Archive for Minors

Got some notes to pass along:

  • RHP Ty Hensley threw a bullpen session today, according to his Twitter feed. He missed all of last year after having surgery on both hips, and he’s been slowed by a hernia early this year. Not sure how long he’s been throwing off a mound.
  • RHP Shane Greene will make his first start of the season with Triple-A Scranton on Thursday. He’s been up and down a few times and hasn’t pitched much. Also, IF Zelous Wheeler (back) is close to returning. [Donnie Collins]
  • And finally, here is Keith Law’s write-up on last night’s Low-A Charleston game. It’s behind the Insider paywall, but here’s the short version: RHP Luis Severino and OF Aaron Judge were very impressive, SS Abi Avelino and 2B Gosuke Katoh not so much.

Triple-A Scranton (6-5 win over Buffalo, walk-off style)

  • LF Ramon Flores: 2-5, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 2 K
  • 3B Scott Sizemore: 2-5, 2 R, 1 RBI, 1 K
  • RF Zoilo Almonte: 1-5, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 2 K — walk-off double
  • CF Adonis Garcia: 2-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI — 15 hits in his last 41 at-bats (.366)
  • DH Ronnie Mustelier: 2-4, 1 2B, 1 K
  • C Francisco Arcia: 1-4, 1 2B, 1 K, 1 E (throwing) — C Austin Romine was supposed to start but did not play according to Donnie Collins … he was not on the bench or lined up for the anthem either … not sure what’s up there, but he could be sick or something
  • RHP Brian Gordon: 5.1 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 4 K, 1 WP, 4/8 GB/FB — 59 of 94 pitches were strikes (63%)

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Categories : Down on the Farm
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RHP Bryan Mitchell was named the Double-A Eastern League Pitcher of the Week. Not a bad week for him. He struck out 12 in six innings on Monday, turned 23 on Saturday, got called up to the big leagues on Sunday, and was named Pitcher of the Week today. That one day in the show gave him a $41,000 raise for the year. Not bad. (h/t Andy in Sunny Daytona)

According to Josh Norris, VP of Baseball Ops Mark Newman said OF Slade Heathcott (knee) and 1B Greg Bird (back) are about two weeks from returning while RHP Danny Burawa (unknown) and LHP Nik Turley (arm) are still a ways off. No word on RHP Ty Hensley (hernia), RHP Jose Campos (taking it easy), and RHP Jose Ramirez (oblique).

Triple-A Scranton (4-2 loss to Lehigh Valley)

  • DH Corban Joseph, 3B Russ Canzler & CF Adonis Garcia: all 1-4 — CoJo drove in a run and struck out … Canzler struck out and committed a fielding error … Garcia scored a run
  • RF Ramon Flores, LF Zoilo Almonte & C Austin Romine: all 0-3, 1 BB — Zoilo stole a base … Flores and Romine both struck out once
  • 2B Jose Pirela: 1-2, 1 R, 2 BB, 1 SB — first two walks of the season
  • RHP Chris Leroux: 4 IP, 5 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 6/1 GB/FB — 48 of 70 pitches were strikes (69%)
  • LHP Fred Lewis: 1.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 2 K, 1 WP, 2 HB, 3/1 GB/FB – 28 of 43 pitches were strikes (65%)
  • RHP Mark Montgomery: 1.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 0/1 GB/FB — 14 of 20 pitches were strikes

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Categories : Down on the Farm
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Triple-A Scranton (9-4 loss to Lehigh Valley)

  • 2B Jose Pirela: 1-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 K – seven hits in his last 18 at-bats (.389)
  • LF Zoilo Almonte: 1-4, 1 R, 2 RBI, 1 K — 13 hits in his last 33 at-bats (.394)
  • RF Adonis Garcia: 1-4, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 K
  • DH Ronnie Mustelier: 1-4, 1 RBI
  • RHP Caleb Cotham: 4.1 IP, 6 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 5/3 GB/FB — 53 of 76 pitches were strikes (70%)
  • RHP Shane Greene: 1.2 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 1/0 GB/FB — 24 of 32 pitches were strikes (75%) … only his second appearance of the year after going up and down for the first few weeks

Double-A Trenton, High-A Tampa, and Low-A Charleston all had a scheduled off-day. Weird for a Sunday, even with the holiday.

Categories : Down on the Farm
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Update: The second game of Low-A Charleston’s doubleheader is over and has been added to the recap.

RHP Danny Burawa has been placed on the DL for an unknown reason, according to Donnie Collins. He had a wild (four walks in 1.2 innings) and extended (51 pitches) outing on Thursday. Burawa missed the entire 2012 season with a torn oblique.

Triple-A Scranton (4-3 win over Lehigh Valley)

  • CF-RF Ramon Flores: 0-4, 1 K
  • 2B Jose Pirela & 1B Russ Canzler: both 2-4, 1 R — Canzler doubled and struck out
  • LF Zoilo Almonte: 1-4, 1 R
  • 3B Adonis Garcia: 1-4, 1 R, 1 RBI, 2 K
  • C Austin Romine: 0-3, 1 PB
  • RHP Bruce Billings: 7 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 6 K, 1 WP, 1 Balk, 7/6 GB/FB — 67 of 104 pitches were strikes (64%) … picked a runner off second
  • RHP Jim Miller: 2 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 2 K, 2/1 GB/FB — 20 of 22 pitches were strikes (91%) … guess he’s the new closer with RHP Matt Daley in the big leagues

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Categories : Down on the Farm
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Sorry for the lack of a minor league update last night, but thankfully commenter Get Phelps Up picked up the slack. Here is his recap. The highlight of the night was OF Aaron Judge‘s first professional homer, which you can see in the video above. It was a bomb.

In other news, RHP Al Aceves was added to the Triple-A Scranton roster according to Chad Jennings. He had been getting stretched out in Extended Spring Training. Also, RHP Rafael DePaula placed tenth on this week’s Prospect Hot Sheet.

Triple-A Scranton (5-2 loss to Lehigh Valley in eleven innings)

  • RF Ramon Flores, DH Corban Joseph & SS Carmen Angelini: all 0-5 — Flores walked, scored a run, struck out, and threw a runner out at the plate … Angelini struck out
  • 2B Jose Pirela: 2-6, 1 R, 1 E (throwing)
  • CF Zoilo Almonte & 1B Russ Canzler: both 1-4, 1 K — Almonte walked, Canzler drove in a run
  • 3B Adonis Garcia: 4-5 — yep, third base … he’s been working out on the infield since winter ball in an effort to improve his versatility
  • LF Ronnie Mustelier: 1-5
  • C Austin Romine: 0-3, 2 BB, 2 K
  • RHP Al Aceves: 5 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 6/3 GB/FB — 53 of 79 pitches were strikes (67%) … right back where it all started, in DotF
  • RHP Shane Greene: 1 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 2 K, 1/0 GB/FB — 13 of 20 pitches were strikes (65%) … believe it or not, this is his first appearance of the season
  • RHP Preston Claiborne: 1 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 1 K, 1/0 GB/FB — 15 of 29 pitches were strikes (52%)
  • LHP Fred Lewis: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 1/0 GB/FB — 15 of 29 pitches were strikes (52%)
  • RHP Mark Montgomery: 1 IP, zeroes, 0/2 GB/FB — seven of 13 pitches were strikes (54%) … still super early, but only six strikeouts in 6.1 innings so far

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Categories : Down on the Farm
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2014 Draft: Jordan Brink

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Jordan Brink | RHP

Undrafted out of Central High School in Fresno three years ago, Brink spent his freshman year and most of his sophomore year as a position player at Fresno State. He didn’t hit (.224/.292/.299 in 389 plate appearances) and wound up on the mound. Brink had a 3.92 ERA and a 65/25 K/BB in 59.2 innings last year, and this spring he has a 2.28 ERA with a 40/31 K/BB in 55.1 innings while working exclusively as a pitcher.

Scouting Report
Despite a smallish frame — listed at 6-foot-1 and 200 lbs. — Brink offers big time power stuff, including a fastball that hit 96 mph during fall workouts and has sat 91-93 this spring. His best pitch is a hard and sharp curveball in the low-80s that sometimes looks like a slider. A good changeup rounds out his three-pitch mix. Brink is said to be a top notch competitor with off the charts makeup, and even though he hasn’t been pitching full-time very long, his delivery is compact and repeatable.

Keith Law (subs. req’d) ranked Brink as the 48th best prospect in the draft class in his most recent rankings. Baseball America (no subs. req’d) did not include him in their top 50. This draft is loaded with college pitching, enough that someone like Brink could slide due to his height and unimpressive performance this spring (K/BB, specifically). The Yankees don’t pick until the second round (55th overall) because of their offseason shopping spree and I think landing Brink would be a real coup. He has a fresh arm, he already throws three pitches, and he’s the kind of competitor they love.

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As expected, both RHP Chris Leroux and UTIL Ronnie Mustelier were activated and added to the Triple-A Scranton roster, according to Chad Jennings. Leroux was getting stretched out in Extended Spring Training and Mustelier was out with a hamstring injury. C Luis Torrens was transferred to the Short Season Staten Island roster according to Josh Norris. That’s a paper move. He’s reportedly under the weather and this allows them to replace him on the roster without putting him on the DL for a week. Torrens is not actually going to Staten Island or anything.

Triple-A Scranton (8-2 loss to Buffalo)

  • CF Ramon Flores: 1-4, 1 BB, 2 K
  • 2B Jose Pirela: 1-5, 1 K
  • RF Zoilo Almonte: 2-5, 1 E (fielding) — threw a runner out at second … 8-for-17 (.471) in his last four games
  • 1B Corban Joseph: 2-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 2 K
  • LF Ronnie Mustelier: 0-4, 1 K
  • C Austin Romine: 2-4, 1 2B, 1 K, 2 PB
  • RHP Chris Leroux: 2.1 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 4/0 GB/FB — 34 of 61 pitches were strikes (56%)
  • LHP Fred Lewis: 1 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 0 K, 1/0 GB/FB — 10 of 18 pitches were strikes (56%)
  • RHP Preston Claiborne: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 1/0 GB/FB — 11 of 14 pitches were strikes (79%)

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Categories : Down on the Farm
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2014 Draft: Matt Imhof

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Matt Imhof | LHP

Imhof, 20, is a Bay Area kid from Fremont. He was not drafted out of Mission San Jose High School, mostly because he started out as a full-time first baseman and didn’t seriously get into pitching until his sophomore year. Imhof was a swingman as a freshman at Cal Poly (3.04 ERA in 47.1 innings) before moving into the rotation as a sophomore (2.74 ERA in 101.2 innings). This spring he has a 2.07 ERA with 88/22 K/BB in 61 innings across nine starts. He currently leads Division I in strikeouts and is second with 12.98 K/9.

Scouting Report
Listed at 6-foot-6 and 220 lbs., Imhof usually sits in the low-90s with his fastball but will occasionally touch 95 mph. The pitch has some natural cutting action in on righties even though he delivers the ball almost straight over the top. An upper-70/low-80s slurve — not quite a curve, not quite a slider — is his go-to secondary pitch. Imhof has been working on a changeup since last year but it is still nascent. The coaching staff at Cal Poly has helped him smooth out and develop consistency with his mechanics, and that has allowed him to better command his pitches, especially down in the zone.

Baseball America (no subs. req’d) and Keith Law (subs. req’d) ranked Imhof as the 35th and 43rd best prospect in the draft class in their latest rankings, respectively. This draft is very deep in college pitching and while 6-foot-6 lefties usually don’t get lost in the crowd, Imhof’s lack of a third pitch could cause him to slide a bit in favor of more polished arms. The Yankees don’t pick until the second round (55th overall) this year and while Imhof is risky, he also offers quite a bit of upside as a high-strikeout southpaw.

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According to Donnie Collins, it seems likely RHP Chris Leroux and UTIL Ronnie Mustelier will soon join Triple-A Scranton. Leroux was in Extended Spring Training getting stretched out while Mustelier is returning from a hamstring injury. He’ll presumably fill the spot vacated by the just called up IF Scott Sizemore.

Meanwhile, Triple-A Scranton‘s doubleheader was not rained out today. It was snowed out instead. Seriously. One game will be made up as part of a doubleheader on Thursday, the other in early-July. They’re up to ten games played and eight postponements now.

Double-A Trenton‘s game was postponed due to wet grounds. They will make this up as part of a doubleheader tomorrow.

High-A Tampa (8-7 loss to Clearwater)

  • CF Jake Cave: 1-5, 1 K, 1 E (fielding)
  • SS Cito Culver: 1-5, 1 R, 3 K, 1 E (fielding) — already six errors on the season
  • 3B Eric Jagielo: 2-4, 3 R, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 BB — 13 hits in his last 40 at-bats (.325) with two doubles and four homers
  • DH Dante Bichette Jr.: 2-4, 2 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K — up to .333/.500/.472 in 12 games … yep
  • C Peter O’Brien: 1-3, 1 R, 3 RBI
  • 2B Angelo Gumbs: 2-4, 1 2B, 1 RBI — 9-for-17 (.529) in his last four games
  • LHP Eric Wooten: 4.1 IP, 9 H, 7 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 2 K, 8/2 GB/FB
  • RHP Phil Wetherell: 2 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 6/0 GB/FB

Low-A Charleston (6-2 win over Greenville)

  • SS Abi Avelino: 2-4, 1 R, 1 BB, 1 SB, 1 E (missed catch)
  • DH Tyler Wade: 4-5, 3 R, 2 2B, 2 RBI, 1 K, 1 SB – had four hits in his previous 31 at-bats
  • RF Aaron Judge: 3-5, 1 R, 2 RBI — 7-for-16 (.438) in his last four games
  • 3B Miguel Andujar: 1-4, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 E (throwing)
  • LF Michael O’Neill: 2-4, 1 BB, 1 SB
  • C Luis Torrens: 0-1 — left the game in the third inning for an unknown reason, so he either got hurt or traded in all likelihood … UPDATE: Josh Norris says Torrens was just under the weather, no big deal
  • 2B Gosuke Katoh: 0-3, 2 BB, 3 K — no contact kinda day
  • RHP Luis Severino: 3.2 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 3 BB, 4 K, 4/3 GB/FB – 40 of 67 pitches were strikes (60%)
  • RHP Jaron Long: 5.1 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 8 K, 1 WP, 6/0 GB/FB — 57 of 80 pitches were strikes (71%) … the hitting coach’s kid can pitch a little, it seems
Categories : Down on the Farm
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2014 Draft: Derek Fisher

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Derek Fisher | OF

Fisher is from a small town in Pennsylvania, a few miles outside Harrisburg, and he was drafted in the sixth round (204th overall pick) out of high school in the 2011 draft by the Rangers. He reportedly declined a seven-figure bonus offer and instead followed through on his commitment to Virginia. After hitting .290/.386/.495 during his first two years at school, Fisher is hitting .333/.393/.451 through 14 games this spring.

Scouting Report
Fisher, who is listed at 6-foot-3 and 210 lbs., is one of the best athletes among this year’s crop of college players. That says more about the draft class than his ability, unfortunately. Fisher is a good but not great runner, and he’s already relegated to left field because of his poor arm and okay at best instincts. He is good enough defensively to stick in the outfield long-term as opposed to moving to first base or even DH, but forget about center or right.

Fisher’s draft stock is built around his left-handed swing, which is quick and compact. He shows lots of power in batting practice but has not yet to fully carry it over into games because of a tendency to drop his hands and let his swing get a little loopy. His approach and ability to recognize breaking balls need work. If Fisher can learn to take his power from batting practice into games, he has all the look of a future middle of the order guy who can swat 30+ homers at his peak.

In their latest rankings, Keith Law (subs. req’d) and Baseball America (no subs. req’d) ranked Fisher as the 24th and 39th best prospect in the draft. However, Fisher’s draft stock has taken a hit because he broke the hamate bone in his right wrist sliding into a base recently. He is not expected to return until mid-to-late May, right before the draft. Teams won’t have much of an opportunity to scout him this spring.

Fisher came into the spring looking like a top 20 pick but is now likely to slide out of the first round because of the injury. He is a prime target for teams with extra picks or teams hoping to land a top talent in the second round after surrendering their first rounder to sign a free agent. The latter describes the Yankees, whose first pick is in the second round (55th overall) after their offseason spending spree. They seem to have renewed interest in college bats these last two years and there’s a chance Fisher will fall into their laps this spring. It’s a stretch, but not impossible.

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