Yesterday, Baseball America reported the Yankees signing of outfielder Reid Gorecki. Today, Joel Sherman adds two new names to the list of minor league signings: Outfielder David Winfree and left-hander Royce Ring.
Winfree is an interesting, Shelley Duncan-type addition. He has a lot of power from the right side and played pretty well last season in his first shot at Triple-A, hitting .273 with 14 home runs and 31 doubles (he also struck out 88 times and drew only 28 walks). Right now, Duncan is a more polished hitter, but Winfree’s only 24 and could thrive under hitting coach Butch Wynegar. He played third base early in his career, but has been strictly a corner outfielder the past two seasons. Baseball America ranked Winfree as the Twins No. 28 prospect entering last season, writing that he had as much power as anyone in the system other than Angel Morales.
As for Ring, his name is probably familiar. He has 94 games of big league experience with the Mets, Padres and Braves. Last year he was in the Cardinals system and had a 3.04 ERA in Triple-A Memphis, with a 3-to-2 groundout-to-flyout ratio. Those are solid numbers for the hitter friendly Pacific Coast League. Lefties had a .208/.296/.264 line against him. In his major league career, lefties have hit .229 against him. As far as Triple-A left-handed pitching depth goes, Ring is a good guy to have around.
If you click on the Sherman link, you’ll notice that he’s expecting the same thing Sam and I are expecting: that Johnny Damon won’t sign back with the Yankees. Sherman says the Yankees are targeting Xavier Nady and Reed Johnson but have only $2 million to spend in left field (at least, that’s what they’re telling agents).