New York Yankees prospect Justus Sheffield hopes he’ll be the next “Baby Bomber” to make an impact with the Bronx Bombers this summer. But until then, the 21-year-old lefty continues to dominate at the minor league level. Sheffield’s 2017 season not only impressed the Yankees front office, it also earned him a spot on MLB’s Top 10 LHP prospects.
Sheffield and outfielder Clint Frazier were traded to the Yankees in exchange for left-handed reliever Andrew Miller in 2016. Since then, Sheffield worked on his control, which paid off in 2017; he was 7-6 with a 3.18 ERA in 17 starts for the Double-A Trenton Thunder. He also pitched in the Arizona Fall League, but his time was limited due to an oblique injury. Nevertheless, the lefty went 2-2 with a 3.10 ERA for the Scottsdale Scorpions.
During a recent interview with MLB.com, Sheffield admitted he was pleased with how his 2017 season went, and is looking forward to having a successful 2018 campaign.
“I saw a lot of positives. It seems like the Yankees saw a lot of positives out of me this year also,” Sheffield said. “I definitely had a great time going out to the [Arizona] Fall League. That was big for me, just getting to go back out there and get my innings back under me, facing those higher-type guys and actually get out there and compete.
“I think I was just hungry to get back on the field, missing those two months. I thought I was going to get a few innings in before the playoffs; it ended up not working out that way. I think going to the Fall League [helped], just being hungry and getting to go out on the field and compete again, against those top guys. It’s time to play ball.”
Rounding out the top 10 left-handed prospects list are Luiz Gohara (Atlanta Braves), Brendan McKay (Tampa Bay Rays), Adrian Morejon (San Diego Padres), Kolby Allard (Atlanta Braves), Jesus Luzardo (Oakland Athletics), Stephen Gonsalves (Minnesota Twins), and Max Fried (Atlanta Braves).