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A New York Yankees blog by Chad Jennings and the staff of The Journal News

Yankees make some early minor league moves

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Misc on Oct 27, 2012 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

A few early minor league transactions from Baseball America. Usually signings at this time of year are incredibly minor, but these minor league deals actually carry a little bit of significance.

Signed: LHP Juan Cedeno (re-signed), LHP Francisco Rondon (re-signed), OF Abe Almonte (re-signed), OF Cody Johnson (re-signed)
Released: OF Billy Hart

The two names that stand out here are Cedeno and Almonte.

Last winter, the Yankees took a shot on the lefty Cedeno, who hadn’t played in a big league organization since 2008 and had never played higher than Double-A ball. The Yankees scouts clearly saw something they liked because the Yankees gave Cedeno an invitation to big league camp, then made him a prominent part of the Triple-A bullpen. Lefties hit .240 against him, and he carried a 2.81 ERA at the end of the year. Shouldn’t expect him to be a major contributor next season, but he could be legitimate big league bullpen depth (or a potential Rule 5 pick if the Yankees don’t protect him).

Almonte is coming off his best professional season since rookie ball in 2007. He hit .276/.350/.392 in Double-A while stealing 30 bases and playing all three outfield positions. He’s a switch hitter, but his splits were drastic this season. Almonte hit .310 against righties and only .190 against lefties. His second-half numbers were pretty bad. He’s somewhat significant because Almonte once carried some prospect status — initially as a second baseman — and he’s still just 23 and there’s always been a little something to like about him. Don’t put him on your big league radar, but he’s finally done enough to be worth another look to see if he can build on this season and play his way (at least) to Triple-A.

There’s not much that stands out about the other names.

Johnson is a big strikeouts, big power kind of guy who’s found an organizational role as a Double-A run producer for the Yankees.

Rondon has been kind of an organizational reliever who finally got out of the lower levels this year and pitched pretty well in Double-A.

Hart was signed mid-season to provide some outfield depth in the lower levels. As far as I can tell, he never actually got in a game.

Headshots of Cedeno and Almonte





44 Responses to “Yankees make some early minor league moves”

  1. mick October 27th, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    where are the huggers?

  2. austinmac October 27th, 2012 at 2:40 pm

    None of these guys seem very huggable.

  3. mick October 27th, 2012 at 2:42 pm

    huggers in hiding….sounds like a jackson browne song.

    or was that lawyers in love.

  4. mick October 27th, 2012 at 2:54 pm

  5. austinmac October 27th, 2012 at 3:12 pm

    I’m just glad it isn’t lawyers in hiding.

  6. mick October 27th, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    could be….

  7. Against All Odds October 27th, 2012 at 3:25 pm

    Looks like everyone is in hiding mick lol

  8. The Return of Stoneburner October 27th, 2012 at 3:25 pm

    Geoff Baker of The Seattle Times notes that the Royals have been heavily scouting Mariners left-handed pitching prospect James Paxton in the Arizona Fall League. Dutton wonders if the two teams could work out a trade involving one of Kansas City’s bats given Seattle’s need for offense.

  9. RMS October 27th, 2012 at 4:08 pm

    There’s nothing wrong with having Gardner, Granderson, and Ichiro in the outfield.

    Nothing wrong with Gardner, Melky and Ichiro in the of either.

  10. Bo knows October 27th, 2012 at 4:36 pm


    It’s things like this where I have a problem with management and coaches. KLong should be all over stuff like that. Just like Rothschild should have picked up on Hughes tipping his pitches way sooner then he did. I don’t know all the particulars of what exchanges have taken place between coaches and players, but I do know the Yankees deserve better than that.

    Didn’t see your comments about Granderson prior to my post. It was sometime last August or so – Granderson was up in the 280′s in average and was a legitimate MVP contender. All of a sudden there was this extra movement and a loopy swing to get to the swing plane.

    Now I really hate all the excess garbage pre swing, so Swisher, Granderson, Teix, even Mesa drove me crazy.

    The thing is, from all I’ve read is that Long teaches basics, tries to eliminate as much unnecessary movement as possible. Granderson and to some extent Swisher were his best success stories. Both morphed into some bast version post the adjustments.

    The thing is that we’re talking multi million dollar swings grooved over years and at the highest level in baseball. It’s tricky to mess with it because the results can be catastrophic. Long started talking about different approaches in public a couple of months ago and got shut down with that “Bronx Bunter” thing. Now for a hitting coach to go public is putting his career on the line – Major No No. A lot of ego involved

  11. Bronx Jeers October 27th, 2012 at 4:39 pm

    Nothing wrong with Gardner, Melky and Ichiro in the of either.


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