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Yankees release seven minor leaguers

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Over at Baseball America, this week’s minor league transactions [2] include no new Yankees additions, but they do include a list of nine players who have been released by the organization.

[3] [4]Released: RHP Reinier Casanova, RHP Ryan Flannery, RHP Jhorge Liccien, SS Yadil Mujica, OF Kelvin Duran, OF Justin James, OF Damon Sublett

Most of these names — if not all of these names — should be unfamliar, but three stand out at least a little bit for me.

• Flannery was mentioned on this very blog just yesterday. Although he’d never been remotely overwhelming, he’d always shown impressive command in the lower levels of the minor league system. Through his five pro seasons, he has a 2.44 ERA and 1.10 WHIP, but his numbers slipped in Double-A last season. I suggested that he could get back on the radar if he re-discovered his command — after all, he had been terrific the previous year in Tampa — but Flannery is about to turn 27 years old and has clearly been passed by multiple relievers in the organization. Probably best for him to get a look in a different organization.

• Sublett was, once upon a time, considered a legitimate prospect. Probably the biggest prospect of this bunch. He was seventh-round pick in 2007, originally a second baseman but moved quickly to the outfield. Injuries cost him quite a bit of development time, and last season was his third attempt at Double-A. He hit just .214/.333/.314. With Abe Almonte re-signed, and with a standout crop of outfielders ready to surpass him next season, Sublett no longer had much of a place in this system.

• Mujica might have generated more initial buzz than anyone else on this list. He was signed out of Cuba in 2011, and because there wasn’t a ton of hard information about him, there seemed to at least the possibility that he might be a truly elite talent who’d fallen through the cracks. Instead, he quickly emerged as more of an organizational guy. He played a kind of utility role in Trenton in 2011, then bounced around, filling holes at three different levels last season. He was a .229/.291/.278 during his time with the Yankees.

Other familiar names from this week’s minor league transactions: Warner Madrigal and Nelson Figueroa (veterans who spent some time in the Yankees sytem) have signed with Arizona; John Maine (who pitched for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre last year) signed with Miami; Cory Wade has signed with the Cubs; Xavier Nady signed with the Royals.

Headshots of Sublett and Flannery