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2019 Minor League Updates
1 year ago  ::  Apr 03, 2019 - 6:52AM #21
Posts: 66,015

Yankees trying something new with top pitching prospect Domingo Acevedo

Seven seasons later, the Yankees are experimenting with Domingo Acevedo.

The big right-hander, who began his hike up the team’s organizational ladder in 2013 as a starter, is now a reliever, Double-A Trenton manager Patrick Osborn announced Tuesday at Media Day.

“Domingo Acevedo has been moved to the bullpen, will pitch on a schedule and mostly in two inning stints,” the first-year Thunder manager told reportersof the team’s 23rd best prospect, according to MLB.com. “Still a major priority guy for us.”

At 6-foot-7 and 250 pounds, Acevedo always has looked the part of a reliever, complete with an overpowering fastball that has touched the triple digits. But he hasn’t stayed healthy long enough to emerge as a legitimate option, though he was briefly called up and placed on the 40-man roster last season.

Acevedo, 25, was ranked as the team’s fourth-best prospect as recently as last year, but another season when he couldn’t stay on the mound long enough sent his stock tumbling. He threw just 69 1/3 innings last season between Trenton and Low-A Staten Island, missing significant time with arm soreness and a blister, a season after he set his career high with 133 innings pitched.

"Leave the gun. Take the cannoli."
1 year ago  ::  Apr 03, 2019 - 9:53AM #22
Posts: 66,015

The Yankees prospects poised for breakout seasons

Antonio Cabello and Clarke Schmidt are just two of many Yankee prospects on the cusp of breakout seasons

The amount of talent the Yankees’ farm system has produced in recent seasons is nothing short of remarkable. The Yankees likely won’t graduate too many prospects this year, but it appears the pipeline of talent has slowed, not stopped. The next wave of Yankee prospects is most definitely on its way.

Every year it seems a handful of prospects have breakout seasons and not every breakout season ends in a big league promotion. Last season, we saw Deivi Garcia and Jonathan Loaisiga emerge from relative obscurity to top Yankee prospects. Only Loaisiga got the call to the bigs, but I think it’s safe to classify their respective 2018 seasons as breakout years.

A handful of players in the Yankees’ lower levels seem poised to take similar steps in 2019. Clarke Schmidt, Antonio Cabello, and most of the Charleston RiverDogs’ pitching staff are my picks for breakout candidates. Here’s why:

Clarke Schmidt probably has the most name recognition as the Yankees’ first round pick in the 2017 MLB Draft, but since draft day, Yankee fans have been waiting on Schmidt. Prior to the draft, Schmidt had Tommy John surgery, and rehabbing the injury prevented him from making his professional debut until last June.

Schmidt threw a handful of promising innings this year, showing all four of his pitches and hitting 96 mph. FanGraphs noted his stuff lacked the consistency it once did. However, that’s not atypical of a pitcher returning from surgery. Schmidt will begin his first full professional season at High-A, and a big year wouldn’t be altogether surprising to see.

Tommy John recovery timelines are never certain, but now more than 18 months removed from surgery, Schmidt’s stuff ought to be back or very close to it. Schmidt’s previous experience at a premier college baseball program coupled with a four-pitch arsenal should be a recipe for success against High-A hitters. As a former first-rounder, a strong season will most certainly turn some heads, and 2019 could be the year Yankee fans to stop waiting on Schmidt.

The Yankees hoarded international bonus pool money in 2017 in hopes of landing Shohei Ohtani. When that didn’t work out, some of that money went to Antonio Cabello, and right now, it looks like a great investment. In a limited debut, the outfielder proved to be quite the jack of all trades.

Cabello doesn’t rate as below average in any aspect of the game, and he put that on display in the Gulf Coast League last year. In just 40 games, Cabello collected 44 hits, and 18 went for extra bases. He walked nearly as a much as he struck out and showed some speed. It’s a small sample, but Cabello did all this at just 17 years old, nearly three years younger than the average Gulf Coast League player.

An offseason shoulder surgery might slow Cabello down a bit, but he’ll no doubt be on the rise this season. The Yankees did not assign him to an affiliate for Opening Day, so it figures he’ll be in extended spring training for the next few months. A future assignment to Short Season-A Staten Island seems like a safe bet, and if all goes well, it wouldn’t be unreasonable to see Cabello with Low-A Charleston by the end of the year.

The conversation around Cabello is just beginning. Even at 18, he’s on the cusp of some top-100 prospect lists. FanGraphs expects him to be on their 2020 top-100 but didn’t rule out a mid-2019 top-100 spot. Cabello’s age means we’re still a few years away from seeing him push for a big league spot, but 2019 might end up a vital year in his development.

Okay, so picking the most of the Charleston RiverDogs’ pitching staff is probably cheating, but their staff is too exciting to narrow down to one player. Roansy Contreras, Luis Gil, and Luis Medina stick out as the biggest names that will begin the year at the level, but Tanner Myattand Matt Sauer are exciting too. One of the Yankees’ next big arms is likely in this group of players.

Contreras, Medina, and Gil have the loudest tools and for that reason, are the most notable names in this list. Contreras is the furthest along in his development and already had something of a breakout at this level last season. Another step forward with his command could make for a really big year.

On the other hand, Medina and Gil are new to the level and both own fastballs that are simply unreal. Both sit in the upper-90’s and possess spin rates around 2550. In the big leagues, those kind of numbers would land them near the top of the statcast leaderboard.

Unfortunately, neither owns even average command right now, but both are reportedly making strides. Still, they’re far from MLB-ready. Gil had a few innings at Charleston last year, but this is the first time both pitchers will begin the season at the level. With some continued improvements, these guys have the tools to start putting up big time numbers.

The Yankees’ system is chock-full of high-ceiling, low-floor prospects. The players on this list are no exception. Schmidt has the ceiling of a 3rd or 4th starter, but he hasn’t thrown many innings as a professional. Likewise, Cabello is still just 18 years old. The Charleston pitchers all need much better command. These players might not end up having breakout years, but these guys are far from last chance prospects. With some improvement, the prospect spotlight might soon shine on any one of these players.

"Leave the gun. Take the cannoli."
1 year ago  ::  Apr 03, 2019 - 1:44PM #23
Posts: 2,281

Apr 1, 2019 -- 3:12PM, BigGuy wrote:

Mar 30, 2019 -- 11:21AM, Joeybagadonutz wrote:

I'm moving to Tampa in 2 weeks, looking forward to seeing Davei Garcia. 


My daughter and her husband just bought a condo in Tampa near the riverwalk. That place is being built up like crazy, lots of money being invested.

It will be interesting to see if there will be money to be invested in a new Rays stadium. They are having trouble finding a site, as well as having questions about who will pay for its construction.

1 year ago  ::  Apr 03, 2019 - 4:00PM #24
Posts: 6,160

Tomorrow's games:

AAA -- SWB at Buffalo, 2:05 PM (TBD)

High A -- Tampa at Lakeland, 6:30 PM (TBD)

A -- Charleston at Columbia, 7:05 PM (Roansy Contreras)

1 year ago  ::  Apr 04, 2019 - 10:44PM #25
Posts: 32,868

DotF: Clarke Schmidt outpitches Casey Mize on Opening Day

The 2019 season is now really underway. Thursday was Opening Day down in the minor leagues. Baseball is officially in full swing. Here are some notes before we get to the performances:

  • OF Trey Amburgey, 3B Mandy Alvarez, and IF Wendell Rijo were added to the Triple-A Scranton roster, the team announced. They’re the corresponding moves to Clint Frazier, Tyler Wade, and Thairo Estrada being summoned to the big leagues.
  • RHP Brady Lail is still in Tampa dealing with an injury, Triple-A Scranton manager Jay Bell told Conor Foley. Not sure what the injury is, exactly, and there’s no word on a timetable for his return. This explains why Lail was not an Opening Day roster.
  • RHP Justin Wilson, last year’s 23rd round pick, is fully healthy after missing most of the last two years with Tommy John surgery, according to his Twitter feed. He was a bit of a sleeper going into the draft last summer.

Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (8-3 loss to Buffalo) since it’s Opening Day, here are the full lineups and pitching staffs as per DotF tradition

  • LF Trey Amburgey: 3-4 — excellent Triple-A debut for the 2015 13th rounder
  • DH Mike Ford: 1-4, 1 RBI, 2 BB — got picked off first
  • 3B Gio Urshela: 1-4, 1 2B, 1 K — I thought he might get the call instead of Estrada so the Yankees could go heavy on defense, but they’re effectively doing that with Wade, so whatever
  • 1B Ryan McBroom: 1-4, 1 K
  • RF Zack Zehner: 0-4, 3 K
  • C Kyle Higashioka: 1-4, 1 R, 1 2B — thus begins year five in Triple-A
  • SS Gosuke Katoh: 0-4, 2 K, 1 E (fielding) — Triple-A debut for the 2013 second rounder … he’s spent a full season at each level as he climbs the ladder, which is pretty old school
  • CF Matt Lipka: 2-4, 2 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 2 K — first Triple-A homer since 2016
  • 3B Mandy Alvarez: 0-3 — Triple-A debut for the 2016 17th rounder
  • LHP Gio Gonzalez: 4 IP, 8 H, 8 R, 8 ER, 3 BB, 3 K, 1 HR, 7/2 GB/FB — 45 of 76 pitches were strikes (59%) … there’s time for three more starts before his April 20th opt-out, and they’ll have be much better than this for the Yankees to consider keeping him
  • RHP Adonis Rosa: 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 3/2 GB/FB — 15 of 20 pitches were strikes
  • RHP David Sosebee: 2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 4 K, 1 WP, 2/0 GB/FB — 26 of 40 pitches were strikes (65%)

The Double-A Trenton Thunder begin their season tomorrow. RHP Trevor Stephan will be their Opening Day starter.

High-A Tampa Tarpons (4-3 loss to Lakeland in ten innings)

  • CF Pablo Olivares: 0-4, 1 K
  • SS Diego Castillo: 0-4, 1 K, 2 E (both throwing)
  • 2B Oswaldo Cabrera: 1-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 K
  • DH Dermis Garcia: 2-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 K — OF Tyler Hill pinch-ran for him in the ninth
  • RF Isiah Gilliam: 1-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 K
  • 1B Steven Sensley: 2-4, 1 RBI, 2 K
  • C Donny Sands: 0-4, 2 K, 1 E (throwing) — a broken arm limited him to only 28 games last season
  • 3B Chris Hess: 1-3, 2 K, 1 HBP
  • LF Rashad Crawford: 0-4, 1 K — a year ago he was hitting leadoff for Trenton, now he’s hitting ninth for Tampa
  • RHP Clarke Schmidt: 5 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 9 K, 3/3 GB/FB — 46 of 65 pitches were strikes (71%), and he had a four-strikeout inning in the fourth … there were two errors behind him, so he wasn’t perfect … he outpitched Tigers RHP Casey Mize (5 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 8 K), the No. 1 pick in last year’s draft, so that’s pretty cool … I’m looking forward to a full year of healthy Schmidt
  • RHP Rony Garcia: 3.1 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 4 K, 1 HR, 1 WP, 4/2 GB/FB — 41 of 65 pitches were strikes (63%) … a bunt single in the eighth inning broke up the combined no-hit bid, which is pretty lame … looks like this is a piggyback situation more than a straight move to the bullpen
  • RHP Brooks Kriske: 1 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 3 BB, 1 K, 1/0 GB/FB — eight of 14 pitches were strikes (57%) … two walks were intentional as he set up force plays with the extra-innings tiebreaker rule

Low-A Charleston RiverDogs (2-1 win over Columbia)

  • CF Brandon Lockridge: 0-4, 3 K
  • RF Josh Stowers: 0-3, 1 BB, 2 K, 1 CS — organizational debut for the prospect in the Sonny Gray trade
  • C Josh Breaux: 0-4, 2 K — last year’s second rounder
  • 1B Eric Wagaman: 2-4, 1 R, 2 K
  • 3B Nelson Gomez: 1-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 K, 1 E (throwing)
  • LF Isaiah Pasteur: 0-3, 2 K — he has loud tools and is a definite sleeper
  • DH Mickey Gasper: 0-3, 1 RBI
  • 2B Kyle Gray: 2-3, 1 2B, 1 RBI — had a terrible pro debut last season, but last year’s 14th rounder has some pop and might be more than a fringe prospect/organizational guy
  • SS Eduardo Torrealba: 0-2, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 E (throwing)
  • RHP Roansy Contreras: 5 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 6 K, 1 WP, 5/1 GB/FB — 57 of 77 pitches were strikes (74%) … he’s going to play the entire season at age 19, so reaching Triple-A before his 21st birthday is a distinct possibility
  • RHP Aaron McGarity: 4 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 4 K, 7/1 GB/FB — 40 of 50 pitches were strikes

The Short Season Staten Island YankeesRookie Pulaski Yankees, and two Rookie Gulf Coast League Yankees teams begin play in June.

1 year ago  ::  Apr 04, 2019 - 10:56PM #26
Posts: 6,160

Buffalo 8 SWB 3

Trey Amburgey (LF) -- 3 for 4

Mike Ford (DH) -- 1 for 4, RBI

Gio Urshela (3B) -- 1 for 4, 2B

Ryan McBroom (1B) -- 1 for 4

Zack Zehner (RF) -- 0 for 4

Kyle Higashioka (C) -- 1 for 4, R, 2B

Gosuke Katoh (SS) -- 0 for 4

Matt Lipka (CF) -- 2 for 4, 2 R, HR, 2 RBI

Mandy Alvarez (2B) -- 0 for 3

Gio Gonzalez (L 0-1) -- 4.0 IP, 8 H, 8 ER, 3 BB, 1 K

Adonis Rosa -- 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K

David Sosebee -- 2.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 K's

Record: 0-1

Next Game: Tomorrow at Buffalo, 6:05 PM

1 year ago  ::  Apr 04, 2019 - 11:04PM #27
Posts: 6,160

Lakeland 4 Tampa 3 (10 inn.)

Pablo Olivares (CF) -- 0 for 4

Diego Castillo (SS) -- 0 for 4

Oswaldo Cabrera (2B) -- 1 for 4, R, 2B

Dermis Garcia (DH) -- 2 for 4, R, 2B, RBI

-- Tyler Hill (PR/DH)

Isiah Gilliam (RF) -- 1 for 4, R, 2B, RBI

Steven Sensley (1B) -- 2 for 4, RBI

Donny Sands (C) -- 0 for 4

Chris Hess (3B) -- 1 for 3

Rashad Crawford (LF) -- 0 for 4

Clarke Schmidt -- 5.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 9 K's

Rony Garcia -- 3.1 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 4 K's

Brooks Kriske (L 0-1) -- 1.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 3 BB, 1 K

Record: 0-1

Next Game: Tomorrow at Lakeland, 6:30 PM

1 year ago  ::  Apr 04, 2019 - 11:09PM #28
Posts: 6,160

Charleston 2 Columbia 1

Brandon Lockridge (CF) -- 0 for 4

Josh Stowers (RF) -- 0 for 3, BB

Josh Breaux (C) -- 0 for 4

Eric Wagaman (1B) -- 2 for 4, R

Nelson Gomez (3B) -- 1 for 4, R, 2B

Isaiah Pasteur (LF) -- 0 for 3

Mickey Gasper (DH) -- 0 for 3, RBI

Kyle Gray (2B) -- 2 for 3, 2B, RBI

Eduardo Torrealba (SS) -- 0 for 2, BB

Roansy Contreras (W 1-0) -- 5.0 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 6 K's

Aaron McGarity (SV 1) -- 4.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 K's

Record: 1-0

Next Game: Tomorrow at Columbia, 7:05 PM

1 year ago  ::  Apr 04, 2019 - 11:10PM #29
Posts: 6,160

Tomorrow's games:

AAA -- SWB at Buffalo, 6:05 PM (Nestor Cortes)

AA -- Trenton at Erie, 6:05 PM (Trevor Stephan)

High A -- Tampa at Lakeland, 6:30 PM (Deivi Garcia)

A -- Charleston at Columbia, 7:05 PM (Matt Sauer)

1 year ago  ::  Apr 05, 2019 - 6:41AM #30
Posts: 66,015

Schmidt, Mize Duel as Tarpons Fall in Lakeland on Opening Day

Tampa Takes No-No into 8th, Flying Tigers Walk-Off in 10th

RHP Clarke Schmidt tallied a career-high nine strikeouts over five shutout innings in his Tampa Tarpons debut on Opening Day against the Lakeland Flying Tigers on Thursday night at Publix Field at Joker Marchant Stadium. (Mark LoMoglio)

By Nick Flammia / Tampa Tarpons | April 4, 2019 11:55 PM

Tampa, Fla. -- The 2019 Florida State League season opened on Thursday and RHP Clarke Schmidt gave the Tampa Tarpons a nearly perfect performance, but the Lakeland Flying Tigers scored late and prevailed in walk-off fashion, 4-3 in 10 innings.

A game-winning RBI single by Brady Policelli sent many of the crowd of 1,675 home happy from Publix Field at Joker Marchant Stadium.

RHP Casey Mize matched Schmidt as both starting pitchers completed five scoreless innings. Both know each other from their days in the SEC, when Mize (1st overall pick by Detroit in 2018) pitched at Auburn University and Schmidt (16th overall pick by New York in 2017) pitched at the University of South Carolina.

The only baserunner allowed by Mize was an opposite-field single by Steven Sensley with two outs in the fifth. Mize tallied a career-high eight strikeouts while throwing 47 of 68 pitches for strikes.

Lakeland did not have a baserunner until the fourth, when Luke Burch struck out on a pitch in the dirt but reached safely on an errant throw by catcher Donny Sands .

Schmidt struck out the next three batters, turning in a four-strikeout inning.

A throwing error by shortstop Diego Castillo allowed A.J. Simcox to reach in the fifth, but Schmidt got a pair of ground balls and a strikeout to strand the runner.

Schmidt logged a career-high nine strikeouts while issuing no hits or walks over five frames, throwing 46 of 65 pitches for strikes.

Tampa opened the scoring off Lakeland reliever Burris Warner in the seventh, when Dermis Garcia singled and scored on an RBI double by Isiah Gilliam. Sensley followed with a base hit to left, scoring Gilliam for a 2-0 lead.

RHP Rony Garcia reliever Schmidt in the sixth and retired the first six batters he faced, carrying a no-hitter into the eighth.

Burch broke the bid by reaching on a bunt single to begin the eighth. One out later, Joey Morgan walked, and Cole Peterson hit a ground ball to shortstop. Castillo made a diving stop, but threw wide of second, allowing a run to score.

Garcia limited the damage, retiring the next two batters to end the frame. Tampa got the run back in the ninth off RHP Ethan DeCasterwhen Oswaldo Cabrera and Dermis Garcia hit back-to-back doubles, giving the Tarpons a 3-1 lead.

Controversy ensued in the bottom of the ninth. After a leadoff walk by Kody Clemens, a deep fly ball was hit down the left field line by Daniel Reyes. The ball flew over the fence and was ruled "fair" by home plate umpire Jude Koury.

Many of the Tarpons on the field became visually upset and manager Aaron Holbert pled "foul ball." After a conference between Koury and umpire J.C. Velez, the call was upheld.

A 3-3 tie entered extra innings and Gilliam began the frame at second base. RHP Will Vest (W, 1-0) entered and got a pair of strikeouts while stranding a pair of runners to keep the score knotted.

RHP Brooks Kriske (L, 0-1), who completed the ninth, returned for the 10th. Lakeland loaded the bases with an intentional walk, sacrifice bunt and second intentional walk, and Policelli ended the game with a base hit up the middle.

The series continues in Lakeland on Friday at 6:30 p.m. RHP Deivi Garcia (0-0, -.--) will make his season debut against LHP Tarik Skubal (0-0, -.--). Live play-by-play audio will be available on the Tampa Tarpons Baseball Network.

"Leave the gun. Take the cannoli."
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