Kyle Roller plays a position currently blocked by two different players for his Major League parent club, the New York Yankees.
He is already 25-years-old and not considered a top 20 prospect in his own minor league system. As an eighth round pick for New York in 2010, he’s not considered an elite talent.
Still, for his current franchise with an anemic offense and little production from the DH spot, middle of the lineup or first base since Mark Teixeira‘s return, Roller is a bat New York may watch more closely for the next couple of seasons.
To be direct, Teixeira is not going anywhere and the Yankees are currently using Lyle Overbay in the outfield just to hold onto his bat, so even if Tex were to get hurt, New York already has a first base solution on the MLB roster.
It’s worth noting Roller is hitting .282/.369/.849 and has launched nine homers, 26 extra base hits and leads number three prospect, Tyler Austin, albeit four years younger, in batting average and on base percentage for Trenton.
Roller has struck out 70 times in 227 AB, which is about a 200K pace in a full season, two levels below MLB pitching, but if he continues to get on base and hit the ball hard he should at least be considered for a AAA call-up.
Players like Slade Heathcott, Mason Williams and Rob Segedin are all guys with better numbers or much higher ceilings, but all of them are also hurt. Roller is healthy and rolling and one of those players good to have around in the organization in the event he can become another Shane Spencer.
With this organization this year and next, the Yankees should have plenty of need for a role like that if Roller can make more contact and keep progressing. Otherwise, he can fill a AAA spot if someone like Zoilo Almonte, Corban Joseph or Ronnier Mustelier gets called up at some point.