Who is Anthony Volpe, Yankees’ next Derek Jeter?

Anthony Volpe is hitting a home run against the Pirates during the Yankees spring training in 2023.

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On March 24, the Yankees and Twins played a split-squad game in the Grapefruit League. Anthony Volpe was the shortstop for the Yankees. The rookie hit a two-run home run off Pablo Lopez in the third inning. This was his third home run of 2023 spring training and made it more likely that he would be the Yankees’ shortstop on Opening Day against the Giants. The Yankees’ best young player had his way, and Anthony Volpe became the first rookie to play on Opening Day since Aaron Judge.

Anthony Volpe is a Derek Jeter fan

Anthony Volpe, who is 22, really meant it. He grew up in Morristown, New Jersey, as a Yankees fan, and he looked up to Derek Jeter, the Yankees’ former shortstop, and captain who is in the Hall of Fame. In 2014, he and his father went to the Futures Game and Jeter’s last All-Star Game. Volpe used to imagine himself as a child playing shortstop at Yankee Stadium. Now that he is a Yankees prospect, he still does this.

A young Anthony Volpe with Derek Jeter and in Yankees pinstripes.

Born to doctor parents

Anthony Michael Volpe was born in Watchung, NJ, on April 28, 2001. His father is a urologist and mother is an anesthesiologist. Anthony Volpe went to Delbarton School in Morristown, New Jersey, and played baseball for the school. As a student, he put a high value on higher education and wanted to eventually get his degree at Vanderbilt.

As a senior, he had a batting average of .488, seven home runs, 34 RBIs, and 17 stolen bases. Perfect Game chose him as the 2019 New Jersey High School Player of the Year. Anthony Volpe has agreed to play baseball for Vanderbilt University in college.

Anthony Volpe’s drafting and early career

In the 2019 Major League Baseball draft, the New York Yankees picked Anthony Volpe as the 30th pick in the first round. He signed on June 10 and got a signing bonus of $2.7 million. His first job was with the Pulaski Yankees of the Appalachian League. He hit .215 with two home runs and 11 RBIs in 34 games.

Anthony Volpe is signing MLB Draft contract with the Yankees on June 10, 2019.

Anthony Volpe worked to get stronger and improve his swing during the COVID-19 shutdown, which led to the cancellation of the 2020 minor league season. He was sent to the Low-A Southeast Tampa Tarpons to start the 2021 season. The Yankees moved him up to the Hudson Valley Renegades of High-A East after he hit .302/.455/.623 with 12 home runs and 49 RBIs in 54 games.

The Yankees sent Anthony Volpe to the Double-A Eastern League’s Somerset Patriots to start the 2022 season. On June 26, his homers enabled the team to trounce the Hartford Yard Goats. In a game between the top two teams in the Eastern League Northeast Division, the winner took all, his solo home run gave the first-half title to the Somerset Patriots. Anthony Volpe played in the All-Star Futures Game in July 2022. He was a member of the American League. In 109 games for Somerset, Volpe hit .252 with 18 home runs and 60 RBIs. On September 2, he was moved up to the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders of the Triple-A International League.

Austin Wells, Blake Perkins, and Burt are some of the players on his Somerset team. Anthony Volpe said that his mother used to cook for the whole team after Sunday home games. Volpe loves the Yankees and Derek Jeter a lot. During the All-Star Weekend in July 2022, he got to play in the Futures Game at Target Field in Minnesota. It was the same stadium where he went to see his hero Derek Jeter play in his last Midsummer Classic at the 2014 All-Star Game.

He is for the big league from the start

Somerset Manager Dan Fiorito said that Anthony Volpe was very disciplined at the plate, had power, could hit the ball with the barrel of the bat, played strong defense, and was fast on the bases. Volpe stole 33 bases last season, and he has already stolen 35 bases this season in fewer games.

Anthony Volpe’s behavior, on the other hand, comes up most often when Yankees officials and his teammates talk about him. Fiorito said that Volpe was a “relentless competitor” and that it was hard to find leaders among players so young. Burt said that his friend’s attitude is the same whether he is 0 for 4 with four strikeouts or 4 for 4 with four home runs.

In 2021, when Anthony Volpe hit .294/.423/.604 with 27 home runs and 86 RBI, MLB Pipelines named him the hitting prospect of the year.

Since September 2, when he was moved to Triple-A RailRiders, he has done well there. Anthony Volpe was the Yankees’ No. 5 prospect and had only played six games in Triple-A when he hit two home runs at Durham in the first week of September 2022. It’s his first game with two home runs since June 19, 2021, and it’s the second year in a row that he’s hit at least 20 home runs. Because Anthony Volpe could hit, the Yankees were very interested in adding him to their Major League team.

Anthony Volpe ranks among top Yankees prospects.
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The young right-handed player has done well at every level of the game. Anthony Volpe was on the AA Somerset Patriots for 110 games. He hit 18 home runs and drove in 60 runs. At the end of the season, he had stolen 44 bases and had an OBP of.348.

The shortstop didn’t get off to a good start in 2022, so his slash line was .249/.342/.460. But he hit 21 home runs and stole 50 bases, which was a record in the MiLB until 1995 when Braves legend Andruw Jones did the same thing. From May 14 to September 8, Anthony Volpe hit 289/.377/.532, which got him promoted to Triple-A.

With Anthony Volpe’s rise, Brian Cashman, the Yankees’ general manager, might not have wanted to sign a veteran infielder in free agency. Michael Kay, who works for the Yankees, says that Cashman has already told Volpe that he might become the Yankees’ shortstop. In a recent YES Network show, the Yankees’ longtime voice talked about Volpe and his chances of starting for the Bronx Bombers in 2023:

“Brian told him, ‘You have a chance at this job. The way you performed at spring training…’”

MLB Pipeline’s list of the top 10 shortstops for 2023 ranked Anthony Volpe as the team’s No. 1 prospect and the No. 5 prospect in all of Major League Baseball. This added to the buzz that Volpe will be the next shortstop for the Yankees.

The 2023 spring training camp

In 2023, the Yankees asked Anthony Volpe to come to spring training even though he wasn’t on the team’s roster. Anthony Volpe, the Yankees’ top prospect, reportedly came to camp because GM Brian Cashman told him over the phone that he was in the running to start at shortstop on Opening Day.

Anthony Volpe at the Yankees’ team-bonding mini golf tournament as Cortes and Rizzo observe him..

Anthony Volpe did the best he could with the chance. On February 26, Day 2 of spring training for the 2023 New York Yankees, he lived up to the hype. The 21-year-old showed off all his skills by going 2 for 4 with a double and stealing two bases, both in the top of the fourth. He played shortstop and second base in the next two games to show how good he was at defense and how much he knew about baseball.

On March 2, Anthony Volpe smashed Mitch Keller, a right-handed pitcher for the Pirates at LECOM Park, to his first spring-training first home run. The ball went over the left-field wall and into the boardwalk area. In that game, Anthony Volpe went 4-for-11, drove in three runs, and hit a double too. MLB Pipeline reported that the Yankees’ prospect, who is 5 feet 11 inches tall and weighs 180 pounds, had a good lower half that showed he could hit the ball hard to all fields. Willie Randolph, a baseball legend, said that Anthony Volpe reminded him of Derek Jeter and Don Mattingly.

Anthony Volpe did better in the Grapefruit League than both Peraza and the 2022 shortstop, Isiah Kiner-Falefa. Volpe hit .277 with five doubles, three home runs, and an OPS of .967, while Peraza made .171 (6-for-35) and had an OPS of .607. IKF knows he can’t compete with the rising prospect duos.

Fans started to believe that out of the three shortstop candidates for the Yankees, Anthony Volpe holds the most potential. However, he spent most of last year at Double-A Somerset and only 22 games at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

The Yankees’ 40-man roster doesn’t have the prospect. But Anthony Volpe may get a place on it if starter Montas and pitchers Gil move to the injured list. Even though he has only played 22 games at the Triple-A level, some important people in the front office think that Volpe’s age and lack of experience should not stop him from moving up.

anthony-volpe-new-york-yankees
Charles Wenzelberg / NYP

When questioned about Anthony Volpe’s lack of Triple-A experience and the total amount of professional at-bats (1,259), Boone acknowledged it will factor in making the final selection.

“It’s all things we talk about as a group and as we get towards the end of spring and we’re starting to make the decisions about rosters and stuff, there’ll be a lot of voices that have thoughts and opinions,” Boone said. “That’s part of his case and the case against and story. Yeah, it’s all part of the equation that you gotta make a decision on at some point.”

Since Hideki Matsui in 2003, no Yankee has made his debut in the Major Leagues in the first game of the season. Before Matsui, it hadn’t happened since Jerry Lumpe in 1956 and Mickey Mantle in 1951. But it might happen next week with Anthony Volpe, who has everything it takes to be a special talent.

“He’s been everything we expected and hoped for. He’s looked the part,” manager Aaron Boone said. “He’s fit in really well; his work has been excellent, and he’s gone out and performed.”

Anthony Volpe wins Yankees shortstop race

The New York Yankees announced on March 26, 2023, that Anthony Volpe would be starting at shortstop due to his impressive showing in spring training. Manager Aaron Boone went to his office to break the news to him. Since being selected by the Yankees with the 30th overall pick in 2019, this was Volpe’s most recent accomplishment.

“My heart was beating pretty hard,” Volpe said. “Incredible. I’m just so excited. It’s hard for me to even put into words.”

Boone slapped his desk and gave Anthony Volpe a hearty handshake as he welcomed the Yankees’ top prospect to New York, confirming that the 21-year-old had made the team’s Opening Day roster.

Going into spring training, he was considered a long shot to win the starting shortstop position over Oswald Peraza, another top prospect. As Peraza faltered, Anthony Volpe flourished, winning the admiration of his superiors for his talent and maturity. He had an effect on the game in numerous ways, including his hitting, fielding, running the bases, and general demeanor.

“He’s earned the right to take that spot, and we’re excited for him and excited for us,” Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said of Volpe. “He just dominated all sides of the ball during February and March, and that bodes well, obviously, for him as we move forward.”

Anthony Volpe is the Yankees’ youngest shortstop since Derek Jeter’s 1995 debut at age 20, and he is the second homegrown shortstop after Gleyber Torres to join the MLB team since Jeter’s retirement in 2014.

The New York Post reported, “Volpe will be the Yankees’ Opening Day shortstop against the Giants on Thursday afternoon in The Bronx, injecting a shot of youth, athleticism and hometown flavor into the lineup for a team with World Series aspirations.”

Anthony Volpe in 2023 MLB season

Anthony Volpe’s entry into the MLB was historic from the start, being the youngest player to open a season for the Yankees since Derek Jeter in 1996, and the first position player to make his debut on Opening Day since Hideki Matsui in 2003. This set high expectations, drawing attention not only to his potential but also to the pressures of living up to such comparisons.

Volpe’s impact was immediate and noteworthy. He distinguished himself by becoming the first Yankee to steal at least one base in each of his first two Major League games, showcasing his speed and base-running instincts. This achievement was part of a broader pattern of excellence on the bases, as he went on to steal a base in each of his first three games, a feat only five players have accomplished since 1901. His proficiency in base-stealing was further underscored as he successfully stole in all of his first 10 steal attempts of the season.

His prowess was not limited to base-running. On April 14, during a game against the Minnesota Twins, Volpe hit his first big-league home run, becoming the first Yankee since Bobby Richardson in 1959 to hit a leadoff home run for his first MLB career home run. This milestone was followed by another significant achievement on May 10 against the Oakland Athletics, where he hit his first career grand slam. This not only highlighted his power-hitting capabilities but also made him the youngest Yankees player to hit a grand slam at Yankee Stadium and the team’s first rookie shortstop to achieve this in a game.

anthony-volpe-new-york-yankees
AP Photo/ Frank Franklin II

Despite these achievements, Volpe faced his share of challenges, particularly with his performance at the plate. Critics pointed to his batting average and on-base percentage as areas needing improvement. His early struggles were marked by a notable slump, drawing attention to the adjustments needed for sustained success in the majors.

A pivotal moment that epitomized his ability to adapt and overcome came from an unexpected source — a chicken parm dinner with teammate Austin Wells. This casual gathering led to a critical adjustment in Volpe’s batting stance, after which his performance improved significantly. Following this adjustment, Volpe’s slash line in the subsequent games demonstrated a marked improvement, a testament to his resilience and capacity for self-improvement.

Volpe’s season was also notable for his historic base-stealing record. On May 13, against the Tampa Bay Rays, he set a new Yankees record by stealing his first 13 career bases without being caught, surpassing Joe DiMaggio’s previous record. Towards the season’s end, Volpe achieved another milestone by hitting his 20th home run, joining an elite group of MLB rookies with a 20 home run and 20 stolen base season. This accomplishment placed him among the ranks of notable rookies and underscored his well-rounded skills as a power hitter and a base stealer.

Despite the early criticisms, Volpe’s rookie season concluded on a high note, with his defensive prowess being recognized through the AL Gold Glove Award at shortstop. This accolade was a fitting acknowledgment of his contributions to the team, not just offensively but also with his glove.

What do you think? Leave your comment below.

Standard Batting

YearGPAABRH2B3BHRRBISBCSBBSOBAOBPSLGOPSOPS+TBGDPHBPSHSFIBBPos
2023159601541621132342160245521670.2090.2830.3830.66681207105120*6/H
GPAABRH2B3BHRRBISBCSBBSOBAOBPSLGOPSOPS+TBGDPHBPSHSFIBB
1 Yr159601541621132342160245521670.2090.2830.3830.66681207105120
162 Game Avg.162612551631152342161245531700.2090.2830.3830.66681211105120
Baseball Reference

Career Graph

Gold GlovesFutures GamesDefensive WARGames Played
2023 AL (SS)20222023 AL 2.5 (3rd)2023 AL 159 (6th)
StrikeoutsPower-SpeedAssistsErrors Committed
2023 AL 167 (10th)2023 AL 22.4 (9th)2023 AL 357 (4th)2023 AL 17 (3rd)
Def. Games as SSPutouts as SSAssists as SSErrors Committed as SS
2023 AL 157 (1st)2023 AL 186 (2nd)2023 AL 357 (2nd)2023 AL 17 (2nd)
Double Plays Turned as SSTotal Zone Runs as SS (s.1953)
2023 AL 63 (5th)2023 AL 12 (2nd)
Active 12 (19th)
Baseball Reference

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15 thoughts on “Who is Anthony Volpe, Yankees’ next Derek Jeter?

  1. He is clearly overwhelmed. He needs to go down to AAA for a short time to reset. He will be ok. Right now he needs some time away from the yankees. Their bad play is affecting him also.

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