Yankees prospect Jasson Dominguez during spring training in Tampa on Feb....

Yankees prospect Jasson Dominguez during spring training in Tampa on Feb. 14. Credit: Newsday/Thomas A. Ferrara

LAKELAND, Fla. — Though Jasson Dominguez created quite a bit of hysteria among fans and media during spring training with his at-times-dazzling play, the hyped prospect had about zero chance of leaving camp with the Yankees.

And so what was inevitable from the start of spring training became reality late Thursday night when the 20-year-old, who thrilled the organization with his play, was shipped to minor-league camp after a 9-6 home loss to the Pirates.

“I told him I don't plan on sending him down very often moving forward,” Aaron Boone said Friday morning before the Yankees' 8-7 loss to the Tigers. “But the message is, go continue to build on what’s been a really [good] 12 months for him.”

Dominguez, who climbed three levels in the system in 2022 and finished the year with Double-A Somerset — where he appeared in five regular-season games —  likely will be New Jersey-bound to start 2023.

But no one should be surprised if the switch-hitting centerfielder, whom the Yankees plan to occasionally play in the corner outfield spots as well as in center once the minor-league season begins, makes an appearance in the Bronx by season’s end.

“Last year from spring on, he just continued to get better and better all season long,” Boone said. “I think he’s obviously carried that into spring. Kind of showed all of us that reason to be excited about what his future is.”

Boone said there was more in his message to Dominguez, who went 10-for-22 (.455) with four homers, nine RBIs and a 1.565 OPS in 11 Grapefruit League games.    

“The biggest thing is that message of, [his] first big league camp went really well, he fit in really well. He performed really well,” Boone said. “Now the work doesn’t end. Make sure your focus is going down there and getting after it and continue to get a little bit better at all the small things. We all believe he can be impactful up here. It’s just continuing to gain experience.”

While Dominguez’s demotion was Thursday’s primary story, Friday’s revolved around the club’s newest centerfielder — Isiah Kiner-Falefa.

Kiner-Falefa, who came into camp a long shot to win the shortstop battle that is going down to the wire between Oswald Peraza and Anthony Volpe, made his debut in center Friday afternoon.

“The ball will find you” is among the oldest baseball adages, and it did just that for Kiner-Falefa, whom the Yankees are trying to turn into a super-utility player in the way they have with Oswaldo Cabrera.

The first two batters of the game, Austin Meadows and Jonathan Schoop, lifted routine fly balls to center, and Kiner-Falefa handled them with no apparent issues.

“It was really fun. [Felt] comfortable. Felt like I got tested in every way today, for the most part, said Kiner-Falefa, who is scheduled to start at shortstop Saturday in Dunedin against the Blue Jays.  

The Yankees would like to find a way to carry both Peraza and Volpe — the pair started at second and short, respectively, on Friday — when they leave camp, but a roster reconstruction would need to take place. Such a reconstruction probably would have to include a trade involving Kiner-Falefa and/or Gleyber Torres, and the Yankees have received calls on both.

In the meantime, Kiner-Falefa will continue to move around to different positions.

Kiner-Falefa primarily has been an infielder and catcher in his professional career (he started in center in one Double-A game in 2017), What attributes does he possess that could allow him to play the outfield?

“I think his athleticism first and foremost,” Boone said before Friday's game. “He's just got really good feet. I think he'll take to it well. The biggest thing is getting that glove broken in properly how he wants it and stuff. And then, obviously, just getting some experience out there. I think he'll take to it well, regardless how this day goes, or for several [after]. I think he has the skill set that should serve him well out there.”

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