- Full name Robert Daniel Refsnyder
- Born 03/26/1991 in Seoul, South Korea
- Profile Ht.: 6'0" / Wt.: 205 / Bats: R / Throws: R
- School Arizona
- Debut 07/11/2015
Drafted in the 5th round (187th overall) by the New York Yankees in 2012 (signed for $205,900).
View Draft ReportBorn in South Korea, Refsnyder went to Laguna Hills (Calif.) High, where he was teammates with Royals lefthander John Lamb. Refsnyder bats and throws righthanded and has a 6-foot, 200-pound frame. Scouts like his bat and think he could be an average hitter. He's always hitting--he holds his high school record for the highest career batting average and is a career .341 hitter over his three years with the Wildcats. The problem scouts have is that Refsnyder just doesn't profile as a corner outfielder in pro ball because he has a flat swing that's geared more for doubles than home runs. He's an average runner with an average arm, so scouts who like the bat are interested in getting Refsnyder to move back to second base, a position he played in high school.
Organization Prospect Rankings
The Most Outstanding Player in the 2012 College World Series, when he was Arizona's starting right fielder, Refsnyder signed for a bonus of $205,900. The Yankees shifted him to second base in instructional league that year, and he's played just nine games in the outfield since. He made his major league debut in July, returned to the majors in September and was on the roster for the wild-card loss to Houston. Refsnyder profiles as an offensive-minded second baseman. He worked hard in 2015 at Triple-A and benefited from the presence of former Giants infielder Nick Noonan on the roster. He's got a smooth swing geared for line drives and power that could play to fringe-average in the future, and some evaluators project even more than that once he gets a chance to play regularly in Yankee Stadium. He's unlikely to be an average defender, but has worked enough to make himself playable at the position. Some scouts see him in the mold of former Mets second baseman Daniel Murphy. Refsnyder will be given every chance in 2016 to win the everyday job, with only new acquisition Dustin Ackley standing in his way. If he doesn't get the nod, he's likely to head back to Triple-A to continue to work on his defense.
Refsnyder was the Most Outstanding Player in the 2012 College World Series while playing right field for Arizona. The Yankees signed him for $205,900, then moved him to second base. A short swing and excellent plate discipline help make Refsnyder a strong hitter. He's balanced at the plate, has good hand-eye coordination and has quick hands that help him catch up to good velocity. He sprays line drives all over the diamond. He's got power enough for double-digit home runs, but he's a pure hitter first before a power hitter. He's an average runner underway but a little slower out of the box. Refsnyder's bat profiles better if he can handle second base, where his lack of experience shows in his inconsistent actions, footwork and poor angles to balls. He has made strides turning double plays and reading hitters' swings, and some evaluators see him as a future fringe-average-toaverage defender whose bat will help him play there. Multiple evaluators have compared Refsnyder to the Mets' Daniel Murphy, though he's a righthanded hitter. Barring a big move in free agency, he'll have a chance to win the big league second-base job out of spring training, but it's more likely he heads back to Triple-A for more seasoning.
Much like Peter O'Brien, Refsnyder is man without a position. He played right field at Arizona, but the Yankees shifted him from outfield to second base in 2013, and he received mixed reviews for his work. Refsnyder has enough athleticism to become an average defender at the position in time, but he needs plenty of repetitions. He's a smart, above-average runner, but not a burner, who led Yankees full-season players in stolen bases (23). He's an extremely patient hitter, as evinced by his 84 walks against 82 strikeouts, who recognizes spin well and knows when and how to go with a pitch. Refsnyder sprays line drives all over the field and has the ability to keep the head of the bat in the zone for a long time. He doesn't get much lift, so he's not going to hit more than 10-12 home runs going forth. Refnsyder's modest power fits the second base profile better than the corner-outfield profile, so taking root at the keystone is crucial. He's headed for Double-A Trenton in 2014.
Born in South Korea, Refsnyder went to Laguna Hills (Calif.) High, where he was teammates with Royals lefthander John Lamb. Refsnyder bats and throws righthanded and has a 6-foot, 200-pound frame. Scouts like his bat and think he could be an average hitter. He's always hitting--he holds his high school record for the highest career batting average and is a career .341 hitter over his three years with the Wildcats. The problem scouts have is that Refsnyder just doesn't profile as a corner outfielder in pro ball because he has a flat swing that's geared more for doubles than home runs. He's an average runner with an average arm, so scouts who like the bat are interested in getting Refsnyder to move back to second base, a position he played in high school.
Minor League Top Prospects
The 2012 College World Series' Most Outstanding Player, Refsnyder stood out on a modest Scranton/Wilkes Barre roster. He joined the team in mid-June and displayed an ability to get on base while limiting his strikeouts and increasing his power in just his third season in the minors. Refsnyder's short, powerful stroke from the right side is polished, and when combined with a keen batting eye, he projects to hit for average and get on base at a high rate. His average power would play at second base, though the position might not suit the converted outfielder defensively, as he lacks fluidity and must improve his double-play pivot skills. "He has to improve on his footwork and groundball reads," a scout with an NL club said. "He's a work in progress, but the bottom line is he can hit."
If Refsnyder is not the most advanced hitter in the Yankees system, he's one of the finalists. Armed with a polished offensive game coming out of Arizona, he blitzed EL pitchers with a barrage of line drives in the early portion of the season before getting bumped to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Refsnyder drew raves from evaluators for his ability to hit line drives to all sectors and also for possessing premium bat speed. He's got pop, but it's more of the gap-to-gap, doubles variety than true home run power. The Yankees and instructor Carlos Mendoza have worked tirelessly with Refsnyder, an outfielder in college, to hone his chops as a second baseman, where he's improved but is still crude technically. He briefly returned to the outfield at midseason, but he returned quickly to the infield to keep working in the hope that he could take over the position for the Yankees at some point in 2015.