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Random Minor League Notes: 2012 Edition
6 years ago  ::  Mar 25, 2012 - 7:53AM #141
Posts: 65,399

Yankees Q&A: Dellin Betances, pitcher

Published: Sunday, March 25, 2012, 5:15 AM

Yankees.JPGView full sizeYankees pitcher Dellin Betances throws against the Boston Red Sox in a spring-training game this past week.

It would be impossible to have a more impressive spring than Dellin Betances has had to this point. The 6-8 right-hander, who turned 24 on Friday, has allowed only five hits and no runs in eight Grapefruit League innings for the Yankees. But the native New Yorker who now lives in Teaneck knows his season is going to begin at Triple-A, where he’ll try to prove he deserves another call-up to The Show. And he hopes this time the move is permanent.

1. How long have you lived in New Jersey?
I’ve lived in Jersey for the last four years. I bought my parents a house in 2007, after I was drafted and signed in 2006. My parents love it in Teaneck because it’s quiet, but it’s still close to the city. It’s a 10-minute drive to Washington Heights, where I was born and where we still have a lot of family.

2. When you were called up last September, did you live at home?
Yeah, I lived at home. Not many guys get to sleep in their own bed when they get called up to the big leagues. It was pretty cool.

3. You were born and raised in the Bronx?
I was born in Washington Heights, but went to high school in Brooklyn. I moved from the Bronx to the Lower East Side of Manhattan at the age of 10. But I went to high school in Brooklyn and played summer ball in Brooklyn, so I’m from a little bit of everywhere.

4. When you’re home, where do you like to go? Any favorite places?
There’s a place in Washington Heights called La Casa Del Mofongo that I like a lot. Some good Spanish food. Rice, beans, chicken. When I’m home, I love going there.

5. Were you a Yankees fan growing up?
The Yankees were my team. My godfather took me to a lot of games when I was younger. I loved Mariano Rivera, Andy Pettitte, Derek Jeter and Bernie Williams. You could go down the list of players, they were great guys to watch, winning all those championships.

6. Where did you sit in the Stadium?
Bleacher creature all the way. That was my spot. I wouldn’t trade that spot for anything. I would wear a hat, not a jersey. But I would always try to represent. I didn’t play baseball until I was 10, so from age 6 to 10 I went to a lot of games. Eat a hot dog, watch the game. It was great.

7. What’s it like being 6-8 and looking down at a hitter?
I feel like I have an advantage. Being this tall, it’s not easy as a hitter to see a guy 6-8 standing on top of the mound. That’s probably scary for the hitter. But tall pitchers have more they’ve got to keep together mechanically, so that’s the challenge.

8. What was your first game at the Stadium like, last September against the Tampa Bay Rays?
It was nerve-racking, but a great experience. Coming in from the bullpen to pitch in front of friends and family. It was amazing. I didn’t do as well as I wanted, gave up a couple of runs, but it was still a thrill. Not many people get to pitch in Yankee Stadium.

9. What is it going to take for you to get another call-up?
There’s a lot of competition around here. I need to become more consistent with my mechanics and delivery if I want to take that next step. That’s my focus. I need to learn to take my stuff from the bullpen to the game. I am going to keep working hard.

Jeff Bradley: jbradley@starledger.com; twitter.com/JerseyJBradley

"Leave the gun. Take the cannoli."
6 years ago  ::  Mar 27, 2012 - 8:25PM #142
Posts: 26,701

Reviewing the Yankees 2011 int’l signings

Baseball’s new Collective Bargaining Agreement is going to put a serious damper on international spending, capping teams at $2.9M this year before shifting to a sliding scale in the future. To more you win, the less you get to spend. The Yankees have traditionally been one of baseball’s powerhouses in Latin America, and last year they dropped close to $3M on international prospects. Baseball America’s Ben Badler published his AL East spending review yesterday, looking at the players the Yankees and their division rivals signed in 2011. You do need a subscription to read the article.

The Yankees largest international signing last year was 17-year-old Dominican third baseman Miguel Andujar, who received $750k. “Andujar doesn’t have one huge carrying tool or do anything flashy, but he doesn’t have a glaring weakness either,” wrote Badler. “He’s a right-handed hitter with good bat speed, a sound swing and a good approach to hitting for his age. His hands are quick and he could hit for average and power. Andujar is an average runner and a solid defensive third baseman.” Expect him to spend this year in the Dominican Summer League before making his stateside debut in 2013.

Andujar headlines the position player crop, which also includes a trio of Dominican prospects — shortstop Abi Avelino ($175k), outfielder Wascar Rodriguez ($150k), infielder Victor Rey $135k) — and one Colombian catcher (Alvaro Noriega at $175k). Rodriguez offers big raw power while the others do their best work on the defensive side of the ball. Noriega does enough things well that he should remain behind the plate long-term and is likely the best all-around prospect of the bunch. Interestingly enough, the Yankees also signed catcher Dan Vavrusa for $10k out of the Czech Republic. He appears to be the team’s first real foray into Europe.

Right-handers Moises Cedeno (Panama), Luis Severino (DR) and Giovanny Gallegos (Mexico) highlight the pitching crop. Cedeno didn’t turn 16 until late-August, making him the youngest player to sign with any of the 30 clubs last year. He signed for just under $355k and already shows three pitches. The 16-year-old Severino signed for $225k and has touched 95 with a power slider. Gallegos, 20, was part of a package deal similar to one that brought Al Aceves and Manny Banuelos to the Yankees in 2007. He is currently rehabbing from Tommy John surgery, but when healthy he’s sat in the low-90s with two breaking balls. Gallegos signed for an even $100k.

Of course, the Yankees just landed what figures to be their most significant international prospect before the new spending restrictions kick in this July. That would be 21-year-old right-hander Rafael DePaula, who was finally able to secure a visa last week. DePaula still has to pass a physical before his long-awaited $500k deal is official, but he’ll instantly become one of the team’s better pitching prospects despite missing so much development time due to a suspension and his visa delay. He and his mid-90s gas could see time with a full season affiliate this summer.

Four of the Yankees top ten prospects originally signed as international free agents, not including trade import Jose Campos. The new spending limitations will impact the Yankees more than most clubs because they’ve relied on the international market to land elite talents like Jesus Montero, which usually aren’t available to them late in the draft. The worldwide appeal of the Yankee brand works in their favor, but there will be a much greater emphasis on pure scouting now.

6 years ago  ::  Mar 27, 2012 - 8:26PM #143
Posts: 26,701
Minor Moves: Duff, Corona, Mattingly released

By Via The NY PostJosh Norris, the Yankees have released minor league RHP Grant Duff, IF Reegie Corona, and OF Preston Mattingly. Duff, 29, has thrown just 46.2 IP over the last two seasons while battling arm problems. He threw really hard and was one of the team’s better relief prospects back in the day. The 25-year-old Corona hasn’t played since breaking his arm in 2010. A no-hit, all-glove type, he managed to spend two full years on the 40-man roster and was even a Rule 5 Draft pick of the Mariners back in 2008. Never really understood that whole thing. The Yankees signed Mattingly — Don’s son — in January and he never played in an official game for them.

6 years ago  ::  Mar 27, 2012 - 8:36PM #144
Posts: 26,701

Who Are Your Favorite Yankees Prospects For 2012?

March 23, 2012; Tampa, FL, USA; New York Yankees outfielder Mason Williams (85) drives in a run in the seventh inning against the Minnesota Twins at George M. Steinbrenner Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE

Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE - PresswireMore photos »

4 days ago: March 23, 2012; Tampa, FL, USA; New York Yankees outfielder Mason Williams (85) drives in a run in the seventh inning against the Minnesota Twins at George M. Steinbrenner Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE

With the 2012 season fast approaching, here are three prospects I'm particularly interested in following this upcoming season.

Ben Gamel, OF- His brother Mat is finally getting his chance to play everyday in Milwaukee, and the two do share a few similar qualities. Both Gamel brothers show a knack for hitting, which is their main calling card. Ben has displayed solid swing mechanics thus far, and it should only be a matter of time before he adds more power. While the two home runs he hit last season are uninspiring, take note of the 19 doubles in just 190 at-bats for Staten Island. Some of those doubles are going to begin clearing the wall with time, especially as he begins refining his pitch selection abilities. Defensively, the Gamel boys aren't the greatest, but Ben earns the nod over his brother in this department. His defense in right field is passable, which is a significant step up from brother Mat, who's the equivalent of a lawn ornament in the field. There is some real potential here, and considerable room for growth.

Nik Turley, LHP- A broken hand cut his '11 campaign short, but what he showed at Charleston was certainly no joke (82.1 IP, 2.51 ERA, 82/21 K/BB). The key to Turley's success was a step forward with his command, as he dramatically cut his walk rate down from his first year in the minors (4.23 at Low-A in '10, 2.30 at Single-A in '11). He has a workhorse frame (6-6, 230 lbs) that should stand up to a heavy workload, and may allow him to add a few more ticks on his low-90s fastball. A strong 2012 season could catapult him into the organization's Top 10 prospect discussions.

Jake Cave, OF- He'll be making his professional debut this year after being drafted in the sixth round of last year's draft. Cave offers solid power potential and already possesses the ability to spray line drives all over the field. He's a bit of an unknown, but one with considerable upside. The club will give him a look in center field, although it's more likely that he ends up in a corner outfield spot down the line considering the organizational depth already in front of him at the position. You never know though, he could explode on the scene and push past everyone, which is something Yankee fans would surely be happy to see.

On an unrelated note, I just released my All-Rookie Team for the upcoming fantasy baseball season over at Yahoo! Sports. While no current Yankees made the list, one former one did: Jesus Montero. Here is what I had to say about him:
UTL- Jesus Montero, Mariners: He’ll qualify at catcher pretty early in the year, but for now, has no position in the Yahoo! game. Montero showed solid skills during his September call-up (.328/4/12), and will be a key cog in the Mariners lineup this year. He should hit for a solid average immediately, and the possibility is there for him to hit 20 or more homers this year, even in spacious Safeco Field. To me, he’s the fantasy bat that will return the most value during the 2012 season.

6 years ago  ::  Mar 28, 2012 - 8:36PM #145
Posts: 26,701

Quick movers in the Yankees minor league system in 2012


This season minor league games will actually begin before the major league games. This is a new and interesting concept, as has not been set up like this for at least the past few seasons. It’s not going to change anything as far as the season goes except that it’s likely Triple-A will end sooner with respect to September call-ups, freeing up more players for the honor. Other than that, it will also mean that we will see players get promoted to the next level at an earlier date this year. This is not groundbreaking, but it just means there will be exciting decisions made sooner.

This article will examine which players the Yankees organization could be sizing up early on for quick promotions. I will pick one for each level, while mentioning some others who could end up quick risers. I will start with the lowest level, which will also be the hardest because it’s very difficult to predict who will even be there to start the season let alone who will be promoted.

The GCL doesn’t start until June 18th, so there is a lot that could happen between now and then that would preempt certain players from even appearing at that level. There could be injuries or promotions before the season even starts. Regardless of that, some players who begin the season in the GCL will be promoted to higher levels.

The easy target is Hayden Sharp, but since I just did an interview with him I’ll choose someone else. One of the other young pitchers expected to start in the GCL this year is Rookie Davis. William “Rookie” Davis was drafted in the 14th Round and is a 6-foot-3, 235-pound right handed pitcher drafted out of high school. He was committed to ECU before signing with the Yankees. Yankees drafted him as a pitcher and last season he went 9-0 with a 1.02 ERA at his high school.  He also struck out 136 in only 61.1 innings. Over his four seasons in high school Davis was 25-4 with a 1.67 ERA and 415 strikeouts in 209.1 innings.

Davis’ fastball gets up to 89-92 mph and can sit 90-91. His curve ball has some shape can be an average pitch at times already. At instructs his fastball reached up to 95 mph, and he developed his changeup. His changeup is now pretty devastating. He has extremely good control for his age. If he exhibits the type of control he is capable of then Staten Island, and even Charleston are not out of the question by the end of the season. It’s also possible given his polish that he starts at Staten Island. If so I apologize in advance for not having a crystal ball.

Others who could move quickly if they start in the GCL are Jordan Cote, Daniel Camarena, Joey Maher, Chaz Hebert (aka all of the high school talents drafted in the 2011 draft), and Greg Bird (C).

Also starting June 18th is Staten Island, New York’s short season-A affiliate. This is a touch easier, although still unpredictable since the season doesn’t start until later. Isaias Tejeda had a breakout season last year in the GCL.

Being a catcher buried deep in an organization rich in catchers (especially before the Montero trade), Tejeda didn’t receive much attention early in the season. As time went on and he continued to rake, people started to take notice. By season’s end, it appeared (and still appears) that the Yankees had yet another solid catcher on their hands. He hit .331/.404/.568 in the GCL last season. He hit 6 HRs, 11 doubles, 3 triples, and even contributed 5 SB in 39 games. He is blessed with excellent patience, and a decent feel for playing the game behind the dish.

Tejeda is relatively new to catching, but he shows a lot of potential and already has an average arm and makes quick adjustments. Isaias “The Hata” Tejeda, as I like to call him, hated on pitchers last year in a major way with his powerful, patient stroke. He’s now 20 years old, which is a reasonable age for a kid in Staten Island.

The key here though is that Gary Sanchez will start the 2012 season in Charleston. There is a strong likelihood “The Sanchize” will move to High-A Tampa on the quick. If that should occur, someone will need to fill the void in Charleston. That man could be Isaias Tejeda if he continues to show the hitting prowess he did last year to start the 2012 season in Staten Island. Other candidates to make quick moves, if they are in Staten Island, are Taylor Morton (likely headed to Charleston), Evan Rutckyj, Gabriel Encinas, Matt Duran (also possibly in Charleston), and Justin James.

I just mentioned Gary Sanchez as a likely fast mover in 2012. Because there are so many options though, I am going to talk about another guy who cannot be ignored at this level. Matthew Tracy, at his age, is going to have to move quickly to catch up with his similarly aged counterparts. That said, the Yankees don’t seem to be in any rush to move him along.

Any prospect that’s already 23 in Low-A is going to have get some quick promotions at some point though. Tracy is no exception. He is a pretty big, 6-foot-3, 212-pound lefty who posted some impressive numbers in Staten Island last year.

Tracy looked so good out of the bullpen with his three pitch combo of fastball, curve ball, and changeup that the coaching staff put him into the starting rotation for good. The results? 47.1 IP, 3.04 ERA, 48 K, and 16 BB. His fastball sits in the 92-94 range, and he has a lights out changeup which he can control very well and uses to get outs. His curve ball has improved by leaps and bounds since signing with the organization. His stuff and poise on the mound have already drawn comparisons to Andy Pettitte. While I would fall short of saying he is the next Andy just yet, he has shown some real promise in the early going. Given his age, handedness, and poise, he is my most likely candidate to make a quick entrance and exit from Charleston as soon as he shows he can handle single a hitters.

The River Dogs are a team full of quick moving candidates, including Mason Williams, Branden Pinder, Tyler Austin, Dante Bichette Jr., Phil Wetherell, Ben Paullus, and especially Gary Sanchez. I haven’t came up with an official nickname for Tracy yet, but given that he’ll hopefully be traveling a lot from state to state this year for promotions, I think the name “M-Trac(k)” may be appropriate.

Given the fact that Slade Heathcott is going to start the season on the DL, the most obvious candidate to quickly move from High-A to Double-A is J.R. Murphy. He’s still not a shoe in to start there, as the team may opt to advance him straight to Double-A. It’s more likely, however, that he starts in High-A and ends up moving quickly to Double-A as soon as he starts to drive the ball like last year.

Last season Murphy was slated to start the season at some other position besides catcher. There were defensive concerns, and Gary Sanchez was already there at the same level, so it seemed it was best to move on. Then, something happened. JR Murphy’s defense improved to the point where coaches began to think he could stick at catcher long term.

Given that a solid bat is much more valuable at catcher than elsewhere, it was a no brainer for coaches to give Murphy another shot there. He responded by hitting very well in Charleston for half the season with a .297/.343/.457 batting line, and six homers. He then received a promotion to High-A Tampa. He struggled to adjust at first, but then began to learn how to hit High-A pitchers. Just as he was starting to get the hang of it, he got injured and the Yankees shut him down for the season.

The bat has never been in question, so as long as he holds his own in the field he can fill the void that Austin Romine left in Double-A as soon as he proves he’s ready. If he develops some more power, he could be an exciting option in a year or so for the major league team. Word out of camp is that he is mashing already, so look for it to be a short stay in Tampa for “Murph.” There aren’t a ton of other potential movers in High-A, but the other candidates include Jose Ramirez, Ramon Flores, Nik Turley, Mikey O’Brien, Kyle Roller (if he’s there), and Rob Segedin (if he’s there).

There are a couple of pitchers starting the season at Double-A Trenton, namely Shaeffer Hall and Brett Marshall, who would be in line for a quick promotion to Triple-A if the rotation wasn’t so stacked there. There’s always the chance that they could trade one of those guys to open up some space, or that someone gets injured. I’m not banking on that though, especially given that the return for anyone not named Manny Banuelos or Dellin Betances is likely to be insignificant. That leaves us with David Adams, Corban Joseph, Ray Kruml, Zoilo Almonte, Ronnier Mustelier and Chase Whitley as the remaining candidates for a midseason promotion.

Of these, Raymond Kruml has already been promoted so he doesn’t count, and Corban Joseph & Chase Whitley may start in Triple-A, so I’m going to discount them. I already did an article on Zoilo Almonte. David Adams is my candidate to get promoted midseason. There are a few reasons for this. I really like Corban Joseph, but I think he might need a little more time in Double-A before he’s ready for Triple-A. If he starts on the Empire State Yankees and shows his inexperience, he and Adams could be in for a switcheroo.

After a two year hiatus with a miserable ankle injury, it appears that at the beginning of the preseason David Adams was at 90-95%, meaning he will likely be at 100% soon. We’ve all seen what he can do in the past with the bat, and he can and will force the front office’s hand if he hits that way in Double-A to start the season. He’s not getting any younger at 24 to start the season, and getting value out of him as a prospect may necessitate quick movement. He could easily supplant a guy like Pena as the first call-up in case of a SS, 2B, or 3B related injury. Given his age and the maturity we’ve already seen with the bat, promoting him to Triple-A quickly may be an easy decision. Affectionately known as “DAdams” to BBD Prospects due to his advanced age in comparison to some of his colleagues in Double-A, he’s one of the closest players in this article to contributing at the major league level.

Before the flurry of starting pitcher related moves made be the Yankees recently, I would have said that someone out of the trio of David Phelps, Adam Warren, or D.J. Mitchell would have been the first call-up to major league camp. As things stand today, there are seven starting pitchers ahead of all three of them on the depth chart. That could change as it has become obvious that Cashman is trying to move Freddy Garcia. Even if he is successful in such a move, there is a one pitcher buffer before any of those three will be considered.

Aside from the non roster invitees who are not considered Yankees prospects and would have a good shot at a call-up should an injury occur, the first man to reach the Bronx from the minor leagues will likely be a relief pitcher. I am discounting guys like Ramiro Pena who have already been up and down. My pick for the first call-up is George Kontos. Kevin Whelan got a brief taste last season, but he got a quick hook because he displayed a lack of control while in the majors. Cashman has a tendency to give someone else a try before giving a guy a second try, and Kontos appears ready.

Kontos pitched a whopping 89.1 IP out of the bullpen last season in Triple-A. He had 91 K and walked 26 batters. The ERA was 2.62. Kontos is known for his absolutely filthy slider, and a good low to mid 90′s fastball to go along with it. His control is usually pretty good. If the injury bug should bite the bullpen again, which seems almost inevitable the past few seasons, then he should be the first call up. Whelan and Ryan Pope are the other in house candidates. Cesar Cabral and Clay Rapada are both currently playing their **** off for the last spot in the bullpen. There’s a chance that whichever one loses will somehow end up in Triple-A to start the season at least. If that’s the case, they will probably be the first call-up. Austin Romine is another guy who could be pushed into duty if there’s an injury to Cervelli or Russell Martin.

Midseason promotions can be one of the trickiest sciences for coaches to master. Moving a guy up too soon or waiting too long can damage a player’s development. The goal is to advance players through the system rapidly without sending them to a level they are not ready for. In the past the Yankees have screwed this up in various ways, often rushing prospects along. It seems as though in recent years they have improved their methods. This year it will be fun to see who ends up being a part of the first round of promotions. Trying to predict promotions often results in looking foolish later on, but it’s still fun to think about. Hopefully these players perform to their abilities and show the Yankees that they are ready for the next level.

6 years ago  ::  Mar 28, 2012 - 8:39PM #146
Posts: 26,701

Don't Underestimate the Value of a Relief Prospect

Prospect analysts throughout baseball rarely show the love to minor league relief pitchers.  Now I'm not talking about Spot Starters, or guys that they may convert to the rotation, I'm talking about the pitchers that are strictly short inning relievers.

I've had conversations with people on Scout.com and Baseball America about this topic & the consensus seems to be that their impact is minimal to a team.  Now I can agree & disagree with this notion.  First I can agree that these short relievers do only come in for one, two innings tops.  Also, if you don't have good starting pitching and a respectable offense to get the ball to these short relievers, they won't get a chance to impact the game.

Having said that, it's not the prospect's fault that the rest of the team isn't good enough to maximize his potential to help the team.  Even if the team isn't competent enough to do that, he still has value and can be dealt to another team for someone of his stature is worth.  If a team has a closer prospect that's just dealing but you can't get him to close games due to another Closer on the roster (Think Bard/Papelbon), you still treat him as a Closer prospect & you only deal him if the value you get in return is fair value.  A closer has much more value if you market him as such instead of a 6th or 7th inning reliever.

David Robertson is arguably the heir apparent to Mariano Rivera & he has never even cracked a New York Yankees Top 10 Prospect list.  The highest I've ever seen him was in 2008 & he was at 15.  In 2008 John Sickels had him at 18, behind guys like Jeff Marquez, Damon Sublett, Brad Suttle, and Alan Horne.  Two of those names were starting pitchers (Marquez & Horne) and the other two are position players (Sublett & Suttle).  Marquez was dealt as part of a package for Nick Swisher (Cashman robbed Kenny Williams, loving it).  Alan Horne has been released after having multiple surgeries mixed with bad numbers.  Brad Suttle, I'm not even going to pretend like I know what his story is at this point, & Damon Sublett is long gone.

I understand that position players and starting pitchers have the chance to have a bigger impact on the game but you have to divide them up a bit.  We all know the answer in 2012 but back in 2008 for those like me who follow prospects closely, Robertson was without question going to have a more positive impact on the Yankees then any of those four players.  The very same could have been said about Mark Melancon, who the Yankees never even gave the chance to show what he can do.  Impact relievers like him are not to be used for garbage innings.

Look up what Rafael Soriano's annual salary is then compare that to the cost controlled young relievers throughout baseball & tell me that relief prospects aren't valuable.  Considering the abundance of high impact relievers that the Yankees have in the system, they should no longer be in the market for Free Agent help.

Mark Montgomery, an 11th round pick, burst onto the scene last year with insane strikeout rate (51 in 28.1IP) including a 5 strikeout inning on July 1 against the Rome Braves.  He has a mid 90s fastball and an ungodly slider, which is why he struck out 5 in one inning.  It is so nasty that the Braves could not hit it & Gary Sanchez couldn't catch it.  He pitched in Staten Island & Charleston last season.  I expect him to begin the year in Tampa & end the season in Trenton.  That's the beauty of relievers, they are generally quick movers.

Manny Barreda, a 12th round pick in 2007, was being groomed as a starting pitcher up until last season when he told me that he was being converted to the pen full time.  Manny had good stuff as a starter but reports out of off-season Instructs are that his stuff has spiked significantly.  He is consistently hitting the mid 90s with above average off-speed pitches.  If he can lock down that command, which I think he will, Yankee fans should start tracking this kid because like Montgomery, he has impact potential & can move fast.  I expect him to begin the year in Tampa as well & if he can harness his command, he will move up to Trenton fast because he is a couple years older then Montgomery.

There are a few other guys in the system that I like as well, such as Danny Burawa, Tommy Kahnle, and Branden Pinder.  Mark Montgomery & Manny Barreda are two guys I'm the most high on to impact a bullpen though.

I love the high impact starting pitchers and position players as much as anyone but without a really good bullpen, you're not going anywhere.  It's ironic and amusing to me when analysts don't give credit to these relief prospects but when they are locking down games at the ML level, suddenly they become cheerleaders.

Jump on the bandwagon everyone, there is plenty of room & I welcome you all with open arms.

6 years ago  ::  Mar 29, 2012 - 9:13PM #147
Posts: 26,701

Minor League Notes: Pearce, Double-A, DePaula

Got some miscellaneous minor league notes to pass along…

  • The Yankees have signed Steve Pearce to a minor league deal. Pearce, 28, was once a big prospect for the Pirates but never got it going in the show. He’s a first base/corner outfield type with some right-handed pop. Only 5-foot-11 too. Pearce is a depth pickup, but I have to wonder what this and the Jack Cust signing means for the fed up Jorge Vazquez. [Josh Norris & Chad Jennings]
  • The Double-A rotation to open the season will be Shaeffer Hall, Graham Stoneburner, Brett Marshall, and Josh Romanski. The fifth starter is still being decided, and I have to think Craig Heyer is at least in the conversation. [Norris]
  • Rafael DePaula will start the year in Extended Spring Training, unsurprisingly. He hit 94 during workouts today. [Josh Norris]
  • Corban Joseph has been shut down with some kind of shoulder injury, likely putting him in jeopardy of missing the season opener. The Triple-A squad has enough infielders to survive the loss, but you obviously don’t want to see him get hurt. Kyle Higashioka will also miss about a month with a shoulder problem. [Chad Jennings]
  • The following low-level minor leaguers have been released: LHP Gavin Brooks, RHP Noel Castillo, RHP Cory Cowsert, RHP Joaquin Hinojosa, RHP George Isabel, RHP Ronny Marte, LHP Danny Martinez, and RHP Yobanny Reyes. I liked Brooks as a sleeper back in the day, but injuries ruined him. [Mike Ashmore]
6 years ago  ::  Mar 29, 2012 - 9:14PM #148
Posts: 26,701

Yankees minor league news: DePaula, Adams, Santana, & ManBan

Here are some notes on a few of the Yankees minor leaguers.

  • Rafael DePaula was working out with Charleston this week, a sign that he has passed his physical and is officially a Yankee (Norris).
  • David Adams has been told he will start the season with Double-A Trenton, the same team he started the 2010 season with before his ankle injury (Norris).
  • Speaking of ankle injuries, Ravel Santana returned on Monday and even played in center field. Good to see him back (Norris).
  • Manny Banuelos has added a cutter to his growing arsenal that already includes a changeup, slider, and curve (Kernan).

6 years ago  ::  Mar 30, 2012 - 10:55AM #149
Posts: 65,399

Your first four starters for the Thunder this year are, in order, Hall, Stoneburner, Marshall, Romanski. They're still deciding on the fifth

"Leave the gun. Take the cannoli."
6 years ago  ::  Mar 30, 2012 - 2:24PM #150
Posts: 65,399

  • 2012 Minor League Rosters


    The minor league season is just five days away, and Josh Norris has the full slate of rosters for the four full season affiliates plus Extended Spring Training and players rehabbing from injuries. You’ll notice that the Triple-A rotation is mostly empty at the moment, giving the impression that David Phelps, D.J. Mitchell, and Adam Warren still have a chance to crack the big league roster. Ravel Santana is currently listed under ExST and not rehab, which is good to see.

    As expected, the Low-A Charleston squad is going to be stacked. Gary Sanchez is headed back there to start the season and will headline a lineup that also features Dante Bichette Jr., Cito Culver, Angelo Gumbs, Tyler Austin, Ben Gamel, and Mason Williams. Jose Campos and Bryan Mitchell highlight the pitching staff. I don’t see too many surprises in the rosters other than Evan DeLuca in ExST rather than Low-A, though it does stink that sleeper Matt Tracy is in the rehab group. I was looking forward to seeing him out of the chute.
    · (5) ·

"Leave the gun. Take the cannoli."
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