DotF: Mateo, Andujar lead Tampa to a win on Opening Day

I hate to start the first DotF of the season with bad news, but … bad news: Jim Callis says C Luis Torrens has been shut down after experiencing discomfort in his surgically repaired shoulder during Spring Training. Bummer. He missed all of last season following labrum surgery, but was healthy enough to do some baseball work in Instructional League last fall. Hopefully this is just a minor blip and he’s back soon.

If you missed it yesterday, we posted a ton of minor league notes, so check that out if you haven’t already. And if you didn’t miss it, check it out again anyway. In honor of DotF tradition, here are the full lineups on Opening Day.

Triple-A Scranton‘s game was suspended due to rain after four innings. They’ll finish it tomorrow. CF Slade Heathcott had two hits and C Gary Sanchez threw a runner out from his knees, so says Donnie Collins. Here’s the box score.

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DotF: Gamel, Mitchell, Austin wrap up winter ball seasons

Former Yankees speedster Rico Noel has signed with the Dodgers, he announced on Twitter. It’s a minor league contract with an invite to Spring Training. Noel was New York’s pinch-running specialist in September, going 1-for-2 at the plate and 5-for-7 in steal attempts. Looks like the Yankees will have to find someone else to be their late season runner next year. Here are some other minor league notes:

  • Check out this mailbag post from J.J. Cooper about the toughest classification jumps in baseball. The jump from Triple-A to MLB is the toughest for obvious reasons, but, in the minors, scouts consider the jump from High-A to Double-A the toughest. That’s when players really start to pair raw tools with refinement. Double-A has always been the level where suspects start getting weeded out from the prospects.
  • Cooper ranked the top 25 prospects traded this offseason. SS Dansby Swanson, who went from the Diamondbacks to the Braves in the Shelby Miller trade, claims the top spot. He was the first overall pick in the 2015 draft. RHP Rookie Davis (No. 14), 3B Eric Jagielo (No. 17), RHP Luis Cessa (No. 23), and RHP Caleb Cotham (No. 25) all made the list.
  • With Davis and Jagielo having been traded to the Reds for Aroldis Chapman, RHP Nick Rumbelow and LHP James Pazos slid into the vacated spots on MLB.com’s Top 30 Yankees Prospects List. I’ve started to sketch out my annual top 30 list and I still have no idea what to do after the top four spots. I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or bad thing.
  • Joel Sherman says OF Aaron Judge spent time at the Tampa complex earlier this offseason to work on staying back for breaking ball recognition, and will do so again sometime this month. This’ll be made into a big deal because it’s Judge, but players routinely spend time in Tampa for “mini-camps” in the offseason. Follow ’em on Twitter. They shuttle in and out of Tampa all winter.
  • The Yankees have re-signed IF Jose Rosario and signed OF Juan Silva, according to Matt Eddy. Rosario, 24, has been something of a roving infielder over the last six seasons, reaching as high as Triple-A. Silva, 24, hit .212/.321/.304 (85 wRC+) in 98 games split between Double-A and Triple-A for the Reds last year. I’m guessing he’s heading to Double-A Trenton to serve as a depth outfielder in 2016.
  • Double-A Trenton manager Al Pedrique will be bumped up to manage Triple-A Scranton next season, he confirmed to Matt Kardos. “I will be managing Scranton next year,” said Pedrique. Longtime Triple-A Scranton manager Dave Miley was let go following last season.
  • And finally, Jack Curry reports Alex Rodriguez gives amateur scouting director Damon Oppenheimer scouting reports on Miami area players. “(Alex has) a passion for amateur scouting,” said Oppenheimer. Neat.

Now for the updated stats. This will be the final update of the offseason because the various winter ball regular seasons are either over or will end this weekend. Most Yankees farmhand stopped playing before the holidays anyway. The 2016 minor league regular season begins Thursday, April 7th. See you then.

Arizona Fall League (regular season is over)

  • OF Tyler Austin: 21 G, 22-81 (.272), 13 , 5 2B, 3 HR, 7 RBI, 9 BB, 18 K, 7 SB, 2 CS (.272/.344/.444)
  • OF Dustin Fowler: 16 G, 17-61 (.279), 14 R, 2 2B, 2 HR, 7 RBI, 3 BB, 10 K, 7 K (.279/.313/.410)
  • C Gary Sanchez: 22 G, 26-88 (.295), 16 R, 6 2B, 1 3B, 7 HR, 21 RBI, 8 BB, 19 K, 4 SB, 2 CS, 1 HBP (.295/.357/.625)
  • IF Tyler Wade: 14 G, 9-41 (.220), 6 R, 2 2B, 6 RBI, 6 BB, 7 K, 2 SB, 1 CS (.220/.313/.268)
  • RHP Domingo Acevedo: 7 G, 12 IP, 9 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 11 K, 1 HR, 2 RBI (2.25 ERA, 1.00 WHIP)
  • LHP Ian Clarkin: 6 G, 6 GS, 24.2 IP, 34 H, 16 R, 16 ER, 14 BB, 17 K, 2 HR, 1 HB, 3 WP (5.84 ERA and 1.95 WHIP)
  • LHP Chaz Hebert: 7 G, 1 GS, 14.1 IP, 13 H, 9 R, 7 ER, 10 BB, 12 K, 1 WP (4.40 ERA and 1.60 WHIP)
  • LHP Tyler Webb: 9 G, 0 GS, 12.1 IP, 13 H, 8 R, 8 ER, 3 BB, 12 K, 1 HR, 2 WP (5.84 ERA and 1.30 WHIP)

Dominican Summer League (regular season is over)

  • IF Abi Avelino: 5 G, 0-10, 1 R, 4 K
  • OF Cesar Puello: 25 G, 11-43 (.256), 7 R, 1 3B, 3 RBI, 4 BB, 9 K, 3 SB, 2 CS, 2 HBP (.256/.347/.302) — former top Mets prospects signed a minor league deal a week or two ago
  • IF Jose Rosario: 1 G, 1-3, 1 2B, 2 K
  • 3B Rob Segedin: 14 G, 7-34 (.206), 4 R, 1 2B, 3 BB, 6 K, 1 HBP (.206/.289/.235) — the 3B Eric Jagielo trade likely means Segedin will start the season as the regular third baseman with Triple-A Scranton
  • LHP Richard Bleier: 7 G, 7 GS, 31.2 IP, 30 H, 11 R, 10 ER, 4 BB, 9 K, 4 HR, 1 HB (2.84 ERA and 1.07 WHIP) — signed a minor league deal a few days ago … he had a 9.5 K% at Double-A and Triple-A during the regular season

Mexican Pacific League (regular season is over)

  • C Sebastian Valle: 37 G, 24-128 (.188), 9 R, 9 2B, 2 HR, 18 RBI, 6 BB, 35 K, 1 SB, 1 HBP (.188/.225/.305) — depth catcher signed a minor league deal not too long ago
  • RHP Gio Gallegos: 13 G, 0 GS, 9 IP, 14 H, 11 R, 10 ER, 4 BB, 14 K, 2 HR, 1 WP (10.00 ERA, 2.00 WHIP)

Roberto Clemente Professional Baseball League (Puerto Rico) (season ends Monday)

  • IF Cito Culver: 6 G, 2-19 (.105), 1 R, 1 BB, 6 (.105/.150/.105)
  • OF Juan Silva: 24 G, 16-67 (.239), 13 R, 4 2B, 1 HR, 6 RBI, 23 BB, 16 K, 6 SB, 2 CS (.239/.433/.343) — that’s an interesting stat line
  • RHP Bryan Mitchell: 5 G, 5 GS, 21.2 IP, 21 H, 13 R, 10 ER, 12 BB, 14 K, 1 HB, 2 WP (4.15 ERA and 1.52 WHIP) — he’s up to 126.1 innings on the season … his career high is 145.1 innings in 2013

Venezuelan Winter League (regular season is over)

  • OF Tyler Austin: 8 G, 7-25 (.280), 5 R, 4 2B, 4 RBI, 2 BB, 9 K, 1 CS (.280/.333/.440) — headed down here for some extra playing time after the AzFL season … next season is definitely a make or break year
  • C Francisco Diaz: 15 G, 5-19 (.263), 1 R, 1 2B, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 7 K (.263/.300/.316) — signed a minor league deal earlier this offseason
  • OF Ben Gamel: 25 G, 22-87 (.253), 8 R, 4 2B, 3 HR, 15 RBI, 11 BB, 18 K, 3 SB, 1 CS (.253/.327/.402)
  • OF Teodoro Martinez: 52 G, 50-203 (.246), 23 R, 5 2B, 2 3B, 17 RBI, 7 BB, 22 K, 2 SB, 2 HBP (.246/.277/.291)
  • RHP Luis Cedeno: 6 G, 0 GS, 5 IP, 8 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 3 BB, 2 K, 1 HB, 1 WP (9.00 ERA and 2.20 WHIP)
  • RHP Jaron Long: 8 G, 8 GS, 43 IP, 44 H, 12 R, 11 ER, 11 BB, 23 K, 1 HB, 2 WP (2.30 ERA and 1.28 WHIP) — finished the 2015 calendar year at 197.1 innings
  • RHP Mark Montgomery: 14 G, 0 GS, 12.1 IP, 12 H, 9 R, 9 ER, 5 BB, 15 K, 2 HR (6.57 ERA and 1.38 WHIP) — former top bullpen prospect went unselected in the Rule 5 Draft for the second straight year

DotF: Mitchell keeps getting innings as winter ball winds down

Two weeks ago the Scottsdale Scorpions beat the Surprise Saguaros in the Arizona Fall League Championship Game. Here’s the box score. C Gary Sanchez went 1-for-3 with a walk and a strikeout, OF Tyler Austin went 1-for-4 with a strikeout, and OF Dustin Fowler went 2-for-3 with a two-run home run, a walk, and a strikeout for Surprise. The homer is embedded above. Jim Callis listed Fowler as one of seven prospects who stood out in the title game. Here’s a bunch more minor league notes:

  • Both Bill Mitchell and Callis released their rankings of the top Arizona Fall League prospects. Mitchell ranked Sanchez the No. 2 prospect in the circuit behind Cardinals RHP Alex Reyes. Callis had Sanchez fourth behind Reyes, Pirates OF Austin Meadows, and Rangers OF Lewis Brinson.
  • Eric Longenhagen (subs. req’d) listed Sanchez as one of the prospects who most improved their stock in the AzFL. It’s not performance related either. Longenhagen says Sanchez looked quicker blocking balls in the dirt and improved his throwing, specifically how he comes out of the crouch.
  • MiLB.com announced their 2015 Organization All-Stars for the Yankees recently. It’s pretty much exactly who you would expect at every position. Sanchez at catcher, 1B Greg Bird at first, 2B Rob Refsnyder at second, so on and so forth. The only real surprise is at third base. Click the link!
  • Pitching coordinator Gil Patterson has left the Yankees to return to the Athletics in the same role, reports Jane Lee. Patterson, who’s had multiple stints with both the Yankees and A’s, rejoined the organization two years ago. He has a great reputation for developing arms. Josh Norris says Triple-A Scranton pitching coach Scott Aldred and rehab pitching coordinator Danny Borrell will assume Patterson’s responsibilities going forward.
  • The Yankees have re-signed C Kyle Higashioka, according to Matt Eddy. Higashioka became a minor league free agent earlier this offseason. Eddy says the Yankees also signed RHP Spencer Mahoney out of an independent league. Mahoney has never pitched before. He’s a shortstop the team is moving to the mound.
  • More minor transactions from Eddy: C Rainiero Coa has been released, C Francisco Arcia has signed with the Marlins, and OF Ericson Leonora signed with the Diamondbacks. Arcia and Leonora became free agents a few weeks ago. The Yankees also signed RHP Daniel Marten as an international free agent. He’s an 18-year-old out of the Dominican Republic. No word on his bonus, but if he’s 18, it won’t be much.
  • J.J. Cooper posted a Rule 5 Draft preview, if you’re interested. OF Jake Cave is the only Yankee farmhand mentioned, and Cooper describes him as a more “well-rounded outfielder than toolsy.” He adds Cave is “a lefthanded hitting center fielder who could entice a team looking for an inexpensive fourth outfielder.”
  • Sanchez has changed agents and signed on with Magnus Sports, according to Tim Dierkes. I’m not sure who his agent was before. Magnus Sports is a new firm fronted by musician Marc Anthony. No, really. It’s way, way, way too early to think about what this means long-term.
  • Hudson Belinsky wrote a nice story about longtime Yankees scout Cesar Presbott — he’s been with the team since 1982 — and his non-profit organization, the Cesar Presbott Foundation. The mission: help people. That’s all. Dellin Betances, on of Presbott’s draft picks, and Brian Cashman helped Presbott distribute turkeys before Thanksgiving.
  • And finally, here’s a neat story by Marcia C. Smith on Angels LHP Andrew Heaney, who traveled to Honduras for a five-day humanitarian mission last month. I’m mentioning this here because RHP Ty Hensley was on the trip too. Pretty cool. Hensley has a reputation for doing lots to help others.

Got all that? There was no minor league update last weekend because of Thanksgiving, so that’s two weeks worth of notes there. Now here are the performance updates.

Arizona Fall League (the season is over, so these stats are final)

  • OF Tyler Austin: 21 G, 22-81 (.272), 13 , 5 2B, 3 HR, 7 RBI, 9 BB, 18 K, 7 SB, 2 CS (.272/.344/.444
  • OF Dustin Fowler: 16 G, 17-61 (.279), 14 R, 2 2B, 2 HR, 7 RBI, 3 BB, 10 K, 7 K (.279/.313/.410) — took advantage of the extra exposure in the AzFL
  • C Gary Sanchez: 22 G, 26-88 (.295), 16 R, 6 2B, 1 3B, 7 HR, 21 RBI, 8 BB, 19 K, 4 SB, 2 CS, 1 HBP (.295/.357/.625) — was not named AzFL MVP despite leading the league in homers, RBI, and total bases
  • IF Tyler Wade: 14 G, 9-41 (.220), 6 R, 2 2B, 6 RBI, 6 BB, 7 K, 2 SB, 1 CS (.220/.313/.268)
  • RHP Domingo Acevedo: 7 G, 12 IP, 9 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 11 K, 1 HR, 2 RBI (2.25 ERA, 1.00 WHIP)
  • LHP Ian Clarkin: 6 G, 6 GS, 24.2 IP, 34 H, 16 R, 16 ER, 14 BB, 17 K, 2 HR, 1 HB, 3 WP (5.84 ERA and 1.95 WHIP) — hooray health, boo stats
  • LHP Chaz Hebert: 7 G, 1 GS, 14.1 IP, 13 H, 9 R, 7 ER, 10 BB, 12 K, 1 WP (4.40 ERA and 1.60 WHIP)
  • LHP Tyler Webb: 9 G, 0 GS, 12.1 IP, 13 H, 8 R, 8 ER, 3 BB, 12 K, 1 HR, 2 WP (5.84 ERA and 1.30 WHIP) — missed the second half of the regular season with a hand injury, so he was just making up for lost time

Dominican Winter League

  • IF Abi Avelino: 1 G, 0-1, 1 K
  • C Eduardo de Oleo: 1 G, 0-1, 1 K
  • 3B Rob Segedin: 5 G, 2-9 (.222), 2 R, 1 BB, 2 K (.222/.300/.222)
  • SS Jorge Mateo is listed on a roster but hasn’t played yet. Chances are he won’t at this point. Same goes for the other guys listed on winter ball rosters yet to get into a game.

Mexican Pacific League

  • RHP Gio Gallegos: 13 G, 0 GS, 9 IP, 14 H, 11 R, 10 ER, 4 BB, 14 K, 2 HR, 1 WP (10.00 ERA, 2.00 WHIP)
  • RHP Luis Niebla: 9 G, 9 GS, 46.1 IP, 39 H, 22 R, 19 ER, 27 BB, 31 K, 4 HR, 2 HB, 1 WP (3.69 ERA and 1.42 WHIP)
  • 2B Angelo Gumbs is listed on a roster but hasn’t played yet.

Roberto Clemente Professional Baseball League (Puerto Rico)

  • IF Cito Culver: 6 G, 2-19 (.105), 1 R, 1 BB, 6 (.105/.150/.105) — hasn’t played in two weeks now
  • RHP Bryan Mitchell: 5 G, 5 GS, 21.2 IP, 21 H, 13 R, 10 ER, 12 BB, 14 K, 1 HB, 2 WP (4.15 ERA and 1.52 WHIP) — he’s up to 126.1 innings on the season

Venezuelan Winter League

  • OF Tyler Austin: 1 G, 0-3 — he headed down to Venezuela after finishing up the AzFL season … guess he wants to play as much as possible after a disappointing regular season
  • C Francisco Diaz: 11 G, 4-14 (.286), 1 R, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 4 K (.286/.333/.286) — depth catcher signed a minor league deal a few weeks ago
  • OF Ben Gamel: 25 G, 22-87 (.253), 8 R, 4 2B, 3 HR, 15 RBI, 11 BB, 18 K, 3 SB, 1 CS (.253/.327/.402) — long season for him, I’m sure he’s looking forward to heading home soon
  • OF Teodoro Martinez: 42 G, 41-165 (.248), 19 R, 4 2B, 2 3B, 14 RBI, 5 BB, 17 K, 2 SB, 2 HBP (.248/.277/.297)
  • RHP Luis Cedeno: 6 G, 0 GS, 5 IP, 8 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 3 BB, 2 K, 1 HB, 1 WP (9.00 ERA and 2.20 WHIP)
  • RHP Jaron Long: 8 G, 8 GS, 43 IP, 44 H, 12 R, 11 ER, 11 BB, 23 K, 1 HB, 2 WP (2.30 ERA and 1.28 WHIP) — up to 197.1 total innings on the season
  • RHP Mark Montgomery: 14 G, 0 GS, 12.1 IP, 12 H, 9 R, 9 ER, 5 BB, 15 K, 2 HR (6.57 ERA and 1.38 WHIP) — so does he get popped in the Rule 5 Draft next week?
  • IF Thairo Estrada is also listed on a roster.

DotF: Sanchez & Fowler finish Arizona Fall League strong

The Surprise Saguaros (19-11) finished with the best record in the Arizona Fall League and will play the Scottsdale Scorpions (18-12) in today’s Championship Game. Here are the starting lineups. C Gary Sanchez, OF Tyler Austin, and OF Dustin Fowler are all playing. The game will begin at 3pm ET and you can watch live on MLB Network and MLB.com. Here are some other minor league notes:

  • Not one, but two former Yankees farmhands signed big league contracts this week. RHP Cesar Vargas signed with the Padres and RHP Andury Acevedo hooked on with the Cubs, both teams announced. Vargas and Acevedo became minor league free agents last week. They’re both hard-throwing relievers. The Yankees have plenty of those.
  • Kelsie Heneghan has a nice article on OF Dustin Fowler, who’s had a strong few weeks in the AzFL. “You can see he’s a line-drive hitter, knows how to handle the bat well. He can steal a base, he has good speed, is aggressive on the bases, a good fielder,” said Surprise manager Carlos Subero. “He’s definitely a player that you like on your team, has good intangibles, good ballplayer.”
  • The Yankees have signed C Francisco Diaz and RHP Jhony Brito to minor league contracts, reports Matt Eddy. Diaz, 25, hit .353/.418/.482 (157 wRC+) in 26 Low-A games with the Pirates last year. He’s a pure depth pickup, not a prospect. Someone has to catch, you know? Brito is an international free agent signed out of the Dominican Republic.
  • And finally, Anthony Morales, the ex-football player who allegedly assaulted RHP Ty Hensley last offseason, has been acquitted according to Kyle Schwab. The two reportedly got into an argument about signing bonuses. Hensley recovered from his injuries in time for Spring Training but missed the season following Tommy John surgery.

Now for the winter ball updates. The AzFL regular season is over, so those stats are final. The various Caribbean league seasons don’t end for several weeks.

Arizona Fall League

  • OF Tyler Austin: 21 G, 22-81 (.272), 13 , 5 2B, 3 HR, 7 RBI, 9 BB, 18 K, 7 SB, 2 CS (.272/.344/.444) — apparently he’s heading to Venezuela next to play winter ball
  • OF Dustin Fowler: 16 G, 17-61 (.279), 14 R, 2 2B, 2 HR, 7 RBI, 3 BB, 10 K, 7 K (.279/.313/.410) — nice work for a guy on the taxi squad playing twice a week
  • C Gary Sanchez: 22 G, 26-88 (.295), 16 R, 6 2B, 1 3B, 7 HR, 21 RBI, 8 BB, 19 K, 4 SB, 2 CS, 1 HBP (.295/.357/.625) — led the league in homers, RBI, and total bases (55) … he’s considered the favorite for AzFL MVP after 1B Greg Bird won it last year
  • IF Tyler Wade: 14 G, 9-41 (.220), 6 R, 2 2B, 6 RBI, 6 BB, 7 K, 2 SB, 1 CS (.220/.313/.268) — hit .208/.250/.266 (46 wRC+) in 43 games between Double-A and the AzFL to end the season
  • RHP Domingo Acevedo: 7 G, 0 GS, 12 IP, 9 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 11 K, 1 HR, 2 RBI (2.25 ERA and 1.00 WHIP) — gotta think he’ll start next year in the Low-A Charleston rotation with a chance for a quick promotion
  • LHP Ian Clarkin: 6 G, 6 GS, 24.2 IP, 34 H, 16 R, 16 ER, 14 BB, 17 K, 2 HR, 1 HB, 3 WP (5.84 ERA and 1.95 WHIP) — ugly numbers but at least he’s healthy … I assume he’ll start next season with High-A Tampa
  • LHP Chaz Hebert: 7 G, 1 GS, 14.1 IP, 13 H, 9 R, 7 ER, 10 BB, 12 K, 1 WP (4.40 ERA and 1.60 WHIP) — he wasn’t added to the 40-man roster yesterday so he’ll be exposed to the Rule 5 Draft in a few weeks
  • LHP Tyler Webb: 9 G, 0 GS, 12.1 IP, 13 H, 8 R, 8 ER, 3 BB, 12 K, 1 HR, 2 WP (5.84 ERA and 1.30 WHIP) — got a few innings in after missing the second half with a hand injury

Dominican Summer League

  • IF Abi Avelino: 1 G, 0-1, 1 K
  • C Eduardo de Oleo: 1 G, 0-1, 1 K
  • SS Jorge Mateo is listed on a roster but hasn’t played yet and probably won’t at this point.

Mexican Pacific League

  • RHP Gio Gallegos: 13 G, 0 GS, 9 IP, 14 H, 11 R, 10 ER, 4 BB, 14 K, 2 HR, 1 WP (10.00 ERA and 2.00 WHIP)
  • RHP Luis Niebla: 7 G, 7 GS, 35.1 IP, 27 H, 18 R, 17 ER, 24 BB, 20 K, 3 HR, 2 HB, 1 WP (4.33 ERA and 1.44 WHIP)
  • 2B Angelo Gumbs is listed on a roster but hasn’t played yet. As with Mateo, he probably won’t play if he hasn’t already.

Roberto Clemente Professional Baseball League (Puerto Rico)

  • IF Cito Culver: 6 G, 2-19 (.105), 1 R, 1 BB, 6 (.105/.150/.105)
  • RHP Bryan Mitchell: 4 G, 4 GS, 20.1 IP, 15 H, 7 R, 4 ER, 9 BB, 13 K, 1 HB, 1 WP (1.77 ERA and 1.18 WHIP) — up to 125 innings on the year … his career high is 145.1 innings set back in 2013

Venezuelan Winter League

  • C Francisco Diaz: 9 G, 4-13 (.308), 1 R, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 4 K (.308/.357/.308) — the new guy
  • OF Teodoro Martinez: 34 G, 35-133 (.263), 17 R, 3 2B, 2 3B, 13 RBI, 4 BB, 13 K, 2 SB, 2 HBP (.263/.293/.316)
  • RHP Luis Cedeno: 6 G, 0 GS, 5 IP, 8 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 3 BB, 2 K, 1 HB, 1 WP (9.00 ERA and 2.20 WHIP)
  • RHP Jaron Long: 7 G, 7 GS, 40.2 IP, 39 H, 12 R, 11 ER, 10 BB, 22 K, 2 HR, 2 WP (2.43 ERA and 1.20 WHIP) — up to 195.1 innings on the season
  • RHP Mark Montgomery: 14 G, 0 GS, 12.1 IP, 12 H, 9 R, 9 ER, 5 BB, 15 K, 2 HR (6.57 ERA and 1.38 WHIP) — he’s be available in the Rule 5 Draft again after being passed over last year
  • IF Thairo Estrada is also listed on a roster. He’s yet to get into a game yet though.

DotF: Sanchez continues to put up big numbers in AzFL

C Gary Sanchez was named MVP of the Arizona Fall League Fall Stars Game last weekend, going 1-for-3 with a two-run home run off Rockies LHP Kyle Freeland, the eighth overall pick in the 2014 draft. Sanchez also threw out a runner trying to steal second. Eric Longenhagen said he clocked his pop time at 1.82 seconds. That’s nuts. A 1.9-second pop time is great. The videos are above. Sanchez been a monster in the AzFL.

In other news, Matt Eddy has posted this year’s collection of six-year minor league free agents. Here are the Yankees farmhands now on the open market:

RHP: Andury Acevedo (AAA), Scottie Allen (AA), Joel de la Cruz (AAA), Diego Moreno (AAA), Wilking Rodriguez (AAA), Cesar Vargas (AAA)
LHP: Jose De Paula (AAA), Aaron Dott (AA)
C: Francisco Arcia (AA), Juan Graterol (AAA), Kyle Higashioka (AAA)
3B: Cole Figueroa (AAA)
SS: Ali Castillo (AAA), Jose Rosario (AA)
OF: Ericson Leonora (Hi A), Rico Noel (AAA)

1B Kyle Roller also became a free agent, says Eddy. Moreno, de la Cruz, DePaula, Figueroa, and Noel all spent time with the Yankees this past season. (De La Cruz was called up but didn’t pitch.) Allen was acquired from the Diamondbacks for Juan Miranda way back in the day. Castillo is probably the best prospect of the bunch but he’s a fringy light-hitting utility type at best. Good prospects don’t get to minor league free agency.

Thanks to the minor league free agents and the recent UTIL Jose Pirela trade, the crop of Yankees farmhands playing winter ball thinned out considerably this week. Here’s the weekly update.

Arizona Fall League

  • OF Tyler Austin: 18 G, 18-16 (.269), 11 R, 4 2B, 3 HR, 7 RBI, 9 BB, 16 K, 7 SB, 2 K (.269/.355/.463) — very quietly tied for fourth in the AzFL in steals
  • OF Dustin Fowler: 12 G, 15-48 (.313), 11 R, 2 2B, 1 HR, 6 RBI, 2 BB, 7 K, 7 SB (.313/.340/.417) — tied with Austin for fourth in steals
  • C Gary Sanchez: 18 G, 23-77 (.299), 12 R, 4 2B, 1 3B, 7 HR, 19 RBI, 3 BB, 16 K, 4 SB, 1 CS, 1 HBP (.299/.329/.619) — leads the league in homers and RBI by two each … last time someone hit 7+ homers in the AzFL was 2011, when Robbie Grossman (seven) and Mike Olt (13!) both did it … Sanchez has another week to pad his total
  • SS Tyler Wade: 14 G, 9-41 (.220), 6 R, 2 2B, 6 RBI, 6 BB, 7 K, 2 SB, 1 CS (.220/.313/.268) — life outside Single-A ball has been tough
  • RHP Domingo Acevedo: 6 G, 0 GS, 10 IP, 9 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 7 K, 1 HR, 2 HB (2.70 ERA and 1.20 WHIP) — all three runs came in one outing, so his other five appearances have been scoreless
  • LHP Ian Clarkin: 5 G, 5 GS, 20.1 IP, 26 H, 13 R, 13 ER, 13 BB, 12 K, 2 HR, 1 HB, 1 WP (5.75 ERA and 1.92 WHIP) — looks like he has one start left in the AzFL season
  • LHP Chaz Hebert: 5 G, 0 GS, 11.1 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 3 ER, 9 BB, 9 K, 1 WP (2.38 ERA and 1.41 WHIP) — Eric Longenhagen said Hebert topped out at 91 mph with a low-80s slider, an upper-70s changeup, plus a cutter in the Fall Stars Game … on the 20-80 scouting scale, Longenhagen gave the changeup a 55, the slider a 50, and the cutter a 45 … 50 is MLB average so that’s three pitches right at average … that’s really good!
  • LHP Tyler Webb: 8 G, 0 GS, 10 IP, 12 H, 8 R, 8 ER, 3 BB, 7 K, 1 HR, 1 WP (7.20 ERA and 1.50 WHIP) — he’s making up for lost time after missing the second half with a finger injury

Dominican Winter League

  • IF Abi Avelino: 1 G, 0-1, 1 K — appeared in one game two weeks ago and hasn’t played since … believe it or not, that’s pretty common in the Caribbean winter leagues … they’re very competitive and he may have been dropped from the active roster because the team didn’t think he could help them win
  • SS Jorge Mateo is listed on a roster but has not appeared in a game yet. At this point, I’m guessing he won’t play at all. He had a long season and he ended the year on the DL, remember, so the Yankees can hold him back from winter ball.

Mexican Pacific League

  • RHP Gio Gallegos: 12 G, 0 GS, 8 IP, 14 H, 11 R, 10 ER, 4 BB, 12 K, 2 HR, 1 WP (11.25 ERA and 2.25 WHIP) — woof
  • RHP Luis Niebla: 6 G, 6 GS, 30.2 IP, 24 H, 15 R, 14 ER, 17 BB, 20 K, 2 HR, 2 HB, 1 WP (4.11 ERA and 1.34 WHIP)

Roberto Clemente Professional Baseball League (Puerto Rico)

  • IF Cito Culver: 6 G, 2-19 (.105), 1 R, 1 BB, 6 K (.105/.150/.105)
  • RHP Bryan Mitchell: 3 G, 3 GS, 13.1 IP, 11 H, 6 R, 4 ER, 5 BB, 11 K, 1 HB, 1 WP (2.70 ERA and 1.20 WHIP) — the season doesn’t end until early-January but I don’t think Mitchell will pitch that long … either way, there’s still time for him to make a few more starts and throw a few more innings after working out of the bullpen for much of the regular season
  • 2B Angelo Gumbs is listed on a roster but has not appeared in a game yet.

Venezuelan Winter League

  • OF Ben Gamel: 23 G, 22-82 (.268), 8 R, 4 2B, 3 HR, 15 RBI, 10 BB, 17 K, 3 SB, 1 CS (.268/.337/.427) — between the regular season and winter ball, he’s up to 152 games played this year … long season
  • OF Teodoro Martinez: 28 G, 28-105 (.267), 14 R, 2 2B, 2 3B, 11 RBI, 4 BB, 12 K, 2 SB, 2 HBP (.267/.304/.324) — he’s still in the organization apparently … the Yankees signed him out of an independent league at midseason when they needed some healthy outfielders and that’s not usually a job with a lot of staying power
  • RHP Luis Cedeno: 5 G, 0 GS, 5 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 2 K, 1 HB, 1 WP (5.40 ERA and 1.80 WHIP) — remember when he was nursing that sub-1.00 ERA early in the season?
  • RHP Jaron Long: 6 G, 6 GS, 33.2 IP, 36 H, 12 R, 11 ER, 7 BB, 15 K, 2 HR, 2 WP (2.94 ERA and 1.28 WHIP) — he’s up to 188.1 innings on the year
  • RHP Mark Montgomery: 11 G, 0 GS, 9.2 IP, 8 H, 7 R, 7 ER, 5 BB, 13 K, 1 HR (6.52 ERA and 1.34 WHIP) — relief prospects will break your heart
  • IF Thairo Estrada is listed on a roster but has not yet played in a game.

DotF: Sanchez continues to rake in AzFL; Mitchell makes two starts in Puerto Rico

Both C Gary Sanchez and LHP Chaz Hebert will participate in the Arizona Fall League Fall Stars Game. Here are the East and West rosters. The AzFL Fall Stars Game will be played at 8pm ET tonight. You can watch live on both MLB.com and MLB Network. Here’s the weekly winter ball update.

Arizona Fall League

  • OF Tyler Austin: 13 G, 13-48 (.271), 7 R, 2B, 2 HR, 6 RBI, 6 BB, 1 K, 4 SB, 2 CS (.271/.352/.438) — nice showing in the AzFL after a poor summer
  • OF Dustin Fowler: 8 G, 10-34 (.294), 9 R, 2 2B, 1 HR, 6 RBI, 1 BB, 5 K, 5 SB — looking forward to seeing what he does next year … he has tools and was a two-sport guy in high school, so he’s still figuring out this baseball thing
  • C Gary Sanchez: 15 G, 21-64 (.328), 10 R, 3 2B, 1 3B, 6 HR, 17 RBI, 2 BB, 13 K, 3 SB, 1 CS, 1 HBP (.328/.353/.688) — leads the league in homers (by two) and total bases (by eleven)
  • SS Tyler Wade: 12 G, 7-36 (.194), 4 R, 2 2B, 5 RBI, 5 BB, 6 K, 1 SB, 1 CS (.194/.286/.250) — curious to see how he handles Double-A pitching next year, that’ll be a big test for him
  • RHP Domingo Acevedo: 4 G, 4 GS, 6.1 IP 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 5 K, 1 HR (4.26 ERA, 0.95 WHIP) — I wonder how quickly they’ll look to move him up the ladder next season since he turns 22 in March
  • LHP Ian Clarkin: 4 G, 4 GS, 16.1 IP, 22 H, 11 R, 11 ER, 10 BB, 10 K, 1 HR, 1 HB, 1 WP (6.06 ERA, 1.96 WHIP) — the results stink but I’m just glad he’s healthy
  • LHP Chaz Hebert: 4 G, 0 GS, 9 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 5 BB, 8 K (1.00 ERA, 1.22 WHIP) — he’s Rule 5 Draft eligible and I’m really curious to see what happens … he had a pretty nice year (2.45 ERA and 3.13 FIP in 143 innings at mostly High-A Tampa)
  • LHP Tyler Webb: 6 G, 0 GS, 7.2 IP, 9 H, 7 R, 7 ER, 3 BB, 5 K, 1 HR, 1 WP (8.22 ERA, 1.57 WHIP)

Dominican Summer League

  • IF Abi Avelino: 1 G, 0-1, 1 K
  • RHP Andury Acevedo: 2 G, 0 GS, 1.2 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 0 K, 1 WP (5.40 ERA, 2.40 WHIP)
  • RHP Joel De La Cruz: 1 G, 0 GS, 2 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 K (9.00 ERA, 1.50 WHIP) — remember when he was on the MLB roster for like two days this year but didn’t pitch? what a time to be alive
  • UTIL Jose Rosario and SS Jorge Mateo are on rosters but have not appeared in a game yet.

Mexican Pacific League

  • OF Rico Noel: 9 G, 4-38 (.105), 5 R, 2 2B, 1 RBI, 4 BB, 11 K, 5 SB, 1 CS (.105/.190/.158) — Rico’s a runner, he ain’t a hitter
  • RHP Gio Gallegos: 10 G, 0 GS, 7 IP, 13 H, 9 R, 9 ER, 3 BB, 11 K, 2 HR, 1 WP (11.57 ERA, 2.29 WHIP)
  • RHP Luis Niebla: 5 G, 5 GS, 25.2 IP, 18 H, 11 R, 10 ER, 11 BB, 15 K, 1 HR, 2 HB, 1 WP (3.51 ERA, 1.13 WHIP)
  • RHP Cesar Vargas: 12 G, 0 GS, 9.2 IP, 13 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 1 BB, 13 K, 3 HR, 1 HB (3.72 ERA, 1.45 WHIP)

Roberto Clemente Professional Baseball League (Puerto Rico)

  • IF Cito Culver: 4 G, 2-12 (.167), 1 BB, 5 K (.167/.231/.167) — might be time to try him on the mound
  • RHP Bryan Mitchell: 2 G 2 GS, 8.2 IP, 8 H, 5 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 8 K, 1 HB (3.12 ERA, 1.15 WHIP) — glad he’s getting some more innings after spending a big chunk of the season in the bullpen
  • 2B Angelo Gumbs is listed on a roster but has not appeared in a game yet.

Venezuelan Winter League

  • C Francisco Arcia: 17 G, 13-44 (.295), 3 R, 3 2B, 1 3B, 6 RBI, 7 BB, 8 K (.295/.392/.409) — I’m pretty sure he’s a minor league free agent this offseason, so he might not even be in the organization anymore
  • OF Ben Gamel: 18 G, 16-63 (.254), 8 R, 4 2B, 3 HR, 12 RBI, 8 BB, 14 K, 2 SB, 1 CS (.254/.329/.460) — he’s Rule 5 Draft eligible and I think he’ll be added to the 40-man roster … the deadline to do so is two weeks from yesterday
  • OF Ericson Leonora: 14 G, 4-22 (.182), 5 R, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 5 K, 1 SB (.182/.217/.318)
  • OF Teodoro Martinez: 22 G, 21-82 (.256), 14 R, 2 3B, 7 RBI, 4 BB, 11 K, 2 SB, 2 HBP (.256/.307/.305)
  • UTIL Jose Pirela: 13 G, 21-48 (.438), 12 R, 5 2B, 1 3B, 1 HR, 9 RBI, 9 BB, 3 K (.438/.526/.646) — he’s been intentionally walked three times already!
  • RHP Luis Cedeno: 4 G, 0 GS, 3.2 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 B, 1 K, 1 HB, 1 WP (4.91 ERA, 1.36 WHIP)
  • RHP Jaron Long: 4 G, 4 GS, 23.2 IP, 20 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 4 BB, 11 K, 1 HR (1.90 ERA, 1.01 WHIP)
  • RHP Mark Montgomery: 9 G, 0 GS, 7.2 IP, 7 H, 7 R, 7 ER, 5 BB, 10 K, 1 HR (8.22 ERA, 1.57 WHIP) — he went unpicked in the Rule 5 Draft last year and I’m guessing the Yankees will bet that’ll happen again this winter
  • IF Thairo Estrada is listed on a roster but has not yet played in a game.

DotF: Sanchez and Pirela off to great starts in winter ball

Got some minor league notes and links to pass along before we get to the first round of performance updates from winter ball:

  • Keith Law (subs. req’d) posted some Arizona Fall League scouting notes, saying LHP Ian Clarkin “looked great in a four-inning stint” in his first game of the year. “Clarkin was 89-93 mph, mostly 90-92, for his entire outing, with a plus curveball that he really controlled well, 73-75 with tight spin. His changeup needs some work, and was actually better at 82 mph (where it had more action) than at 85-86 mph (where it was more like a bad fastball),” wrote Law. He added Clarkin’s ceiling as a potential No. 2 starter remains unchanged despite the elbow injury.
  • In a separate post (subs. req’d), Law says RHP Domingo Acevedo was “throwing 94-98 mph” with bad command, plus an 84-87 mph slider that “took a lot of effort for him to get to it.” He kinda sorta likened Acevedo to Dellin Betances because of his “high-effort delivery and long arm swing as well as a general lack of athleticism.”
  • Sam Dykstra posted some really simple Triple-A park factors for both 2015 and 2013-15. Once again, Triple-A Scranton’s PNC Field ranked among the toughest parks to hit, with a 0.876 (!) park factor this year. That means it suppressed offense to 87.6% of the league average. It was 0.926 from 2013-15. The four full season affiliates play in what have historically been pitchers’ parks.
  • Some transaction news from Matt Eddy: both IF Gregorio Petit and RHP Kyle Davies elected free agent after the end of the season, as expected. Also, Eddy reports the Yankees signed 16-year-old Venezuelan OF Jhon Moronta. I can’t find much about him, just this.

Now on to the performance updates from fall and winter ball, which take place at the same time of year. As a reminder, Ramiro Pena used to crush winter ball every year. The guy was like Babe Ruth down there. Don’t take the numbers too seriously. Small samples and the caliber of competition is not good.

Arizona Fall League

  • OF Tyler Austin: 8 G, 9-29 (.310), 6 R, 2 2B, 2 HR, 4 RBI, 4 BB, 7 K, 1 SB, 1 CS (.310/.394/.586) — had a rough regular season — that included getting dropped from the 40-man roster — so it would be great if he could rake here and head into the offseason feeling good about things
  • OF Dustin Fowler: 4 G, 5-18 (.278), 4 R, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 4 K, 3 SB (.278/.316/.278)
  • C Gary Sanchez: 10 G, 17-44 (.386), 7 R, 2 2B, 1 3B, 5 HR, 15 RBI, 2 BB, 6 K, 2 SB, 1 CS (.386/.404/.818) — leads the AzFL in homers (by one), RBI (by five), and total bases (by five)
  • IF Tyler Wade: 9 G, 5-29 (.172), 2 R, 2 2B, 5 RBI, 1 BB, 4 K, 1 SB, 1 CS (.172/.219/.276)
  • LHP Ian Clarkin: 3 IP, 3 GS, 12.1 IP, 15 H, 7 R, 7 ER, 9 BB, 8 K, 1 HB, 1 WP (5.11 ERA, 1.95 WHIP) — ugly numbers, but he’s a) healthy!, and b) shaking off an entire season of rust
  • LHP Chaz Hebert: 5 G, 0 GS, 8 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 4 K, 1 HR (4.50 ERA, 1.13 WHIP) — he had a breakout regular season (2.46 ERA and 3.07 FIP in 139 innings) and is Rule 5 Draft eligible, plus he’s left-handed, but I’ll be surprised if the Yankees protect him … 40-man roster space is pretty tight
  • LHP Tyler Webb: 5 G, 0 GS, 6 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 0 BB, 4 K, 1 HR (4.50 ERA, 0.83 WHIP) — first game action since late-June … he missed a bunch of time with a tendon problem in his hand

Dominican Winter League

  • IF Abi Avelino: 1 G, 0-1
  • RHP Andury Acevedo: 3 G, 0 GS, 4.1 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 1 HR, 2 HB (6.23 ERA, 1.15 WHIP)
  • RHP Joel De La Cruz: 1 G, 0 GS, 2 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 K (9.00 ERA, 1.50 WHIP)
  • UTIL Jose Rosario and SS Jorge Mateo are listed on rosters but have yet to appear in a game. They might not play at all, especially Mateo, who ended the regular season on the DL. (Albeit with a minor injury.) They’re listed on the rosters because the clubs hold their winter ball rights.

Mexican Pacific League

  • OF Rico Noel: 3 G, 1-12 (.083), 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 2 K, 1 SB (.083/.154/.169) — he’s a runner, not a hitter
  • RHP Gio Gallegos: 8 G, 0 GS, 5.2 IP, 12 H, 9 R, 9 ER, 2 BB, 9 K, 2 HR, 1 WP (14.29 ERA, 2.47 WHIP) — he’s allowed multiple runs in four of those eight outings, so it’s not just one disaster outing skewing the numbers
  • RHP Luis Niebla: 4 G, 4 GS, 24 IP, 15 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 7 BB, 14 K, 1 HR, 1 HB, 1 WP (1.88 ERA, 0.92 WHIP)
  • RHP Cesar Vargas: 8 G, 0 GS, 7 IP, 9 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 11 K, 1 HR (1.29 ERA, 0.92 WHIP)

Roberto Clemente Professional Baseball League (Puerto Rico)

  • RHP Bryan Mitchell, IF Cito Culver, and 2B Angelo Gumbs are listed on rosters but have not yet appeared in a game. The season just started yesterday. Mitchell threw only 104.2 innings during the regular season. He might be down here to get some more under his belt. His career high is 145.1 innings set back in 2013.

Venezuelan Winter League

  • C Francisco Arcia: 12 G, 11-32 (.344), 3R, 3 2B, 1 3B, 5 RBI, 5 BB, 4 K (.344/.432/.500)
  • IF Ali Castillo: 4 G, 3-15 (.200), 2 R, 1 2B, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 3 K (.200/.294/.267)
  • OF Ben Gamel: 13 G, 13-48 (.271), 7 R, 4 2B, 2 HR, 10 RBI, 7 BB, 12 K, 1 SB, 1 CS (.271/.351/.479) — following up his excellent regular season with a nice showing in winter ball … I’m sure the Yankees were happy to let him play winter ball this year, it gives them more time to evaluate him before deciding whether to protect him from the Rule 5 Draft this offseason
  • OF Ericson Leonora: 12 G, 4-22 (.182), 5 R, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 5 K, 1 SB, 1 HBP (.182/.217/.318)
  • OF Teodoro Martinez: 18 G, 20-69 (.290), 2 3B, 7 RBI, 3 BB, 8 K, 2 SB (.290/.318/.348) — I’m not even sure if he’s still in the organization, to be honest … the Yankees signed him at midseason when they needed some outfielders to help cover for injuries and promotions … that’s usually a part-time gig
  • UTIL Jose Pirela: 6 G, 11-20 (.550), 5 R, 1 2B, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 5 BB, 1 K (.550/.640/.750) — he always rakes in winter ball
  • RHP Luis Cedeno: 3 G, 0 GS, 2.2 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 1 K (0.00 ERA, 1.13 WHIP)
  • RHP Jaron Long: 4 G, 4 GS, 23.2 IP, 20 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 4 BB, 11 K, 1 HR (1.90 ERA, 1.01 WHIP) — between the regular season and winter ball, the ex-hitting coach’s kid has thrown 178.1 innings this year
  • RHP Mark Montgomery: 8 G, 0 GS, 6.2 IP, 6 H, 7 R, 7 ER, 5 BB, 9 K, 1 HR (9.45 ERA, 1.65 WHIP) — allowed three runs in two of those eight outings … everything else has been pretty good
  • IF Thairo Estrada is listed on a roster but has not yet played in a game.