The Brackman Watch


Andrew Brackman cardMan, it feels like just yesterday we wrapped up the TJ Rehab Watch, and now I’m here introducing you to this year’s Watch already. As the title says, this year we’re going to track the progress of Andrew Brackman, the Yanks’ 2007 first round pick who will finally be unleashed on minor league hitters this season after missing all of last year due to Tommy John surgery. It’s been a long time coming, and hopefully it’ll be worth the wait.

Most of you know what this is all about, but for those of you who latched onto RAB for the first this time offseason, here’s a quick primer: During the season we’ll keep track of two sets of stats for Brackman – his pitching line from his most recent start, and his overall season line. You’ll be able to find this info on the far right sidebar, right below the Countdown Clock for the time being. That’s it, simple enough.

So what’s the point of the Watch? To revel in Brackman’s awesomeness. No seriously. It’s there to show off his performance and make sure everyone knows how he’s pitching. Of course there’s always the chance that he might suck, but that’s the risk. So far our previous Watchees (Phil Hughes in ’06, Joba in ’07, the TJ Rehab quartet in ’08) haven’t disappointed.

Usually I have to debate between three or four worthy candidates all winter before settling on my Watch subject, but this year it was a piece of cake. It’s not often a pitching prospect of Brackman’s caliber comes along, and when one does he’s worth paying attention too. As exciting as Austin Jackson and Jesus Montero are, position players just don’t have that wow factor. Zach McAllister and Dellin Betances? They’ll have their day. Mark Melancon won’t be in the minors all year, and the thought of switching to a new Watch mid-season makes me feel dirty, so he didn’t make the cut either.

The minor league season doesn’t start until the middle of next week, but I figured it as about time to get this thing up on the site, especially since some other sites are trying to bite our style. I keed, I keed. Enjoy.

Photo Credit: Sports Card Forum


  1. mko says:

    Good choice ;-)
    An idea: Right below that you could track Melancon’s progress in his quest for reaching the majors. What do you think? When he’s arrived simply remove his part.

  2. jsbrendog says:


  3. tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside says:

    Off topic. Sue me: I AM IN YANKEE STADIUM.





  4. Expired Milk says:

    So what are his peripherals?
    I know he has a high 90′s fb but what about the rest of his stuff?

    • Thomas says:

      In addition to his fastball, he also has a real nasty curve and I believe an average change. Essentially, he is like a 6’11″ version of AJ Burnett

    • Matt says:

      From HWB:

      K/9: 9.53
      K/BB: 1.44
      BB/9: 6.62
      WHIP: 1.65

      Those are obviously very unreliable from 34 innings of his first pro baseball.

      • frits says:

        TJ recovery, inconsistent command is expected.

      • Thomas says:

        Here are his college stats at NCST (2005-age 19/2006/2007)

        K/9: 9.0/10.2/8.5
        K/BB: 2.4/1.7/2.0
        BB/9: 3.8/6.0/4.3
        H/9: 6.7/11.8/9.0
        HR/9: 0.0/0.6/0.8
        WHIP: 1.16/1.98/1.47

        • MattG says:

          Is that for real? Those numbers are terrible. So this guy is nothing but projection, then?

          • Thomas says:

            A lot is projection. He has had inconsistent mechanics leading to control issues (which is too be expected with his height).

            Also, he did have a good freshman year and his junior year he was pitching hurt I believe.

            • Troy says:

              They say his athleticism should help him in learning to repeat his delivery.

              • MattG says:

                I…just…damn. Major league deal, big bonus…how do you take this gamble? Damn the Tigers picking Porcello.

                • pat says:

                  How do you take this gamble?

                  Dude would have gone top 3 if he was healthy. The Yankees had absolutely no business even being close to drafting him. When you have the 30th pick overall and it’s a kid whos 6’10″ athletic, with 100mph gas and a knee buckling curveball you pull the trigger every time. If he can’t get it together no big deal, the list of notable 30th overall picks is rather uninspiring. If he gets healthy and even come close to his ceiling, you have an ace pitcher. You gotta make that pick every time.

                • Troy says:

                  heh, really.

                • ColoYank says:

                  Look at his logs from Hawaii. He improved drastically after two rough starts that fouled his numbers.

                  This kid is the real thing.

                • MattG says:

                  You say if he was healthy he would’ve went top 3? With those control issues? In college, no less? I think not.

                • Rick in Boston says:

                  Brackman in Mock Drafts from 2007:

                  RealGM – #6
                  Outside the Beltway – #11
                  Phuture Phillies – #27
                  MLB.com – #24
                  John Sickels – #30

                  Also, let’s not forget that Brackman wasn’t a full-time baseball player until his draft year; he was a member of the NC State basketball team. He was tabbed as a high first round pick because of his size, fastball, curve. Mechanically he had problems, such as his control. Mechanics are fixable, but 6’11″ pitchers who throw in the high-90′s do not come along very often.

                • MattG says:

                  “Also, let’s not forget that Brackman wasn’t a full-time baseball player until his draft year…Mechanically he had problems, such as his control.”

                  This, to me, is reason to avoid drafting him, not reason to move him up on your chart.

                  “Mechanics are fixable.”

                  Of course they are. And for every player that gets his mechanics straightened out in A ball, there are 50 that, if they could just shave a walk per nine off their stats, would have a major league career.

                  I what I see is a bunch of over-zealous scouts projecting greatness onto a massive project, and I think, “What else WOULD a scout do?” I mean, this is the romantic image of a scout, uncovering the hidden gem, the guy they see greatness in, despite all his flaws.

                  I am just shocked to see so much projection in such a high pick. A guy with a #1 pitcher label should’ve dominated the ACC. I mean, Brett Cecil went 8 picks later, had a better ACC career, and will be pitching in the AL East this season. Brackman might end up being a far better pitcher than Cecil, but he odds of it happening have to be very small.

                • steve (different one) says:

                  Brett Gardner hit a HR off Cecil.

                  case closed.

                • andrew says:

                  “Also, let’s not forget that Brackman wasn’t a full-time baseball player until his draft year…Mechanically he had problems, such as his control.”
                  This, to me, is reason to avoid drafting him, not reason to move him up on your chart.

                  I disagree, this means that Brackman has had probably half the coaching that these other guys have had and that’s he’s nowhere near his potential. Moves him up on the board for me.

    • frits says:

      He throws a 4 seamer, a 2 seamer, a knucklecurve, and a changeup. The knucklecurve has been inconsistent.

  5. A.D. says:

    Didn’t want to go Bleich watch since is already written in stone that he need TJS!!!11!!

  6. Stryker says:

    didn’t know where to post this, but since this is the most recent thread:



  7. Thomas says:

    I assumed it would be the Brackman watch, since you mentioned it in a chat at the end of the season. However, it would have been cool to do the 3B watch of Brackman, Betances, and Bliech. However, that may have been too much work.

  8. pat says:

    Does it have to be a pitcher? Suttle is coming off pretty serious labrum surgery.

  9. AndrewYF says:

    I don’t know what Mike has against Betances, but at this point, it’s more likely he’ll excel than Brackman, who hasn’t really excelled since high school.

    • rbizzler says:

      But he is a baller, and will dunk on your head. I think that counts for something, if not everything.

    • whozat says:

      That’s false. Betances isn’t even really done growing yet. It’s not “more likely” that he’ll excel than Brackman…Sooooooo much could still go wrong for that kid it’s not even funny. Brackman’s in his man-body, he’s had more experience pitching, and he just has to figure out how to keep all the pieces in sync. A tall order (hah!), but Betances has to do all that while continuing to fill out, AND figure out what it means to be a pitcher.

  10. Andy In Sunny Daytona says:

    May I suggest a “Croussett In America” table?

  11. A.D. says:

    Do we know where Brack is starting out? Charleston?

    • Troy says:

      Yeah, he’s starting in Charleston, hopefully he’ll be in Tampa at some point.

      I want to be able to watch the big guy in person.

  12. Andy In Sunny Daytona says:

    Jose Mojica is coming off ACL surgery, he could be a possibility.

  13. MattG says:

    Ramiro Pena is the next Derek Jeter!!

  14. Dan X. says:

    I live in Charleston and go see the Riverdogs whenever I can (How can you beat $5 general admission and $6.75 32oz beers) and I’m very excited to see him pitch. Last year I got to meet Dellin and he was quiet but very friendly. The players are extrememly accessible at this field and I will try to report after I see a game. I’m also a professional photographer so I’ll try and bring my camera every now and then.

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