4 Yankees stalwarts make the cut on ESPN’s prestigious top 100 list

Yankees' Juan Soto after smashing a home run at Yankees spring training 2024
Esteban Quiñones
Monday March 11, 2024

Table of Contents

ESPN’s annual MLB Top 100 list is always a subject of much debate and excitement among baseball fans, and this year’s edition is no different. Four key players from the New York Yankees have made the cut, demonstrating the depth and talent of the team’s roster. These players—Aaron Judge, Juan Soto, Gerrit Cole, and Anthony Volpe—each bring unique skills and contributions to the table, setting the stage for what promises to be an exhilarating season.

Yankees captain Aaron Judge #2

Aaron Judge has undeniably become the cornerstone of the Yankees, embodying the very essence of what it means to be a franchise player. His 2023 season further cemented his status as a crucial element of the team’s success. An injury that sidelined him for a significant portion of the season had a palpable impact on the team’s performance, highlighting his value beyond just numbers. With an adjusted OPS+ of 175, even while not at full health, Judge’s prowess at the plate is undeniable. The addition of Juan Soto batting in front of him promises to provide even better pitches to hit, forecasting a “monster year” for Judge.

Aaron Judge during a Yankees' batting practise.

Newcomer Juan Soto #3

Despite his relatively young career, Juan Soto has already made a significant mark in the MLB, especially with his bat. His transition to the Yankees adds an exciting layer to his journey, with high expectations pinned on his performance in the iconic pinstripes. His exceptional on-base skills, coupled with his power-hitting ability, suggest that Yankee Stadium could be the backdrop for his most impressive season yet. With a potent lineup surrounding him, Soto is poised to chase after not only remarkable personal stats but also an MVP title.

Rotation leader: Gerrit Cole #7

Gerrit Cole’s pitching has been nothing short of stellar, providing the Yankees with reliability and dominance from the mound. Despite a postseason miss, Cole’s individual achievements, highlighted by his first Cy Young Award, reflect his critical role in the team’s pitching staff. Known for his durability and precision, Cole continues to be a benchmark for pitching excellence in the league. While there are some concerns about fluctuations in his whiff rate, the anticipation around his 2024 performance remains high, with expectations that he will maintain his ace status.

Gerrit Cole during an spring training section

Derek Jeter’s second coming: Anthony Volpe #95

Anthony Volpe’s debut season might not have been dazzling in terms of batting average, but his overall impact and potential are evident. His 20-20 season and a Gold Glove award as a rookie underscore his multifaceted talent and hint at his upward trajectory. The Yankees have high hopes for his development, particularly in improving his command at the plate. If Volpe can refine his approach and boost his contact rate, his second season could solidify his position among the top players and contribute significantly to the team’s success.

As the 2024 season unfolds, these four Yankees stalwarts will be under the spotlight, each playing a pivotal role in shaping the team’s fortunes. Their inclusion in ESPN’s Top 100 list is a testament to their exceptional abilities and the expectations that come with them. Whether they can live up to these projections remains to be seen, but for Yankees fans and baseball aficionados alike, it promises to be a thrilling journey. What do you think? Leave your comment below!

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