The 2023 New York Yankees will go down as one of the worst teams in franchise history, so with September call-ups, the team decided to look to the future.
The Yankees called up 20-year-old outfielder Jasson Domínguez and 24-year-old catcher Austin Wells when rosters expanded Friday night, and they both had debuts to remember.
In their first MLB plate appearances, they both got hits.
Domínguez, the team’s second-ranked prospect, welcomed himself to the big leagues with a bang.
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The switch-hitting Domínguez was batting from the left side against future Hall of Famer Justin Verlander of the Astros in Houston.
Domínguez steered a pitch to the opposite field and into the Crawford Boxes on his very first swing in the major leagues.
The last Yankee to hit a home run in his first MLB plate appearance was Aaron Judge.
Domínguez, nicknamed “The Martian” for his out-of-this-world talent, was signed out of the Dominican Republic as a 16-year-old in 2019 for $5.1 million. He did not play minor league baseball until 2021 because the 2020 minor league season was canceled due to COVID-19.
The outfielder had an outside shot of making the club this year and was in Double-A just a couple of weeks ago.
After being called up to Triple-A, he hit .419 in nine games. His early success, coupled with a lost season, prompted the Yankees to call him up.
Wells, the team’s eighth-rated prospect, was the Yankees’ first-round selection in the 2020 MLB Draft. In 33 Triple-A games this year, he hit .254 with an .802 OPS. He singled in the second inning off Verlander.
The Yankees entered the game against their arch-nemesis at 65-69. Before this year, they had not been under .500 in the month of August since 1995.
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If the top prospects live up to their billing, this season could be forgotten about sooner rather than later.