Minor Moves: Betances, Laird, Pope, Johnson

Larry Rothschild named new Yankee pitching coach
Open Thread: Help Wanted

Don’t the Yankees know that 4pm ET on a Friday is no time to break news? After announcing that Larry Rothschild will be the new pitching coach, the following minor league news made the rounds…

  • Dellin Betances, Brandon Laird, and Ryan Pope were all added to the 40-man roster, protecting them from the upcoming Rule 5 Draft. I thought that George Kontos would get protected as well, but the Yankees must feel that he isn’t capable of sticking on a big league team’s 25-man roster for a full season yet. He, along with Craig Heyer and Lance Pendleton, are candidates to be selected.
  • The Yanks acquired minor league outfielder Cody Johnson from the Braves in exchange for cash considerations. Johnson, 22, was the 24th overall pick in the 2006 draft but it hasn’t clicked yet. He’s got big time power (career .233 ISO) but is a whiff machine (39.0% strikeout rate), and in fact 49.9% of his 1,813 career plate appearances have ended with a homer, walk, or strikeout. Three true outcomes FTW. Johnson is likely to begin 2011 with Double-A Trenton.
Larry Rothschild named new Yankee pitching coach
Open Thread: Help Wanted
  • http://www.blogs.thetenthinningstretch.com the tenth inning stretch

    Apparently Johnson had been rated the 11th-best prospect in Atlanta’s system.


    • GermanYankee

      that was three years ago.

      Interesting move, he seems to be a poor man’s Mark Reynolds: lots of power, lots of Ks. If he can get his average up he could be a nice trade chip in the future. But when I take a closer look at his defensive stats … oh dear … Adam Dunn kinda guy.

      • Ted Nelson

        For nothing but cash, though… If he makes the big leagues in any capacity this works out great.

  • RR

    Mike, you think Kontos and Heyer will be picked up fairly quickly, right? Heyer picked it up a lot lately… nice guy as well, got the chance to talk to him for a few at a fall league game.

    • http://www.twitter.com/ngoral Jake LaMotta’s Left Hook

      I doubt Kontos gets picked up. He’s been terrible since coming back.

      • http://twitter.com/firstheart42 seimiya

        I think he had, what, one decent fall league outing? Some of his numbers just look like a bomb went off.

      • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

        He had a 3.29 FIP (7.9 K/9 and 3.1 BB/9) with Double-A Trenton this year. Not bad at all coming off surgery.

        • http://www.twitter.com/ngoral Jake LaMotta’s Left Hook

          I agree, not bad coming off surgery, and he definitely needs more time. Brackman’s numbers were very scary last year; we’ve all seen how far he’s come this year. It’s only fair Kontos gets an extended look.

          Still, the numbers were pretty bad, and that might scare some teams. Personally, I would not protect him, because I don’t think a team will take that chance in the Rule V draft.

          • http://www.yfsf.org AndrewYF

            I mean, come on, if Nova couldn’t stick with San Diego, what chance does Kontos have of sticking with anyone? Smart move by the Yankees, plus Kontos is probably below even Ryan Pope now on their pitching depth chart.

  • Marc

    I don’t get adding Pope to the 40 man, no chance in hell he sticks on a teams 40 man. And if he magically does, who cares?

    • J

      They really liked what they saw from Pope out of the bullpen last year.

      • Pounder

        He must have been ……wait for it……infallible!