The Yankees made a bullpen acquisition earlier today, though it’s not one that has an immediate impact on the major league team. Via his agency, right-hander Logan Kensing has signed a minor league deal with the Yanks. Kensing last pitched the the majors in 2009 with the Marlins and the Nationals, combining for an ugly 8.92 ERA in 35.1 innings. That goes a long way in explaining his absence from the majors in 2010.
Kensing came into the league as a 21-year-old with the Marlins in 2004, though he didn’t become a regular until 2006. From 2006 through 2008 he threw 106.1 innings to a 3.98 ERA and 4.53 FIP, striking out more than a batter per inning while walking nearly five. He underwent Tommy John surgery, which limited him to just 13.1 innings in 2007 and cost him the end of the 2006 season. That he pitched as a regular in 2006, of course, means that Joe Girardi is familiar with him. Apparently Girardi liked him very much in 2006.
After he was designated for assignment in 2009 the Marlins traded him to the Nats for a low-tier pitching prospect. On May 15th the Nats designated him for assignment, but brought him back in July. While he wasn’t as bad from July through the end of the season, he still had a 6.65 ERA, due in large part to a pair of horrible performances. There’s no real way to pretty it up: he’s been terrible.
Kensing does throw hard, usually around 92-93. He goes to a slider often. The chances of him cracking the major league roster are pretty low, but he’s kind of an interesting pick-up, considering he even got to the bigs as a 21-year-old. But that was a long time ago, and he clearly hasn’t adapted well. Maybe a year away from the game — he didn’t even pitch in the minors in 2010, though he could have pitched independent ball — have helped. Chances are, he’s just an intriguing arm in Scranton.