The titles Jasson Dominguez received when he signed a record-breaking international deal with the Yankees include “otherworldly,” “The Martian,” “the next Mickey Mantle,” and “just Mike Trout.”
The Bombers signed Dominguez to a contract with a $5.1 million signing bonus in 2019, making him arguably the most highly regarded international prospect in MLB history. Baseball talent evaluators from all over the world were optimistic about the eye-popping skills of the Dominican native before they even stepped foot on a minor-league diamond; this would rank him as high as the 32nd-best prospect in the league, according to the source.
In the spring of 2021, Kevin Reese told reporters, “I don’t think [the expectations are] realistic. It’s challenging to assist him in controlling those expectations since he won’t perform tomorrow like Mike Trout or Aaron Judge.
Mantle and Trout are mentioned less frequently in the current review, while Dominguez’s plaque in the Hall of Fame has been delayed. According to MLB Pipeline, the 19-year-old is ranked as baseball’s 47th-best prospect heading into the 2023 season.
There continue to be numerous reasons to dream of the tools that the centerfield prospect still possesses, despite the sheen of a historically hyped prospect starting to fade a little.
In 2022, Dominguez, who was making his debut in the lower leagues, competed at three levels, appearing to improve as he advanced. His slash line through 120 games at Low-A, High-A, and Double-A was.273/.376/.461, with 16 home runs and 59 RBI.
The outfielder performed just five regular season games after getting to Double-A Somerset before lighting up the postseason. In five games, “The Martian” hit.450/.560/.950 with three home runs and 10 RBI. His performance in the championship game, where he went 3-4 and blasted home runs from both sides of the plate, guaranteed him a position at Double-A to start 2023.
At All-Star weekend in Los Angeles, Dominguez received the chance to showcase his abilities for a national audience after being selected for the MLB Futures Game in 2022, along with Yankee farmhand Anthony Volpe, who batted fourth for the American League team. Dominguez gave them something to watch by launching a 415-foot home run from the right side that registered at 107 mph.
Despite the sparkle, many aspects of his game still need to be worked on, such as the in-game power that the Bombers are still waiting to show on a more regular basis. The switch-hitter consistently records exit velocities over 100 mph, and as an 18-year-old in a sim game, he reached as high as 117 mph, earning him strong raw-power marks from raters.
The amount of weight the young outfielder has added to his frame and what that means for his speed and ability to play center field for the long run are hot topics of conversation. Nevertheless, Dominguez swiped 37 bases in 44 attempts last season, showing that the young outfielder’s legs are still very much in evidence. It is essential to note the organization-wide surge in stolen base attempts and the Yankees’ system-wide emphasis on baserunning.
Regarding defense, opinions vary on whether Dominguez will even be a center fielder since his build may be better suited to the corner outfield positions.
According to the source, “His play in the center field receives mixed reviews, with some analysts anticipating that he will stay in the middle and others expecting that his inconsistent defensive play would force him into a corner. Thanks to his solid-to-plus arm strength and offensive promise, he would have no trouble profiling well in the right field.”
As always, only time will tell, so it’s critical to consider the timescale while concluding the possibilities. Dominguez, who has only played one entire season of professional baseball, finished the year just two steps outside the Bronx. He was the youngest player on the Double-A Somerset team by almost two years.
Dominguez has several options to pursue his goals at the primary league level. Currently, the Yanks lack a reliable option for left field for the upcoming season and beyond, and current center fielder Harrison Bader will be a free agent after the 2023 campaign. The Martian might land in the Bronx as early as 2024 if the switch-hitter advances as swiftly in the minors this coming season as he did last year.