I will not even try to sound like an expert with Jose Campos.
He was traded to the New York Yankees in a deal that wasfinalizedyesterday that sent Jesus Montero and Hector Noesi toSeattlein return for Campos and Michael Pineda.
From what I have heard the 6'4" 19-year-old righty can already hit 98 mph on the radar gun.
While Campos has a long way to go before he reaches the majors, he does have ace potential.
Not many teenagers with his size and velocity have pinpoint accuracy—see Banuelos, Manny—but Campos can, and if he can transition well to the higher minor league levels, he may even reach Double-A by the end of 2012 if all goes well, then he can be a dominant pitcher at the major league level.
2011 Stats (Double and Triple-A): 129.2 IP, 6-7, 3.75 ERA, 1.55 WHIP, 71 BB, 125 K
Manny Banuelos showed everybody he was the real deal by posting a 2.20 ERA in Spring Training 2011. On top of that, future Hall of Famer Mariano Rivera called him the best pitching prospect he'd ever seen.
The 20-year-old lefty was promoted to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre this season and showed flashes of brilliance, but was inconsistent and had control issues. Banuelos will start the season in Triple-A but expect him to be in New York when rosters expand in September.
Banuelos used to have excellent control, but his recent control issues stem from his jump in velocity over the last year. He should have his pinpoint control back within no time.
He has three plus pitches—a fastball, slider and changeup—that should propel him to stardom wants he reaches the majors.
Banuelos wasrecently rankedas the second best left-handed pitching prospect, behind only Matt Moore, byMLB.com.
He projects to be a No. 1 or No. 2 starting pitcher in the majors in a few years.
Jeff Reese: It is unfortunate that Jose Campos suffered a minor injury during spring training as it delayed his professional debut until short season ball began in June. Had he been rewarded with a full season assignment at Clinton, the buzz surrounding him would likely be much louder. As it is, we Campos fans will just have to take solace in the fact that next season will be when he becomes a household name among minor league followers (hint: that should be read with a hint of nonchalant overconfidence). With an excellent frame that still has room in which he can add weight, Campos delivers the ball from a low effort 3/4 arm slot. The fastball jumps out of his hand, settling in around the mid 90s and featuring late run and sink. It is an overpowering pitch that produces more than its share of weak ground balls when put in play. He controls the pitch very well and already shows some ability to command it to each quadrant. His height and propensity to keep it low in the zone gives it excellent downward plane. The secondaries are much further behind, but show promise in spurts. The curve ball is a 11-to-5 breaker that has sharp break but loses shape often, while the change-up features hard downward movement. Both are far from consistent at this point, and his control of each is not in the same vicinity as with his fastball. On the mound, Campos is still learning the art of holding runners as his pickoff move is slow and mechanical, and he's not particularly quick to the plate – trifling concerns at this stage. Improving on his secondaries will be the key to unlocking the top of the rotation starter within, but even in this nascent stage of their development, the ability to pitch off of his fastball should allow him to move quickly (exempli gratia, Juan Nicasio).
Al Skorupa: Campos will be entering the 2012 season the same age as many of last year’s top high school pitchers and he has a lot of similarities to a high draft pick prep pitcher. As you mention Jeff, Campos has a very projectable body type and a plus, hard fastball. The command of his fastball is really what sets him apart. Yes, the secondaries need to be firmed up but I’m optimistic that will happen. He’s shown us flashes of where the CB and CU can go... it’s a lot harder to teach this kind of fastball command and usage to a teenager. It wouldn’t bother me nor would it be unusual to see the flaws Campos has in a top American prep pitcher. I look forward to Campos exploding onto the scene in 2012.
Conor Dowley: This is a big young man with a fastball to match. Hitting the mid-90's, what impresses people the most about him is not just the velocity of it, but his command of the pitch as well. Some have said that he was over-reliant on it in his stateside debut last year, but in all honesty, the quality of the batters Campos spent most of his time facing needed no other pitch to get themselves out with.
The fastball could help Campos move quickly through the minors, but at just 19 years old, his secondary pitches still need development. His changeup is possibly the pitch with the most potential of his secondary arsenal, pairing with a curveball that Campos has largely used to keep hitters off-balance. Both pitches could be quite good pitches for him eventually, should they continue to develop as they have so far.
The most impressive thing to me after seeing Campos last year is his mound presence. The man never seems to feel any pressure at all. Big lead, big deficit, tie game, bases loaded or empty, he rarely shows changes in his composure. And when it comes to big games, such as a "Campos Court" promotion night his team held late in the season, he simply feeds on the energy and rises to the occasion.
There's a very real chance in my mind that Campos could become the best player in the trade that brought him to the New York Yankees organization. Michael Pineda and Jesus Montero are incredibly impressive players, but it wouldn't surprise me in the slightest if he surpasses them. It'll take a lot of work and some luck, but the chance is very much there.
Let’s be honest, the likelihood of Brett Gardner, Curtis Granderson, and Nick Swisher patrolling the outfield of Yankee Stadium together in 2015 is highly unlikely. Even more highly unlikely is that three homegrown Yankee prospects would be patrolling the outfield together, but that’s what we’re talking about here today! Well, kinda…
In the lower minors, the 2015 outfield is taking shape. While the players that could make up this trio are still a few years away from making an impact, it’s never too early to begin discussing their progress, and possible future contributions at the major league level.
If you don’t already know about Mason Williams, Ravel Santana, and Slade Heathcott, you’re about to get a formal introduction. We’ll get to the more intimate pleasantries after the jump.
As I stated above, the chances of the Yankees trotting out an entirely rookie homegrown outfield is virtually non-existent when you consider the club’s enormous budget and lust for immediate results. A much more realistic scenario is one rookie infiltrating a Yankees starting outfield with a pair of already established stars. Luckily, the Yankees are gambling with three lottery tickets in Mason Williams, Ravel Santana, and Slade Heathcott, with the hopes of striking it rich with at least one player.
Let’s take a closer look at each, profiling them in their likely position at the major league level.
Mason Williams, CF: A natural centerfielder, Williams immediately impresses with his plus speed (80 on the 20-80 scouting scale) and defensive instincts. While his arm is only average, it shouldn’t be much of an issue due to his elite speed and ability to cut balls off before they become trouble.
Offensively, Williams has the most impressive collection of tools in the system. His quick bat allows him to make good contact through the zone, and his frame should produce at least average power once he refines his hitting approach and adds muscle. At this stage, he’s more of a slap hitter who relies on his speed to wreak havoc on the bases, an approach that should change once he starts getting more loft on the ball by using more of his lower body. With more base-running polish, he’ll become a 40-50 steal threat at the major league level.
Williams reminds me a great deal of Austin Jackson from a tools standpoint, and could be the homegrown centerfielder many envisioned Jackson to be prior to the Curtis Granderson trade. He’ll make the jump to Charleston this year, so we’ll see how full-season baseball treats him for the first time.
Ravel Santana, RF: While he currently patrols center field, there is a good chance he slides over to right with Mason Williams in the fold. This actually plays right into his skill set, as Santana possesses a cannon for an arm (70 grade) that will play beautifully in right.
Where Santana differs from Williams is with the bat, as he flashes a very different set of tools, starting with plus raw power. It’s easy to envision Santana turning into a 20-30 homer guy with his bat speed and ability to lift the ball. That said, he’s the most raw of the Yankee outfield prospects, and still has much to learn in the pitch recognition department. He currently struggles with good breaking balls, but the hope is that he’ll outgrow this with more at-bats and further instruction. He’s a plus runner, but it will be interesting to see how he bounces back following a gruesome ankle injury that ended his ’11 campaign.
He may not start the season on time as he continues to recover from his ankle setback, but should start off at Staten Island of the New York-Penn league. He’s one of the guys I’m most excited about taking a trip to see this summer.
Slade Heathcott, LF: He got off to a hot start at Charleston last season before cooling and eventually being slowed once again by injuries, something that has plagued him through his career thus far. Currently a centerfielder, many envision Heathcott sliding over to left due to his shoulder woes, as two surgeries on his throwing shoulder could limit his throwing ability. The shame of this is that his defensive range is outstanding, and may not be fully utilized due to his injuries.
What the Yankees love about Heathcott is his make-up and gritty style of play. The club compares him in-house to Brett Gardner, and I also feel he compares well to Dustin Pedroia and Jason Kipnis in this regard. His energy is infectious, making him a true clubhouse guy that teammates and fans immediately gravitate towards.
Heathcott shows many of the same tools as Williams, with the major difference being the reckless style he plays the game with. His body (as long as it stays in one piece) should allow him to develop into a double-digit home run threat, and improved awareness on the bases should yield premium results in the stolen base department. He’s a classic raw tools player on the cusp of breaking out or crashing and burning. The Yankees are hoping his elite athletic ability begins allowing these tools to turn into usable skills on the field.
As I mentioned above, like any prospect, these guys are lottery tickets. Many get tossed in the trash, some yield a modest payout, and a rare few provide a substantial reward. If I were to place a wager on who I felt would be the most likely to land in the most profitable group, it would be Williams, followed by Heathcott, and finally Santana.
If the Yankees are able to develop one of these prospects into a productive major leaguer worthy of producing on a championship caliber team, that’s a huge win for the organization. At the very least, these players may turn out to be trade bait for an already established star, making their development within the organization similarly crucial.
What do you think of the 2015 future Yankees outfield? Who booms and who busts? What big name stars could be patrolling the outfield alongside our homegrown talent? Let’s take the discussion to the comments and hash this thing out.
Background A Texas kid from Haltom City — just outside of Dallas — Nuding wasn’t much of a pro prospect coming out of high school. He went undrafted after graduating in 2008, then joining the upstart baseball program at Weatherford College, a two-year school. Nuding served as the Coyotes closer as a freshman, then played in the Texas Collegiate League during the summer. He was drafted by the Pirates in the 37th round of the 2009 draft, but did not sign and returned to school for another year.
As a sophomore in 2010, Nuding established himself as the best pro prospect on the staff. He moved into the rotation and appeared in 16 games, striking out 65 with 35 walks in 78 IP. He led all starters with a 2.19 ERA, then again pitched in the Texas Collegiate League after the season. Baseball America (subs. req’d) considered Nuding the 37th best prospect in Texas prior to the 2010 draft, and the Yankees made him their 30th round pick, the 925th overall selection. He signed relatively late for $265k — after the Yankees got a longer look at him in summer ball — foregoing his commitment to Texas Tech.
Pro Career Nuding appeared in just one game after signing in 2010, allowing two run in two innings with the rookie level Gulf Coast League Yankees. He was assigned to Low-A Charleston to open last season, and he pitched to a 4.48 ERA (4.26 FIP) with 82 strikeouts (7.51 K/9 and 19.5 K%) and 44 walks (4.03 BB/9 and 10.5 BB%) in 98.1 IP spread across 20 starts. He suffered an unknown but minor injury in late-July, and he was back on the mound in early-August. He made three rehab appearances in the GCL, then finished the season with one start for High-A Tampa. All told, Nuding struck out 91 batters (7.56 K/9and 19.7 K%) and walked 45 (3.74 BB/9 and 9.8 BB%) in 108.1 IP in 2011.
Scouting Report The only player in the organization more physically imposing than Nuding is Dellin Betances. The right-hander is listed at 6-foot-4 and 250 lbs., but he’s probably an inch or two taller and 10-20 lbs heavier. His fastball can cash the check his frame writes, living in the 93-96 range with big time boring action in on righties. He’s been clocked as high as 98. Neither of Nuding’s offspeed pitches — a low-80′s slider and changeup — are consistent yet, but both have shown put-away potential at times.
Nuding’s delivery is a bit herky jerky and rough around the edges, leading to occasional control problems. He does pitch aggressively though, with a willingness to pound the zone when he’s in sync. The Yankees have used him as a starter so far in his career, but Nuding is likely to wind up a power reliever unless both the slider and changeup make some big strides. He could end up touching triple-digits as a one-inning bullpen guy. Here’s the only video I could find, though it doesn’t appear to be working at the moment.
2012 Outlook The Yankees will send Nuding back to High-A Tampa to open the season, where he will continue to take the ball every five days as a starter. He’ll get another year before shifting to the bullpen permanently, at the very least.
My Take The Yankees have built up this hilariously deep cache of power relievers with their late-round picks, and Nuding fits the bill perfectly. He isn’t the best prospect of the bunch, but he has the best fastball and arguably the most upside. I do love these big hard-throwing relief types even if they have less than stellar control and underwhelming secondary pitches because you can be an effective big league reliever with a huge fastball and just a show-me breaking ball. Grant Balfour, Matt Thornton, and Joel Hanrahan are doing it right now. Nuding has some movement on his fastball, and that will help a little. I don’t expect him to be all that great this coming season as a starter, but it’s all about getting experience and working on things. He’s a little too good for a sleeper, but don’t be surprised if he’s getting much more attention in like, 18 months.
"Jay Z got him a big raise, but he also got him a 30-day vacation – it’s called October," --Pete Rose
n the our Stealth Bomber series, we talk to players in the farm system who aren't yet on the New York radar, but hope one day to be so.
After being drafted by the Yankees in the 13th round of the 2010 draft, Tyler Austin was hit by a pitch that broke his wrist, forcing the Georgia product to sit out the rest of the Rookie League campaign after only two games. He returned in 2011 to absolutely slay opposing pitchers, hitting a combined .354/.418/.579 between the Gulf Coast and Staten Island clubs. At Staten Island, he registered the first 6-hit game in the NY-Penn League since 2007, which earned him a NoMaas MLPW Award. Sensei John Kreese sat down with the 20-year old to talk about his debut season and his outlook for 2012.
Sensei John Kreese: Let's start with last season. You straight killed it at the plate. What worked and why was it so easy for you?
Tyler Austin: I put in a lot work before and after games, during practice - there was an approach I wanted to carry with me into the game, taking the same swing from batting practice into the game. I didn't want to rush anything, just stay relaxed.
SJK: At each level, both at Gulf Coast and Staten Island, you were basically the best hitter on each of those teams. That's really impressive considering some of the names on those clubs, including a bunch of 1st and 2nd rounders. Were there other teammates that impressed you or stood out from your perspective?
TA: Yeah definitely - Cito Culver, Ben Gamel, Mason [Williams], Dante [Bichette Jr], Branden Pinder -- I love watching all those guys play. Everybody plays hard. But those guys really stand out to me. Those guys are unreal.
SJK: How's the wrist?
TA: It's perfectly fine. No problems at all whatsoever.
SJK: How would describe the pitching at the lower levels? Do you feel like the hitters are more advanced?
TA: I don't think there's any advantages either way. The pitchers are just as good. Velocity is still the same. Obviously, when you move higher, the pitchers can spot better, throw more breaking pitches for strikes - but I don't think there's an advantage, honestly.
SJK: What did your offseason look like?
TA: Just stayed in the gym, stayed in the cages - staying in shape and keeping the swing I had during the season. Other than that, I went to few concerts, hung out with my girlfriend...
SJK: So in other words, you're not sending girls any signed baseballs like Derek Jeter does?
TA: HAHA. No, there's none of that. I had a few guys tell me about that story. I couldn't believe it. He's actually been down here [in Tampa] lately hitting and taking groundballs, stuff like that.
SJK: So have you met Jeter?
TA: No, I've never gone up and talked to him, or anything like that. He's always busy every time I see him. I don't want to interrupt his sessions.
SJK: Have you met anyone on the big club or in the front office?
TA: Andruw Jones, Joba Chamberlain...just a few guys, not too many.
SJK: Have you met Cashman yet?
TA: I have not.
SJK: Have you received word yet that you're starting the year in Charleston (Low-A)?
TA: I haven't heard anything yet, none of us really have. We probably won't hear until one or two days before we leave.
SJK: Really? They don't tell you where you're going until Spring Training is just about over?
TA: Yeah, that's how it was last year.
SJK: Let's back up a bit, you were a catcher in high school and the Yankees squashed that idea from the get-go. How soon after you were drafted did you realize the Yankees wanted to change your position?
TA: Well, they drafted me as an outfielder, so I knew the catching thing would probably be out the window. I didn't mind it. I had a feeling that it would be gone with any team that took me.
SJK: Why's that?
TA: Just because I hadn't caught that long. I played other positions in high school a little bit. I just figured I wouldn't catch after I was drafted.
SJK: You played 1B and 3B last season. Do you have a preference?
TA: Not really, either one I'm comfortable with. But now, I'm back in the OF a little bit, so it's probably going to be left field, right field, third, first...mixed all the way up this year.
SJK: What do you think you need to work on defensively?
TA: Every aspect of it, there's plenty of room for improvement.
SJK: What do your strengths are as a hitter?
TA: I try to put the ball the other way. It helps me make contact better and helps me stay through the ball a lot longer than most people would.
SJK: What about working a pitch count and taking a walk?
TA: I feel like I'm getting better at that. I'll definitely take a walk.
SJK: How about those stolen bases? You didn't get caught once (18 for 18).
TA: I take a good lead and have a good idea of the count to go in, especially with the guys hitting behind me this past year. I knew they would see the majority of the breaking balls. I picked a count and just went when I could.
SJK: Alright Tyler, that's all I got. We appreciate it, had a good time interviewing you. Best of luck this season and hopefully we can talk again.
This is an ankle. More specifically, this is David Adams' ankle (and part of his knee).
Why is said ankle pictured? Well, besides the fact that the rest of the picture would likely bring forth boos and hisses from our resident ACC heads, it's because Mr. Adams' ankle holds a bit of an odd place in recent Yankees history. I say odd mainly because Adams isn't exactly the most well known or one of the top players in the system, yet he may have altered the current state of the Yankees without ever stepping on the field anywhere near the big club in the Bronx.
Before the conjectured narrative gets sent into overdrive, some background...
Adams was drafted in the 21st round out of high school by the Detroit Tigers, but decided to take his talents up the east coast to the University of Virginia instead of signing. He showed a little bit of everything during his time with the Cavs. (my penance to the ACC folks) He hit for average, showed an ability to get on base, decent power and speed and a strange propensity for being hit by pitches.
(Tables are split because hooray SBN formatting)
His sophomore season he led the Cavs in average and finished second on the team in OBP, slugging and total bases. Not bad for a middle infielder.
Boosting his stock despite a comparatively down junior season, the Yankees picked up Adams in the 3rd round of the 2008 draft (106th overall). His debut in short season ball with Staten Island didn't exactly turn any heads (297 PA, .257/.350/.393, 118 wRC+), but Adams began to find his stride in his follow up campaign. After power outage plagued first half of 2009 (304 PA.290/.385/.394, 128 wRC+, 0 HR with A-Charleston), he mashed his way through the second half at higher level (265 PA, .281/.360/.498, 148 wRC+, 7 HR with High-A Tampa.
Could he keep it up after jumping up to Trenton to start 2010? (twss?) Yup. He picked up right where he left off, posting a.309/.393/.507 line with a 148 wRC+ and 3 HR through the first 39 games of the season.
Then came the injury.
The injury is the really the only way to describe it. It wasn't just an injury, it was the injury. One that would create waves for seasons to come.
That last sentence was high school level and incredibly lame...moving on.
With the trade deadline approaching and the pitching staff taking a nosedive, in their pursuit of the mythical #2 starter, the Yankees set their sights on the Mariners' Cliff Lee. The deal was all but done. Cliff Lee and his family was packed and ready to move to New York City and the trio of Jesus Montero, Zach McAllister and David Adams were headed west. Well, that is until they decided to do those pesky medicals screenings.
At the time of the proposed deal, Adams was on the shelf with an ankle injury he suffered in late May. Even with the lingering injury, at the time described as a sprain, the Mariners were ready to go through with the deal. When the x-rays came back...doom.
No deal. Adams' sprain was actually a fracture. The Yankees tried to save the deal but the Mariners moved on. Cliff Lee to Texas.
If I haven't sufficiently bored you to death with stuff you already know, good news, there was actually a point to all of the build up.
You may not know who Edward Lorenz is, but you may be familiar his theory on the unpredictability of weather known as the butterfly effect. In essence, Lorenz, an assistant professor in MIT's meteorology department during the 1960's, posed the question of whether a butterfly flapping its wings in Brazil could change conditions in the atmosphere in such a way that a tornado would touch down in Texas.
The short answer: no. The (relatively) more complex answer: no, but maybe yes. We can't say with any manner of certainty because of the incredible number of variables involved.
Why is this relevant for any reason other than to prove I know how to work Google Scholar? Consider David Adams as the butterfly in Lorenz's theory and think about all the events that happened after the failed trade, including the recent Michael Pineda-Jesus Montero swap. Could what appeared to be a minor injury to a middle of the pack prospect have been the catalyst that, among other things, helped land Pineda?
With Lee out of the picture, the Yankees cobbled together the rotation for the rest of the season with hopes, prayers and Ivan Nova. Right away, does Nova even get a chance to audition with the team if the trade goes through? With CC, Lee, Pettitte, Burnett, Hughes and Vazquez's dead armed veteran presence already in place, it would seem unlikely we see Nova until spring training save for a meaningless spot start when rosters expanded.
But of course, Lee was also set to become the prize free agent that coming winter. We know the details and I'm sick of talking about Cliff Lee, so I'll try to be brief. If Adams' ankle holds up and the trade goes through, it would stand to reason the odds of the Yankees being able to re-sign him would have been much better. Lee signed with the Phillies; Cashman pouted for awhile then picked Freddy Garcia and Bartolo Colon off the scrap heap, again hoping for the best. As luck would have it, they really did get the best out of a situation that was little more than a swan dive of a high cliff with a small pond below.
The pitching held up well enough through 2011, but going forward, hopes and dreams probably weren't going to be enough. That would bring us to where we are now and how we've come full circle. Steep prices for the trendy names on the market left the Yankees adrift in a sea of mediocre outlooks, still hunting for their white whale.
Enter Michael Pineda from out of nowhere.
Almost two years after David Adams torpedoed a deal to send Montero to Seattle for the Mariners' #2 starter...Montero is sent to Seattle for the Mariners' #2 starter.
Since the butterfly effect is part of the larger picture of the chaos theory, it only makes sense to completely break from current line of narrative to go off on a tangent and visit one of the other teams affected by Adams' wing flap. With Adams in the system, do the Mariners stay the course with Dustin Ackley at second base? The team had just moved Ackley to second at the start of the 2010 season after he had played just about everywhere except second at UNC, so would the move have stuck? A serious look ahead, but no injury means no Justin Smoak for the Mariners. Do they make a stronger run at Prince Fielder with no one to block him at first base?
It's obviously impossible to prove everything, or anything really, that happened after Adams' injury caused the chain of events that followed; and that's kind of the point. The beauty of the butterfly effect is that there's no way of knowing or quantifying just how much of an effect a simple flap of the wings can have on the world. Could be nothing, could change things in such a way that the apocalypse is triggered.
It's just something interesting to think about. How a guy with less than 40 games played in AA could both save Jesus and cast him off. How he may have changed things in such a way that brought the Yankees not just one young stud pitcher in Pineda, but possibly another in Nova. How he somehow managed to save himself from the Rule 5 draft with a 40-man roster spot.
Background A graduate of Stewardson-Strasburg High School outside of Champaign, Illinois, Wetherell starred as both a pitcher and position player for the Comets. He lettered all four years and was thrice named to the All-Conference Team, plus he played basketball and made the honor roll all four years. Wetherell wasn’t much of a pro prospect however, so he went undrafted in 2008 and ended up at Kaskaskia College, a two-year school. He threw 55.2 IP and led the Hilltoppers to the Great Rivers Athletic Conference Championship, posting a 4.04 ERA with 50 strikeouts and 18 walks. After again going undrafted, he transferred to Western Kentucky.
The New York Yankees traded right-hander A.J. Burnett to the Pittsburgh Pirates today in exchange for two prospects, reliever Diego Moreno and outfielder Exicardo Cayones. Here is a look at who the Yankees got.
Exicardo Cayones, OF: Cayones is 20 years old, born October 9th 1991. A left-handed hitter and thrower, Cayones was signed out of Venezuela in 2008, earning a $400,000 bonus, as part of Pittsburgh's attempt in recent years to invest more in Latin America. His career got off to a good start in the Venezuelan Summer League in 2009 with a .302/.396/.424 mark, but he hit just .263/.369/.362 after moving up to the Gulf Coast League in 2010. A disastrous 2-for-32 beginning in the 2011 New York-Penn League sent him back to the Gulf Coast League, where he hit .293/.389/.427. Cayones has a keen eye and has posted solid OBPs, but he hasn't produced much power and doesn't run well enough to play center field. He is a marginal prospect at this point.
Diego Moreno, RHP: Moreno is another product of Pittsburgh's scouting effort in Venezuela, signing as a free agent in 2006. A right-handed hitter and thrower born July 21, 1986, Moreno throws very hard, hitting 98 MPH on his best days and consistently in the 94-95 range. He also has a good slider and is frequently overpowering, posting consistently strong K/IP ratios. He fanned 45 in 45 innings last year between High-A Bradenton and Double-A Altoona, and he posted a terrific 69/8 K/BB in just 46 innings at those two levels in 2010. However, the results sometime seem less than the sum of the parts, he hasn't been consistently effective in Double-A, and his makeup has been questioned. He profiles as a middle reliever if he can put everything together, and his component ratios imply that he has sleeper potential. His arm strength makes him worth a flyer.