After Jeter and before Judge, the Yankees do not have a pretty history drafting position players. The Yankees took Jeter in 1992, and no position player they selected in 1993 or ’94 played even a single inning in the majors. They drafted Mike Lowell in 1995, and he probably represents the worst trade made by general manager Brian Cashman, who dealt him to the Marlins for three nondescript pitchers. Lowell played eight games as a Yankee before he was moved, and if it is hard to find good position players from these Yankee drafts, just try finding good ones who actually performed for the Yankees. The second best in that period was Nick Johnson, the third is either Shelley Duncan or Andy Phillips or Greg Bird, if you feel he has done enough to warrant joining the conversation. The best? Brett Gardner is the oasis in the positional wasteland between Judge and Jeter, the next-to-last pick of the 2005 third round. He went into the weekend with 1,120 games, all as a Yankee. The rest of the position players drafted from 1993-2008 played a total of 1,021 combined games (and counting, since Austin Romine is in that group).
Inside Yanks’ accidental discovery of Brett Gardner, an anomaly and coup
New York Post | Jun 10