Some of those guys have ‘it,’” Randolph told the New York Post’s Mark W. Sanchez. “I see a little bit of ‘it’ in [Volpe] as far as his total focus.
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“You have a young player who’s focused on getting better and focused on how to learn how to play the game. That’s stuff that really excites me.”
Hitting coach Dillon Lawson also spoke to Volpe’s talent, saying, “He’s exactly what we all thought he would be.” Fans who have been watching the Yankees this spring are starting to notice it as well.
Volpe has gone 4 for 11 with three runs scored, one double and his first home run that was hit against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Thursday.
He’s also shown above-average speed, swiping two bags against the Toronto Blue Jays in his first spring training game.
Volpe, though, is considered a bit of a long shot to break camp with the Yankees. Isiah Kiner-Falefa and Oswald Peraza trump him in experience.
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But Randolph can see that Volpe is patient and working on perfecting his craft.
“From Day 1, he’s been right here with me. You can tell he wants to be the best,” he said.
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Between Double-A Somerset and Triple-A Scranton Wilkes/Barre last season, Volpe hit .249/.342/.460 with 21 homers and 65 RBI.