23-Year-Old Outfielder – New York Yankees
2015 Fantasy Baseball Outlook
Perhaps only Bubba Starling can match Williamsí fall from grace in recent years among outfield prospects. As a 22-year-old, Williams spent all of 2014 at Double-A Trenton, and slashed just .223/.290/....
Williams was optioned to Double-A Trenton on Friday.
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New York Yankees Roster
MajorsBeltran, Carlos (OF)
AAAAngelini, Carmen (SS)
AABarbato, Johnny (P)
A+Allen, Scott (P)
AAndujar, Miguel (3B)
RookieAmundaray, Jonathan (OF)
Mason Williams: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
Williams' prospect status lost a good bit of its luster in 2013, thanks to mediocre on-field performances (he hit just .261 in High-A, and only .153 in a 72 at-bat sample in Double-A) and to off-field troubles, capped by a DUI arrest. The 22-year-old Williams has excellent speed, but is a poor basestealer, consistently being caught approximately 40 percent of the time throughout his minor league career. He also doesn't show great hitting mechanics, as he tends to shift his weight forward too early, which can sap his power potential. Williams can be an elite defender in center field, and he still has the tools that scouts get excited about, but he needs to take a step forward in his return to Trenton in 2014 to regain the hype.
Williams is a toolsy center fielder who moved up a lot of prospect lists this past season, despite having his season cut short by a shoulder injury in August. Williams has excellent speed and good baserunning instincts, and has the bat speed to develop more power as he fills out. Williams is expected to make a full recovery from his shoulder surgery well before spring training, and if he doesn't hit too many developmental roadblocks he should be the Yankees' center fielder by 2015 or so. He profiles as a potential star center fielder expected to hit for average, while offering excellent speed and decent power.
Williams, 20, had a really impressive year with short-season Staten Island in 2011, batting .349 with an .863 OPS, and stealing 28 bases in 68 games.Williams has all the tools you want in a center fielder; the speed is obvious from the stolen-base numbers, the hit tool is legitimate, and he appears to take good routes in the field and play the position very well. While he hit just three homers, his .468 slugging percentage isn't awful. Williams will never be any kind of power threat, but he shouldn't be overpowered by more advanced pitching either. He's a prospect to watch in dynasty leagues, and could see the majors by 2014.