- Full name David Lee Adams
- Born 05/15/1987 in Margate, FL
- Profile Ht.: 6'2" / Wt.: 205 / Bats: R / Throws: R
- School Virginia
- Debut 05/15/2013
Drafted in the 3rd round (106th overall) by the New York Yankees in 2008 (signed for $333,000).
View Draft ReportRanked as the No. 67 prospect in the 2005 draft by BA, Adams lasted until the 21st round, when the Tigers took him, because of a strong commitment to Virginia. He followed through on the commitment with the expectation that he would be the successor to Ryan Zimmerman at third base, though he has spent most of his time at second instead. After productive freshman and sophomore seasons at Virginia and in the Cape Cod League, Adams seemed to be on his way to possible first-round consideration. But he has had a disappointing junior year, batting .281--more than 100 points lower than his sophomore season. A gap-to-gap hitter with occasional power, Adams profiles as a second baseman at the pro level as well. He's an experienced hitter with an advanced approach and has a good track record of hitting with wood, though he has an unorthodox swing and scouts are unsure if it will play at the next level. In the field, Adams is fairly athletic and has the potential to be average defensively. He's also regarded as a good all-around baseball player with advanced instincts.
Organization Prospect Rankings
Adams injured his right ankle in May 2010, which threw a wrench into the Yankees' proposed acquisition of Cliff Lee from the Mariners. As New York and Seattle tried to rework the deal, the Rangers swooped in and scooped up Lee. What was originally diagnosed as a high ankle sprain proved to be a fracture that proved frustratingly slow to heal. Adams missed the rest of 2010 and played in just 27 games in 2011. He wound up spending another month on the disabled list with a neck injury, but was healthy from mid-May on. Adams has a plan at the plate, works counts and has an effective two-strike approach. He has the solid power to produce 15-20 homers a season. Never fast, Adams now has well below-average speed. He has lost the quickness to play second base and played almost exclusively at the hot corner in the final six weeks of the season. He has enough arm strength and had played there a bit before getting hurt. His intangibles are a positive. With Alex Rodriguez's Yankees future in doubt, Adams could be an stopgap solution. He's headed for Triple-A in 2013 and will be on call if free-agent signee Kevin Youkilis--who hasn't played 130 games in a season since 2009--gets banged up.
Though Adams has played in just 68 games during the last two seasons, New York still protected him on its 40-man roster in November. As senior vice president of baseball operations Mark Newman said, "I haven't seen a guy yet have his career end because of a broken foot." Adams' injured himself sliding into second base in May 2010. He was initially diagnosed with a high ankle sprain, and it wasn't until July that doctors discovered a broken bone at the joint where his right foot meets the ankle. The Mariners used the injury as a pretext to back out of a trade that would have sent Cliff Lee to the Yankees for a package that included Adams and Jesus Montero. Lee went to the Rangers instead and Adams has hardly been seen since. He played one game at Tampa last April, then sat out for two months before a rehab stint in the Gulf Coast League. He returned to high Class A in late July but didn't last three weeks before pain returned and New York shut him down. When healthy, Adams is an offensive second baseman who has arm strength and the ability to turn the double play well. He has solid gap power and enough juice to project to hit 10-15 homers annually. He has played some third base in the past, and it remains to be seen if his injury problems will diminish his already fringy range at second base. He might lose a step from his below-average speed as well. The Yankees want to keep him at second base, but the main priority at first will be for him to remain healthy. He'll head to Double-A when he's ready in 2012.
Adams had an eventful 2010 to say the least. He got off to a fast start in Double-A before injuring his right ankle while sliding into second base in late May. Initially diagnosed with a high ankle sprain, he found out in late July that he had a broken bone at the joint where the foot meets the ankle. A ligament had detached and pulled some bone off with it, and he had to have the foot immobilized, ending his season. In between, Adams was involved in the Yankees' bid to acquire Cliff Lee from the Mariners. Seattle cited his injury as one reason it pulled out of a deal that would have included Jesus Montero in favor of a trade with the Rangers. Adams was an attractive trade piece because he has good power for a middle infielder. He drives the balls to the gaps and could hit 15 homers on an annual basis. He doesn't stride in his swing but has enough strength to stay balanced and drive the ball. Some scouts think his modest bat speed could compromise his power at higher levels. With the exception of his plus arm, Adams' other tools are all average or fringy. His arm helps him excel at turning the double play, but his range is limited at second base, which is why he has played some third base in the past. He does have good hands, which helped him go 36 games without an error last year. Adams has to get healthy and regain the agility he had before he got hurt. His spring performance and Corban Joseph's presence will determine whether Adams starts 2011 in Scranton or back in Trenton.
Adams has been a prospect dating back to his high school days in Florida. A 21st-round pick of the Tigers in 2005, he spurned them to attend Virginia, where he started most of his three seasons at second base. He had draftitis in 2008, hitting .286 as a junior after batting .372 as a sophomore, and didn't quite snap out of his funk until his first full pro season, when he led the system with 40 doubles and slugged .498 after a midseason promotion to high Class A. Adams needed mechanical adjustments to his swing, which the Yankees made in instructional league after his 2008 pro debut. Hitting coordinator James Rowson adjusted his exaggerated load, allowing Adams to unleash his bat speed and improve his balance. He showed excellent gap power and could have average home run power as he learns to put backspin on the ball. Adams played mostly second base last year, but he could move to third base because he has a plus arm and the Yankees have a glut of second basemen. He's a fringe-average runner and his range is a shade below average for second, though he does turn the double play well. Adams will play in Double-A in 2010.
Best Tools List
- Rated Best Strike-Zone Discipline in the New York Yankees in 2011