Just wanted pass along a good Yankee interview that has a few of the highlights from the season.
Scott Patterson, he of the 77.1 IP, 45 H, 9 ER, 15 BB, 92 K line in 2007, was added to the Yanks 40-man roster yesterday. The chances of seeing the 28-yr old, 6′-7″, 250 lb former Indy baller in the Bronx next year just went up exponentially. Quick skinny: he’s all fastball with a straight over-the-top delivery – the ball looks like it’s dropping out of the sky. Not much of a breaking ball, so he’ll have to be good with his fastball command. Sits at 91-92 with sink, but the downward plane makes it look like 97.
The 40-man roster has to be set Tuesday in regards to the Rule V draft. The biggest names the Yankees have to protect are Steven White, Marcos Vechionacci and Mike Gardner, but guys like Grant Duff, Matt Carson, Eric Hacker and Phil Coke are also eligible, just unlikely to be picked. Once the rosters are set, I’ll look around and see if I can dig up a couple of guys the Yankees might target.
There are currently 4 spots open on the 40-man, although the Yanks need 2 spots if they plan on bringing Mo back and having Pettitte return. They could fill the roster up now and DFA someone in January or February to bring Pettitte back (later Sean Henn!), and/or released Carl Pavano to free up another spot. They can’t stick Pavano or Andrew Brackman on the 60-day DL until the season starts. I think they’ll protect White and Gardner and risk it with Vech, but I never thought they’d protect Jeff Kennard like they did last year, so what do I know.
(hat tip to Chad Jennings)
AFL Stats: AVG 343 OBP 433 SLG 380
Background: The book on Gardner would have you believe that he’s a one dimensional slap-hitter that needs to outrun ground balls in order to get on base. That is simply not the case. According to Firstinning, he bunted in only 2% of his AAA appearances last season and his line drive rate was 18%. However, one area he needs to improve is being more aggressive early in the count. In the past, it seemed like his first objective was to draw a walk and if he got two strikes against him he would fight pitches off and hope that he gets another good pitch to hit. So his main goal heading into the AFL was to become a more aggressive hitter by looking for his pitch earlier in the count. This was very important for him to learn because most pitchers at the major league level will make him earn his way on base.
Offense: Gardner is the type of player that won’t blow you away with his stats but when you watch him on a daily basis he can look like one of the most dominant players on the field. [Read more…]
Well, maybe just a bit. But that didn’t stop RAB fave Keith Law from posting his Top 60 Prospects for next year’s draft. I plan on getting into some draft stuff in a few weeks, but this’ll wet your tongue.
As a reminder, the Yanks have the 28th pick in the draft, and could still pick up an additional 7 picks if Pettitte, The Viz, Mo and A-Rod sign elsewhere. And yes, I think A-Rod will sign elsewhere. Don’t buy into Boras’ bullshit.
Zach McAllister | RHP
McAllister grew up just outside of Peoria, IL, in the small suburb of Chillicothe. His father Steve is the Central Region scouting supervisor for the Diamondbacks. McAllister was a star in both baseball and basketball while at Illinois Valley Central High School, but it was clear from the get-go that his future was on the diamond and not the hardwood.
AzFL Peoria (5-3 win over Surprise)
Brett Gardner: 1 for 4, 1 R, 1 K
Juan Miranda: 2 for 4, 1 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI – tied for the league lead with 5 homers, second with 17 steaks
Steven “don’t call me” White: 4 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 3 K – someone out there has to get that reference…
HWB Honolulu (2-2 tie with Waikiki)
Austin Jackson: 1 for 4, 1 K – thrown out at third
Anthony Claggett: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 0 K – lefties are hitting .448 off him, righties .225
FYI – the Guess the PED Users game is kaput. It turns out the report claiming that 11 free agents will be named PED users in the Mitchell Report was inaccurate. Good thing I didn’t spend too much thinking up a prize.
Pinstripes Plus is reporting that Mark Melancon has returned to game action at Dominican Instructional League, and topped out at 92 in his first appearance.
AzFL Peoria (5-2 loss to Surprise)
Brett Gardner: 0 for 3, 2 BB, 2 K – 6 for his last 27 after going 6 for his previous 9
Juan Miranda: 0 for 3, 1 BB, 1 K
Steven Jackson: 1 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 1 K – one of the walks was intentional, not that it makes a difference
Peoria manager (and Double-A Trenton coach) Tony Franklin was tossed for arguing a call on the bases in the 9th.
HWB Honolulu (6-1 loss to Waikiki)
Austin Jackson: 0 for 3, 1 BB, 2 K – 17 for his 30 hits have gone for extra bases
Bradley Suttle: 0 for 4, 2 K – 1 for his last 22
George Kontos: 4 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 6 K, 5-1 GB/FB – 39 K in 29 IP
Be sure to play our “Guess the PED users” game!