It's no surprise that the New York Yankees are in the thick of the American League East race midway through the season, but it's never too soon to look at the prospect the team has in the farm system.
Here's a look at the Yankees' Top 10 prospects:
Jesus Montero C
The ninth overall prospect on MLB.com's Top 50 prospect list, the 21-year-old catcher has one of the best bats in the minors and is making a case for a spot on a MLB roster. In 65 games of Triple-A ball this year, Montero is batting .282/.338/.392 with five home runs and 26 RBI.
Gary Sanchez C
The 18-year-old catching prospect has better defensive skills than Montero and could develop into an everyday starter in the big leagues. In 51 games for the Single-A RiverDogs, he's batting .251/.329/.433 with seven home runs and 28 RBIs.
Manny Banuelos LHP
The 20-year-old lefty has the Yankees excited about his potential. Banuelos has excellent control of his fastball to go along with a good breaking ball and changeup. In 69.1 innings with the Double-A Trenton Thunder, he's 3-1 with a 3.38 ERA and 69 strikeouts.
Dellin Betances RHP
With a fastball in the mid-90s and outstanding break on his curveball, Betances was finally healthy in 2010 and flashed the potential that the Yankees were excited about when they drafted him in 2006. Betances is 4-3 with a 2.37 ERA and 71 strikeouts in 64.2 innings.
Austin Romine C
The third catching prospect on this list, Romine is a better defender than Montero and is considered by some to be the more likely every-day catcher in the big leagues. He also has pretty good pop in his bat, in 49 games of Double-A ball Romine is batting .295/.356/.410 with four home runs and 32 RBIs.
Andrew Brackman RHP
The 2007 first-round pick had Tommy John surgery immediately after being drafted and has since worked his way into the deep rotation of the Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees. Brackman is 2-6 with a 7.71 ERA and 46 strikeouts in 58.1 innings.
Hector Noesi RHP
Noesi made his way into the Triple-A rotation at the end of last season and has one major league win so far this season. The 24-year-old righty is 1-1 with a 3.92 ERA and 11 strikeouts in 20.2 innings pitched. In the majors, Noesi is 1-0 with a 3.74 ERA and 10 strikeouts in 21.2 innings.
Slade Heathcott OF
The left-handed hitter was one of the better high school players in the 2009 draft, and has the speed and defensive skills to be an excellent outfielder. In the minors in 2011, Heathcott is batting .279/.347/.437 with five home runs and 17 RBIs.
Adam Warren RHP
With good control and placement on his pitches, Warren could provide quality innings as a third or fourth starter on a major league rotation. In 15 starts with Triple-A Scranton, Warren is 6-2 with a 2.87 ERA and 63 strikeouts in 94 innings.
David Phelps RHP
Another pitcher in the Triple-A with excellent control, Phelps has a career record of 31-8 in the minors. With the injuries to the Yankees pitching staff, Phelps could be called up to the majors to help out the back end of the rotation. In 14 starts Phelps is 4-6 with a 3.38 ERA and 74 strikeouts in 85.1 innings.