Yankees sign undrafted free agent Daniel Aldrich

Derek Lowe, time off, and adjustments
X-ray shows Pettitte's fracture is healing well, expects to throw this week

Via Kendall Rogers, the Yankees have signed College of Charleston outfielder Daniel Aldrich as an undrafted free agent for at least $150k. Regardless of the final amount, anything given to him in excess of $100k counts against this year’s draft pool. The Yankees had more than $400k in pool money left over after first rounder Ty Hensley signed a below-slot deal.

Aldrich, 21, was a redshirt sophomore this spring, so he’s not the typical college senior that usually signs as an undrafted free agent. The left-handed hitter was one of the best power hitters in the country over the last two years, participating in the College Homerun Derby twice and winning in 2011. Aldrich absolutely mashed with wood bats in the Cape Cod League this summer, hitting ten homers in just 30 games. He was a .315/.389/.651 hitter during his college career. Here’s some video.

Most undrafted free agents are minor league filler, but Aldrich actually offers some upside due to his power. No word on his defense, but he pitched in high school and probably has a decent arm. The downside is that he’s a hacker, striking out 116 times in 121 college games with a 48/6 K/BB on the Cape this summer. The Yankees had draft pool money to spare and have had a bit of success with CofC kids (most notably Brett Gardner) though, and Aldrich is about as good a prospect as you’ll find in the undrafted free agent ranks.

Derek Lowe, time off, and adjustments
X-ray shows Pettitte's fracture is healing well, expects to throw this week
  • Pasta Stumbling Sojo

    I don’t have much of an understanding of these types of things. Why wasn’t he drafted?

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

      Teams may not have liked him much or thought he was unsignable. He was eligible but no team drafted him, not even the Yankees. Who knows why.

      • Pasta Stumbling Sojo

        Then why’d the Yankees change their mind now?

        I’m not necessarily asking about this particular player, just in general what changes between the draft and a month or two later that makes a team sign someone they passed on in the draft.

        • Paul VuvuZuvella

          Perhaps the mashing in the Cape Cod league?

        • Ted Nelson

          Could be that they changed their mind in terms of his value. Or could be that they liked every guy they drafted more than they liked him. They still might have found him worth signing, or just signed him to not waste the pool money once they had some $ left over.

  • teddy

    why was he not drafted

  • BJ

    So.. How come no one one drafted him?

  • joshfortunatus

    I like him just because he doesn’t swing with gloves.

    • jjyank

      But does he pee on his hands?

      • joshfortunatus

        That’s where he gets his power, right?

        • jjyank

          I can’t think of any other source.

  • DERP

    I was wondering if we would use some of the leftover money. Arizona just signed someone for 400K.


  • DERP

    He was named a semifinalist for the Golden Spikes award after his freshman season. The only freshman named as a semifinalist. This probably doesn’t mean much, but is cool nonetheless.


  • DERP
    • The Real Greg

      He was also thought Dante Bichette Jr. would be a total failure and so far he has been proven wrong.

      • pat

        Well he kind of has been so far this year unfortunately…

        • The Real Greg

          Not a total failure. Second on the Charleston team in doubles and 3rd in runs scored.

          Underwhelming to be sure, but not a total failure.

          • pat

            .241/.313/.321 is pretty horrible. I guess not an abject failure as he has an XBH every 5 games or so, but it ain’t pretty. And this is from a big DBJr. fan.

            • pat

              A DBJr fan and not a fan of KLaw at that.

          • Slugger27

            dude, come on. hes been a disaster in 2012, no way around it.

            • The Real Greg

              No, hitting .212 with no homers and 5 RBIs is a total failure.

              • Slugger27

                hes averaging a homer every 222 PAs. OPS of 634, and wRC+ of 76. in 2012, hes been a disaster. saying its opinion rather than fact is complete semantics.

                agree to disagree i guess.

                • The Real Greg

                  In terms of homers, I don’t worry about that because usually the power comes last in development, i.e. Mike Trout and Robinson Cano.

                  Now if he repeats this performance next year, then we can pull out the failure card.

                  • Slugger27

                    im not calling him a failure, im calling his 2012 a failure. im not VERY worried about him as a prospect, but i am worried. i know power is last to develop, but TWO homers??

                    i think he’ll rebound next year, hes only 19 after all, but still, its been about a worst case scenario season for him.

          • Steve S

            That has to be the worst counter-argument ever.

    • CountryClub

      With the power he has, it’s worth the 150k gamble. Most likely he doesnt turn into anything. But, who knows, maybe a minor swing adjustment cuts down on the Ks.

  • Bob Buttons the Cat

    Nobody tell him who Mark Reynolds is!

    • Slugger27

      why not? isnt mark reynolds the exact type player a guy with his skillset should strive to be?

      • Rick in Philly

        If Aldrich ends up having Mark Reynolds’ career, than Yankee fans should be pretty damn excited.

        • Slugger27

          well that goes without saying. mark reynolds is a major league player after all. but my point is a guy with aldrich’s skillset should strive to be a mark reynolds type player, since thats whats most likely going to get him to the big leagues. theres always room for someone who hits homers.

      • Bob Buttons the Cat

        Mark Reynolds’ efficiency is largely limited. His OPS+ is 108 and his RAA is -48 according to BRef. It doesn’t hurt to hit a lot of homers but at .331 he seems like a one trick pony.

        Jack Cust on the other hand, would be nice. He can actually get on base and fake some outfield.

  • Paul VuvuZuvella

    Why not…it’s not my money.

    • Gonzo

      They still have the more to spend on UDFA’s if they want. They can bust out some big offers if they want.

      • Betty Lizard

        I read “UDFA’s” as Unidentified Flying Objects. It kinda works.
        Anyway, welcome to the Yankees, Aldrich. Hope springs . . . .

    • Will (the other one)

      Exactly. For $150K, any upside at all is a bonus. If he turns out to be a prospect, fantastic; if not, he can fill a spot in the minors with no harm done.

    • Bob Buttons the Cat

      There was a dollar in there that was used to buy a bleacher seat at Yankees Stadium that was dropped by you when you went to Wal-Mart, so technically part of it is your money.

  • Buhner’s barber

    Did we ever find out how much pool money Jose Mesa jr got?

  • HW7

    He’ll be a good guy to have around if a Home Run Derby breaks out.

  • Opus

    *towering home run*
    “Jesus, this guy hits a ton, how come nobody else picked up on him?”

    “Alright Eddie that’s enough fastballs, show him some breaking balls.”

  • Cliff

    BA .315, OBP .381 for a college career seems like a better judge of patience than a handful of summer games.

  • felixpanther

    according to Scout.com’s souting report, he’s Cody JohnsonII

  • Chris

    I met the kid once while he was playing in another collegiate summer league in 2011. Not the brightest of bulbs but he does have legitimate power. Let’s just hope he makes consistent contact.

  • Magic

    Trust me this kid is a ball player. I’ve watched him since his prep and summer team days prior to college. He’s a big stage player, he won Perfect Game WWBA MVP after capping off a solid championship round day with 4 HRs in 5 games to lead his team to a championship as well as carrying his prep team to AAAA State Championship batting .416 with 13 HRS that following season. Not to mention his college and summer league career stats. He tears the cover off the ball and has light tower power, no wonder his nick name in the Cape was Roy Hobbs. This kid got shafted by not being drafted in the top 2 rounds. Definitely was 1st round material as he has been ranked by Perfect Game a 9.5-10 since his freshman year of high school which is why he was offered as a freshman a scholarship by South Carolina (which no one knows about). Then went on to CofC to put up phenomenal stats, that most players couldn’t accomplish in 4 years, he did it in 2. This kid has a hell of a work ethic on the field and in the weight room and still has not been given what he deserves. That’s why you WILL see this kid at the MLB level. He plays with a chip on his shoulder because even after everything he has accomplished he still doesn’t get the credit he deserves.

  • YankeeFan4Life

    Yeah saw this guy play down in Tampa at spring ball…his team was lucky enough to have to face Michael Pineda. Pineda was pumping an effortless 95mph. He faced 6 batters and k’ed all of em. Then this kid stepped in for his first AB worked the count to his favor then turned around Pineda’s 95mph fastball with ease blasting it over the LF wall. This kid can definitely hit quality pitching and shows good patience, knows what he’s looking for (FASTBALL) and sports a great build with a lot of power! Look forward to seeing him in the league one day. His swing and power is a perfect match for the short porch at Yankee Stadium in LF.