Hot .GIFs: Rondon’s slider & Kahnle’s fastball

Girardi says Hughes may not be ready for start of season
Open Thread: 2/27 Camp Notes

It seemed a bit odd when the Yankees added left-hander Francisco Rondon to the 40-man roster early in the offseason, keeping him away from the Rule 5 Draft. The 24-year-old pitched to a 3.93 ERA with 80 strikeouts and 42 walks in 71 innings across three levels last year, mostly with Double-A Trenton. Solid, but he wasn’t talked about a top (or even good) prospect and didn’t seem 40-man worthy.

Rondon threw two scoreless innings in this afternoon’s game, allowing a walk and a single while striking out two. As you can see, the kid has a pretty awesome slider. Downright CC Sabathia-esque, if I may. After seeing that, it’s easy to understand why they added him to the 40-man now, that breaking ball gives him at least lefty specialist potential. Some more clips of the slider after the jump. Make sure you click to embiggen.

That is a big time slider. As an added bonus, here are two clips on right-hander Tommy Kahnle pumping some serious heat. He’s in the conversation for hardest thrower in the system. Mid-90s in late-February is no joke.

Girardi says Hughes may not be ready for start of season
Open Thread: 2/27 Camp Notes
  • fat tony

    MAxisa, the man with too much time on his hands. guhblessyou though

  • MannyGeee

    Oh Tommy Kahnle… So much V-LO!

  • Havok9120

    Holy crap, I heard he hit 98 today but I didn’t see it. That’s darn impressive in the first week of games.

    And that slider is a perfect example of that first hand knowledge > sitting behind our computer screens thing that we were discussing earlier. The fact that he can ever throw that, even in a meaningless game, is pretty great.

  • Steve (different one)

    I would also guess that a lefty reliever is one of the easier players to hide on your roster all year. So the Yankees not only like Rondon’s stuff, they probably surmised he had a good chance at getting pick.

  • Tom from England

    How did Heathcott fare today?

    • Winter

      1 for 3 with a single, a run scored, and a strikeout.

  • Dan

    Kahnle warms up quick.

  • Deathstroke Heathcott

    Man, Kahnle looks like he gets a ton of tight backspin on that fastball.

  • Juke Early

    Wow! a legit & impressive bright spot. Couldn’t do better with F/X.

  • Strat

    I clicked to get a better look at Rondon’s slider and Kahnle’s fastball. I must admit, I was embiggened.

  • Bryan

    Who was catching for Rondon? That guy seemed to be having some issues. Also, who has the better slider: Rondon or Montgomery?