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Minor league notes: “His stuff is back”

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Misc on Jun 26, 2014 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Manny Banuelos

Yankees vice president of baseball operations Mark Newman disagreed this week with a recent report that left-handed pitching prospect Manny Banuelos has seen a fairly significant velocity dip in his first season back from Tommy John surgery, with his fastball stuck in the low 90s.

“That’s not true,” Newman said.

After seeing Banuelos pitch last Wednesday — incidentally, his last game before going on the disabled list with a blister problem — Keith Law reported that Banuelos never got his fastball higher than 92 mph (granted, with an above-average-to-plus changeup). I have no reason to doubt Law’s readings last week, but Newman said the Yankees have Banuelos “pitching at 92 and touching 94.” Newman said he couldn’t remember any 95s — a number Banuelos used to reach — but Newman doesn’t consider the velocity or arm strength to be an issue right now.

“He’s just about back (to what he was pre-surgery),” Newman said.

The latest blister setback is not considered a significant problem for Baneulos. His elbow has held up after surgery, though the Yankees have limited his workload to no more than three innings in each of his outings. Banuelos has a 1.10 WHIP and Double-A batters are hitting .198 against him.

“Velocity is good,” Newman said. “Breaking ball is improving as he gets more comfortable. … His stuff is back, now he needs to command it better.”

Several other minor league notes from Newman:

ON THE MOVE

Bryan Mitchell• Over the weekend, the Yankees made the unusual move of promoting RHP Bryan Mitchell to Triple-A despite having underwhelming Double-A numbers (1.50 WHIP, 5.44 ERA, had been particularly bad recently). “We wanted to give him a little change of scenery,” Newman said. “We wanted him to see a different level. I don’t know what it’s going to do for him.” The Yankees made a similar move with Mitchell last year, and he actually responded quite well. He was scheduled to make his second Triple-A start tonight, but that was before last night’s rain out. “I don’t know how long he’s going to stay there,” Newman said.

• Opposite move with RHP Mark Montgomery, who was demoted from Triple-A to Double-A earlier this month (only to be immediately placed on the disabled list because he’d been hit in the shin). “We got crowded there (in Triple-A),” Newman said. “We ran out of spots, so we’re going to try to make the most out of it. … It had to happen to somebody. We’re working on a few things, and I hope he’s back there shortly.” Newman said Montgomery is currently down in Tampa doing arm exercises. His Triple-A numbers really aren’t bad, but he does seem to have fallen behind some other bullpen prospects (that’s just my own observation and speculation, not something Newman said to me).

• LHP Nik Turley is ready to come off the disabled list and could start in tonight’s Triple-A doubleheader. Turley was shut down in spring training because of an arm issue and he made a rookie ball start over the weekend. Turley was solid in Double-A last year and had a 40-man spot until the spring injury led the Yankees to take him off the roster. The door is wide open for someone to perform well out of the Triple-A rotation. “If (Turley) throws strikes, he’s fine,” Newman said. “Gets a lot of swing and misses with his fastball, curveball and changeup.”

• Doesn’t sound like he’s particularly close to being on the big league radar, but RHP Andrew Bailey is throwing bullpens in Tampa. Newman said he’s throwing fastballs and changeups off a mound. The Yankees signed the former big league closer to a minor league deal during spring training. Coming back from shoulder surgery, he could be a big league option much later in the year.

• Bumped up from Charleston to Tampa, top pitching prospect RHP Luis Severino struck out eight in his High-A debut, and yesterday he went six hitless innings with six strikeouts and a walk (not at all unusual for young minor leaguers to be pulled during a no-hitter; happened a few times to Phil Hughes when he was coming up). RF Aaron Judge has also been bumped up to Tampa and so far has two triples and as many walks as strikeouts through seven games at High-A.

• One player not on the move is RHP Ty Hensley. The former first-round pick finally got in a rookie-ball game over the weekend, but Newman said the Yankees are in no rush to move up the ladder. “He hasn’t pitched,” Newman said. The Yankees just need to get Hensley innings after injuries have robbed him of all but 12 professional innings before this season.

INJURY REPORT

Ramon Flores• Scranton/Wilkes-Barre got SS Dean Anna and RHP Diego Moreno off the disabled list this week, but it will be a while longer before OF Ramon Flores returns from his ankle injury. “He’s a ways away,” Newman said. Flores is still not doing anything on that ankle. He’ll obviously have to get to the point that he can workout on the ankle before he begin real baseball activities.

• RHP Branden Pinder and OF Adonis Garcia are a little closer to rejoining Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Pinder hurt his groin and hasn’t pitched since May 25, but Newman said the big reliever will start throwing in “a couple of days” and could be back in the Triple-A bullpen in 10 days to two weeks. Garcia is out with a hamstring injury and has the same time table, 10 days to two weeks.

• Last year’s top draft pick, 3B Eric Jagielo, is hitting at the Yankees minor league complex and needs about 10 more days to finish off his rehab from an oblique injury. Should be back in the High-A lineup soon. The Yankees pushed him to Tampa in his first full season of pro ball, and Jagielo has responded by slugging .500 through 156 at-bats. Quite a few strikeouts, but his numbers were getting better in the weeks before the injury.

• Emerging as perhaps the top shortstop prospect in the system, Charleston SS Abiatal Avelino is working his way back from a quad injury. He’s on a time table pretty similar to Garcia and Jagielo, roughly 10 days to two weeks from rejoining the Charleston lineup. “Good player,” Newman said. “He can play the position.”

• One of the early season surprises, Charleston 1B Mike Ford, returned this weekend from a hamstring injury

• The latest problem for oft-injured 2B Angelo Gumbs is a left shoulder injury that’s kept him out of the Tampa lineup for a little more than a month. He’s been playing in rookie ball for a few days now and Newman said it’s just a matter of getting a few at-bats before he’s activated.

ODDS AND ENDS

Gary Sanchez, Antoan Richardson• I asked Newman if he would give any details or comment on the recent discipline issued to C Gary Sanchez — who was benched by Trenton manager Tony Franklin earlier this month — but Newman wouldn’t say anything about it. My own observation: Sanchez is a pretty obvious trade chip for the Yankees right now, and something had to be pretty bad for the Yankees to publicly discipline him at a time like this. Not a great time to bring up character issues for a guy like that. For what it’s worth, Sanchez has hit pretty well since getting back in the lineup.

• Newman said he expects the top picks from this year’s draft — beginning with LHP Jacob Lindgren — to make their debuts next week. As for where they’ll be assigned, some are still being determined, the others: “We haven’t even told them yet,” Newman said.

• After a breakout year in Double-A, RHP Shane Greene is off to a slow start in first taste of Triple-A. Newman points out that Greene looked great in spring training, then had that weird start to the season when he bounced between different levels and roles. “It made it a little bit difficult for him,” Newman said. “But I think he’s been better lately. He’s got really good stuff, as everybody knows. … The biggest deal with him is, he’s just got to get back into a rhythm.”

• Back to RHP Mark Montgomery for a bit: I’ve heard in the past that Montgomery leans on his slider too much and that might be stalling his advancement, but Newman dismissed the idea. “He’s got a really good slider, so he uses his slider a lot,” Newman said. “That’s not an issue.”

• 1B/C Pete O’Brien is one of the system’s biggest success stories so far this season. His power has been outrageous — two homers Monday gave him 25 home runs already — but he strikes out a lot, doesn’t walk much and his batting average and on-base percentage have really suffered since he got to Double-A. Is he going to make enough contact for that raw power to play in the upper levels? “It’s played so far,” Newman said. After clicking through the Yankees internal computer system — the Yankees have a ton of prospect information in a database — Newman said that the Yankees show O’Brien’s swing-and-miss rates actually improving. Newman said the miss rate against fastballs is already pretty good, and the miss rate against breaking balls is getting better.

Associated Press photos

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196 Responses to “Minor league notes: “His stuff is back””

  1. Jerkface June 26th, 2014 at 12:34 pm

    There should be an entire paragraph devoted to REFSYNDER. Can we start FREE REFSYNDER?

    Even if it is super early.

  2. Hankflorida June 26th, 2014 at 12:48 pm

    If any body think that we can win with a starting rotation of Whitley, Phelps and Nuno or CC, let me quote once more a line from the movie, “Donnie Brascoe,” and that is, “Forget about it!” Bring in another dominant pitcher to go with Tanaka and when it comes to the playoffs, we don’t have to forget about it! Who disagrees with me and thinks we can win with this pitching staff and our offense?

  3. hornblower June 26th, 2014 at 12:54 pm

    Thanks for the info. Chad. I guess it’s nice to write about players in their 20′s.

  4. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 12:58 pm

    So strange to be rooting for team USA to ‘not lose by too much’. Soccer is weird but exciting.

    GO USA! DON’T LOSE BY TOO MUCH!!!

  5. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 1:04 pm

    Wow that’s really bad news on Flores. He’s been out a month at least and still isn’t doing anything? He’s done for the year. And with that, that almost a full year of lost development. Maybe if he’s ok, they can send him to the AFL. But you have to worry more about the lingering effects of an ankle injury. We all remember Adams. Damn shame, I thought the could possible be in the mix next year. He was just starting to show some power too.

    –With Newman it’s always 10 days to two weeks and then another month goes by. Jagielo has been out more than a month now. Ford is back but I don’t he has a hit since he’s returned. Maybe like 0-15 or so. This guys a hitter too so maybe he’s not right yet.

    –Fowler left the game early yesterday. If Chad or anyone else

  6. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 1:10 pm

    Damn cut myself off there. Was saying Dustin Fowler left his game early last night. If Chad or anyone else knows anything about that that would be appreciated. He’s been one of the brightest lights in this minor league season.

    –The thing about Sanchez is, unless the Yanks say something, everyone is going to assume the worst. Perhaps in trade discussions the team will be more forthcoming. I understand they may regard this as a private matter so I guess it stays that way. In my many years of following sports, college, pro, basketball, football, whatever, when there’s an off-the-field problem for an athlete, more times than not, it doesn’t go away. It comes back later in some form. So until we find out what really happened, it’s hard not to believe it’s pretty bad.

  7. PhiltheThrill June 26th, 2014 at 1:11 pm

    Should have talked about Roller and Pirela, too.

  8. J. Alfred Prufrock June 26th, 2014 at 1:16 pm

    Chad,

    Thanks for the report. That sounds right, Manny’s curveball was slow to come around in the two starts I attended. Took him a couple of innings to get a feel for it. I hope they don’t look to him as BP depth this year. Let him get his mojo back and look to 2015.

    Jairo Heredia? Any idea if they think he could help in the BP? Got 40 K in 25 IP and in the starts I saw, his offspeed was great. Fastball was up last start, but he still managed to baffle with the curve/change combo and wasn’t in real trouble, althought was a little lucky giving up long flyouts and LD outs. Didn’t have good SWB numbers, not sure what happened in those appearances. Still coming back from the shoulder I guess. Is he in play at all this year?

  9. blake June 26th, 2014 at 1:18 pm

    Newman finished the Banuelos interview then immediately wrapped him in bubbles and decreased his pitch count to 15 just to be sure they are rushing him

  10. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 1:19 pm

    Don’t know who’s more reliable on Manny’s stuff. Law or Newman. But it wouldn’t surprise me if his stuff is a bit diminished following TJS. Maybe he needs some more time to build up arm strength. But the experts say now the success rate on TJS is 75-80% in terms of coming all the way back. So that mean obviously 1 in 4 or 1 in 5 will not be the same pitcher they were before the surgery.

  11. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 1:22 pm

    Wonder what Nik Turley is going to have when he gets to AAA. Not a bad year for a young pitcher to get hot. He could find himself in a ML starting rotation almost overnight.

  12. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 1:26 pm

    Shame Spencer June 26th, 2014 at 12:25 pm
    Chip June 26th, 2014 at 12:23 pm
    I don’t have a problem with what the Yankees did this past winter. I have a problem with what got them to that point in the first place.

    ————–

    This might be a situation where these things aren’t 100% mutually exclusive. The moves this off season are directly tied to the inaction in prior years, right?
    ——————————

    Oh they’re completely related. But the fact is that the key moves they made this winter were the right ones to start getting things turned around at the major league level.

    Ellsbury, McCann, Tanaka, Beltran – these are top level players who are going to be part of the solution and not the problem. The guys who are identified as being the roster sucks (Roberts, Johnson, Soriano, Ichiro) will all be gone after this year and hopefully replaced by better players like Asdrubal Cabrera, Rob Refsnyder….etc.

    If they continue to fail to develop (or trust) their young players and decide to patch holes with short term veterans at the ends of their careers then it’s a problem. That’s why I said the franchise is at a crossroads. They started taking a long term view of how to fill their holes last winter, now they have to continue that this winter.

  13. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 1:28 pm

    LHP Nik Turley is ready to come off the disabled list and could start in tonight’s Triple-A doubleheader.
    ———————

    Missed that they had re-signed him. If he can get back to pre-injury form that would be a great thing.

  14. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 1:30 pm

    Whenever I read about Gary Sanchez I think Jose Tabata (whom I would be happy to see brought back to play RF btw). Tabata was highly touted, seemed to stall a little at AA and responded poorly and was benched for disciplinary reasons before being traded.

  15. PhiltheThrill June 26th, 2014 at 1:34 pm

    Sanchez has performed at a much higher level at higher levels and younger ages than Tabata did, and Tabata was 2 years older than everyone thought he was when he was a Yankee.

  16. Missing Cano June 26th, 2014 at 1:36 pm

    from espn acknowledging some worth in mason Williams

    2. Mason Williams, OF, New York Yankees
    Scouting grades: 55 Hit, 45 Power, 60 Speed
    Analysis: Like Hawkins, Williams struggled considerably in 2013, but unlike Hawkins, those struggles have carried over into 2014. This is still a hitter with quality bat speed who is capable of stealing boatloads of bases (assuming he can get on first base), and while he won’t ever be a big home run hitter, he can put the ball into the gaps. If someone in your league has grown frustrated with the lack of success, you can do a lot worse than an outfielder who can help you in several fantasy categories in the next couple of years.

  17. Missing Cano June 26th, 2014 at 1:37 pm

    RF Aaron Judge has also been bumped up to Tampa and so far has two triples and as many walks as strikeouts through seven games at High-A.

    amazing 6’7″ and his walks to K ratio the plate discipline

    like hughes need to see severino remain healthy and get through that gaunlet

  18. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 1:39 pm

    Tabata has never been able to win a full OF gig with Pitt. He has no power. His problems have followed him. You want him as the starting RF?

  19. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 1:40 pm

    Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 1:39 pm
    Tabata has never been able to win a full OF gig with Pitt. He has no power. His problems have followed him. You want him as the starting RF?
    ——————-

    Noooooo – but if the Yankees are going to platoon in RF I would rather see him than Soriano against LHP.

    Frankly I would rather see a platoon of Almonte and Tabata than Ichiro and Soriano.

  20. Missing Cano June 26th, 2014 at 1:41 pm

    Tabata has never been able to win a full OF gig with Pitt. He has no power.

    tabata’s wrist injury sapped him of any growing power the writing was on the wall at that time

    “Yankees outfielder Jose Tabata will miss the remainder of the season after surgery to remove the hamate bone in his right wrist.

    The injury has bothered the 19-year-old outfielder since playing in the Venezuelan Winter League, and he’s seen five different hand specialists over the past year to get a proper diagnosis.”

    http://www.baseballamerica.com.....64685.html

  21. Missing Cano June 26th, 2014 at 1:42 pm

    There should be an entire paragraph devoted to REFSYNDER. Can we start FREE REFSYNDER?

    Even if it is super early.

    Refsnyder is a competitor we all could see it when he won the CWS mvp and comes from a good college program

  22. blake June 26th, 2014 at 1:48 pm

    I’m saving all my prospect hugs for Aaron Judge

  23. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 1:52 pm

    The thing about Williams and Sanchez is I think both got promoted too early last year. Neither proved that they had mastered the FSL. Now I believe Sanchez may be poised for a break out now, and if so, despite the disciplinary issue, his status could rise. He’s still only 21 in AA which is impressive.

    Williams, who’s almost 23, I don’t know about. But I was thinking about him last night. Assuming nothing is wrong with Fowler, both he and Cave need to move up next year. Cave in AA and Fowler in Tampa. They are both CFs who need to develop. Both may be better prospects than Williams. I think Cave now is. So I think Williams gets promoted to Scranton next year. Let’s face it, his defense plays. And I don’t think he’ll hit any worse in Scranton than he’s hitting in Trenton. Hell, he’ll probably hit better.

    That’s potentially three CFs in the pipeline of varying degrees of talent. Interesting.

  24. Shame Spencer June 26th, 2014 at 1:54 pm

    Chip – I disagree with this line: But the fact is that the key moves they made this winter were the right ones to start getting things turned around at the major league level.

    This really isn’t fact.

    The Beltran and Ellsbury deals in particular are problematic for me in terms or resources vs. production.

    I think Tanaka was the only slam dunk move they made this winter that you can claim, across the board, was a must-sign player and totally worth the contract.

  25. tomingeorgia June 26th, 2014 at 1:54 pm

    Soccer: One win, one tie and one loss equals moving on up? Strange game, indeed.

  26. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 1:54 pm

    USA moves on without a shot on goal. … Weird sport.

  27. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 1:59 pm

    Shame Spencer June 26th, 2014 at 1:54 pm
    Chip – I disagree with this line: But the fact is that the key moves they made this winter were the right ones to start getting things turned around at the major league level.

    This really isn’t fact.

    The Beltran and Ellsbury deals in particular are problematic for me in terms or resources vs. production.

    I think Tanaka was the only slam dunk move they made this winter that you can claim, across the board, was a must-sign player and totally worth the contract.
    ————————–

    Depends on what the Yankee resources are – if the Yankees cry poor because of money tied up for Ellsbury and Beltran that’s one thing. If they don’t. If they spend and thus prove that money isn’t why Cano’s gone (years are) then that’s another thing entirely. To me anyway – but everyone’s entitled to their own opinions.

  28. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 2:00 pm

    I think it’s too early to truly evaluate Beltran and Ellsbury. I actually think Beltran will work out strictly as a DH. Just not this year. The man is hurt. He needs surgery.

    Ellsbury’s deal was way too long. Probably two years too long. They’ll pay for that when the time comes. But he should be a very good player for around three years or so. Better than he’s playing right now. He should be hitting leadoff. And all the new guys are pressing way too much.

    Speaking of pressing, I think McCann will be much better next year.

  29. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 2:00 pm

    http://riveraveblues.com/2014/.....se-105345/

    Internal options.

  30. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 2:01 pm

    I think Ellsbury is going to be a great player for this team. Not a good player, not a solid contributor but a great player.

  31. Chad Jennings June 26th, 2014 at 2:01 pm

    PhiltheThrill June 26th, 2014 at 1:11 pm e

    Should have talked about Roller and Pirela, too.

    I’ve fully given up on satisfying everyone with these minor league posts, but there was a decent amount of Triple-A infield talk that didn’t really fit here and was written into a post that’s running later this afternoon. This thing was already 1,500 words, really didn’t want to weigh it down with another 700 on the Scranton infielders. Newman talking about Refsnyder’s defense and Pirela’s season are coming up, just give it some time.

  32. mick June 26th, 2014 at 2:03 pm

    Does anyone have a cogent reason why Ellsbury isn’t batting leadoff?

  33. Shame Spencer June 26th, 2014 at 2:07 pm

    Depends on what the Yankee resources are – if the Yankees cry poor because of money tied up for Ellsbury and Beltran that’s one thing. If they don’t. If they spend and thus prove that money isn’t why Cano’s gone (years are) then that’s another thing entirely. To me anyway – but everyone’s entitled to their own opinions.

    —————-

    I dunno that there’s a ton of evidence to work off of right now that says they’ll be big spenders again this off season. If they are, sure, I agree – I don’t care what their payroll is so spend spend spend.

    But they haven’t filled gaps lately with viable players that just cost money for one year (Drew, Morales).

  34. Jerkface June 26th, 2014 at 2:07 pm

    I’ve fully given up on satisfying everyone with these minor league posts, but there was a decent amount of Triple-A infield talk that didn’t really fit here and was written into a post that’s running later this afternoon. This thing was already 1,500 words, really didn’t want to weigh it down with another 700 on the Scranton infielders. Newman talking about Refsnyder’s defense and Pirela’s season are coming up, just give it some time.

    Just want to reiterate that I continue to love all your minor league talk on the blog. Really one of the hallmarks of the LOHUD blog since you took it over.

    I am especially intrigued by the apparently dense database of minor league related stats the Yankees have and I wonder how they compile them. I wish MLB would pay some money and get pitchfx et al into the minor leagues.

  35. mick June 26th, 2014 at 2:09 pm

    Where does Morales fit in?

  36. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 2:15 pm

    no other options at #3.

    believe me, i can’t wait to see ells/gardner at the top of this order, but it’s just not gonna happen this year…

  37. Chad Jennings June 26th, 2014 at 2:18 pm

    Jerkface June 26th, 2014 at 2:07 pm e

    I am especially intrigued by the apparently dense database of minor league related stats the Yankees have and I wonder how they compile them. I wish MLB would pay some money and get pitchfx et al into the minor leagues.

    I don’t think the Yankees database is particularly unusual. It seems most teams have some sort of personal system for storing all sorts of stats and scouting reports on every player. I know the Astros’ beat writer for the Chronicle did a big story this spring about Houston’s computer database system.

    As for the Yankees’ system, I know it includes player scouting reports going back to high school. It breaks down stats by pitch type and situation. They’ve never let me look at it directly — it’s all proprietary and protected, and it probably includes plenty of stuff they’d never want the press to see, including the Sanchez discipline details — but I’ve been in Newman’s office while he’s looked stuff up and it’s pretty amazing. He can compare past seasons, compare players, look into specific details with just a few clicks. When I talk to him for these minor league posts, I can hear over the phone that he’s clicking through the system looking up specifics. The amount of information being gathered goes well beyond PitchFX.

  38. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 2:20 pm

    “I don’t think the Yankees will cut ties with Roberts. He’s hit well enough over the last week or so and they seem to appreciate his long at-bats and veteran presence*. I don’t believe Soriano is safe though, and Solarte could always be optioned to Triple-A to clear another roster spot. It’s not like he’s done much with the bat over the last month anyway.”

    ——-

    From Axisa’s good RAB article on internal options.

    Isn’t this exactly what I’ve been saying for over a month now? Roberts isn’t going anywhere but Soriano is one most likely to get the ax, probably in July. Axisa goes on to say that Pirela is probably the best choice to replace Soriano, something I brought over the last week. I’ve pretty much resigned myself to the fact that Almonte won’t get a shot but Axisa also discussed a possible platoon with Almonte and Ichiro (reverse split) something I think I proposed two months ago.

    So good work there Axisa. He also said something incredibly dumb which I’ll bring up in my next post.

  39. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 2:29 pm

    “PhiltheThrill June 26th, 2014 at 1:11 pm
    Should have talked about Roller and Pirela, too”
    =============================
    plenty of web space available to start your own better blog…

  40. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 2:32 pm

    “Refsnyder might not be the team’s best hope for a long-term Robinson Cano replacement (Gosuke Katoh and Angelo Gumbs are among those in the system with higher ceilings), but he is the closest to the show and will get the first crack at the job.”

    —-

    Also from the same Axisa article.

    I just can’t get over how confused some people are over prospects. And the ugly word “ceiling” is almost always behind that confusion.

    Let’s start by saying, as prospects, there is no comparison between Refsynder and Gumbs or Katoh. They can’t shine Refs’ shoes. Saying that they have higher ceilings than Refs is asinine. What does that even mean? I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a dozen times, it’s virtually meaningless to discuss ceilings as to minor leaguers and completely insane to mention ceilings with respect to players in the lower levels. Wasn’t Katoh in high school a year ago? He’s hitting about .200 in low A now. Gumbs has been an awful prospect, either injured or not performing in his five years in the Yankee system. All Refs has done as a minor leaguer is hit every year, and also hit in a top college program. He’s on the precipice now of reaching the major leagues and there’s even a real good chance he could start at 2b for Yanks next year.

    Comparing Refsynder at all to Gumbs and Katoh, and especially comparing him unfavorably, shows a complete lack of understanding of what player development is all about.

  41. astrocityfan June 26th, 2014 at 2:39 pm

    Chad,
    I want to throw my thanks out to you for the minor league stuff. Its one of the reason i read the blog. Always informative and interesting.

  42. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 2:40 pm

    so anybody have any insight into how refsnyder’s D is coming along? heard lots about his hitting…

  43. SweetSpot June 26th, 2014 at 2:41 pm

    I suppose I can understand the interest fans have in minor league talent but I don’t think anything really matters until a ballplayer proves his worth in the big leagues. Some get excited about highly touted prospects, only to have them completely disappear from sight. It’s a waste of time to me, but to each their own. For me, just the broad strokes is all I’m interested in.

  44. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 2:44 pm

    Axisa also alluded to something in his article that I mentioned earlier this week, if you are going to platoon Solarte at 3b with Johnson, it makes more sense to send Solarte down and bring up Sizemore. I think awhile back Axisa mentioned a possible platoon of Sizemore and Johnson but that was in the context of Solarte playing 2b. But since everyone agrees now Roberts is here to stay, Sizemore is a better platoon option at 3b than Solarte. I bet he fields 3b better than Solarte as well.

  45. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 2:50 pm

    While I appreciate the work that Chad and Mike do in compiling the information about the minor leaguers and while I too enjoy reading about them, I think it’s become painfully obvious that the current Yankee decision makers (Girardi and Cashman) have no interest in actually allowing any of these players to help the Yankees until all other options have been exhausted.

  46. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 2:51 pm

    Another thing. PECOTA projections for minor leaguers, fringe prospects, major leaguers returning from injuries is complete nonsense.

  47. austinmac June 26th, 2014 at 2:51 pm

    It is the height of silliness to say there is no such thing as high ceiling players. Was Mantle a high ceiling player? Trout? Yes, they ultimatley have to produce, but some have bat speed, footspeed, power that others do not have. They have high ceilings. That does not mean they will achieve them, but they have the physical capability.

    Would you have rather had Judge or Dugas or “your boy” Solarte? One might be a star and the others might, if all goes well, be back ups.

  48. Giuseppe Franco June 26th, 2014 at 3:00 pm

    When you’ve got an old and unexciting big club playing .500 ball it’s not that hard to understand why people tend to focus more on young and exciting alternatives who might be able to help at some point.

    Young players simply bring more energy and excitement to the game.

    Who on the big club has generated the most excitement this season?

    Tanaka and Betances

  49. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 3:03 pm

    Giuseppe Franco June 26th, 2014 at 3:00 pm
    When you’ve got an old and unexciting big club playing .500 ball it’s not that hard to understand why people tend to focus more on young and exciting alternatives who might be able to help at some point.

    Young players simply bring more energy and excitement to the game.

    Who on the big club has generated the most excitement this season?

    Tanaka and Betances
    ————————-

    I’m not disagreeing with why it is interesting. I’m just saying that those of us (myself included) who read these reports and think “Yeah, these guys could help, let’s get them up here” are fooling ourselves.

    Girardi has made it clear – through his actions – that he is going to ride with his veterans unless he has absolutely no choice.

  50. Giuseppe Franco June 26th, 2014 at 3:03 pm

    Chip kinda beat me to it but I was going to say that sadly this organization feels the same way about young players as SweetSpot.

  51. 86w183 June 26th, 2014 at 3:03 pm

    Referring to a player as having a “high ceiling” or “low ceiling” is generally just a reference to the tools he brings to the game. The better the raw talent, the higher the “ceiling”.

    I would say Aaron Judge has a much higher ceiling than Zoilo Amonte, but he’s not a better player right now and may never be.

  52. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 3:03 pm

    “It is the height of silliness to say there is no such thing as high ceiling players. Was Mantle a high ceiling player? Trout? ”

    ——

    If you have been reading my posts closely on this topic, you would have picked up on the fact that there are exceptions that prove the rule. I mentioned four previously, Mantle, Trout, Griffey and Arod. These guys are so exceptional that stardom screams out. But those instances are as rare as those players. Ben Grieve, Brandon Wood. Just off the top of my head. No. 1 ranked prospects. Where are they now?

    Glad you brought up Judge. There’s a good lesson here. I’ve said this a few times before, when discussing a prospect, there are only two relevant questions: What are the prospects chances of making to the majors in some capacity and what are the chances of that prospect becoming a starter?

    So what do think those chances are for Judge? Right now, Solarte has made the major leagues. He’s even been a starter for a period of time. He may not stay there, but he’s done something probably 98% of the current minor leaguers will never do.

    So what do you think Judge’s chances are of doing something Solarte has already done?

  53. Giuseppe Franco June 26th, 2014 at 3:04 pm

    Chip,

    My post was a response to SS, not you.

  54. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 3:05 pm

    86w183 June 26th, 2014 at 3:03 pm
    Referring to a player as having a “high ceiling” or “low ceiling” is generally just a reference to the tools he brings to the game. The better the raw talent, the higher the “ceiling”.

    I would say Aaron Judge has a much higher ceiling than Zoilo Amonte, but he’s not a better player right now and may never be.
    ——————–

    Another great example is Gary Sanchez vs. John Ryan Murphy. If Sanchez reaches his potential Murphy won’t come close to him as a player, but then again there’s a chance that Sanchez never becomes as good as Murphy is right now.

  55. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 3:05 pm

    Giuseppe Franco June 26th, 2014 at 3:04 pm
    Chip,

    My post was a response to SS, not you.
    ——————-

    Gotcha

  56. 86w183 June 26th, 2014 at 3:08 pm

    Chip —

    We’re not fooling ourselves by wanting to see more young players get a chance. We might be fooling ourselves if we EXPECT to see it happen.

    I do believe Yankees fans would accept a season in which a lot of young players get a chance at the MLB level while they get their financial house in order. I just don’t to expect to see them ever go that route.

    This team IS incredibly boring to watch. If Pirela, Roller and Almonte replaced Soriano, Ichiro and Roberts/Johnson I think it would energize the fan base…. however they are much more likely to try and acquire a veteran 3B or RF.

  57. SweetSpot June 26th, 2014 at 3:08 pm

    “Chip kinda beat me to it but I was going to say that sadly this organization feels the same way about young players as SweetSpot.”

    That’s patently not true. I would guess no one wants the Yankees to win more than Cashman and Girardi. Aside from roster space there are a myriad of factors that effect when someone is brought up. They know the players in the system far better than anyone else does and as Chad pointed out some of the information is proprietary and not for public’s dissemination. To suggest that Cashman and Girardi don’t like “young players” is totally preposterous.

  58. mick June 26th, 2014 at 3:14 pm

    Condescension is the hallmark of those who know better.

  59. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 3:16 pm

    “Another great example is Gary Sanchez vs. John Ryan Murphy. If Sanchez reaches his potential Murphy won’t come close to him as a player, but then again there’s a chance that Sanchez never becomes as good as Murphy is right now.”

    —-

    And this is a prime example how the concept of ceiling leads to bad decision-making. Under no circumstance should Sanchez ever be valued higher than Murphy as a prospect right now. Why? Because, at least according to the reports I’ve read, Sanchez doesn’t presently have the skills to be a major league catcher. He may yet develop them. But he doesn’t have them now and Murphy does.

    As far has hitting potential goes, I’m sure some will say if, and only if, Sanchez makes it to the major leagues, he has higher ceiling as a hitter than Murphy. I say that’s rubbish. No one can predict with any certainty how good of an offensive player Murphy or Sanchez will be until they actually spend some significant time in the major leagues.

    Prospects like Mattingly and Boggs were never thought to be the hitters they eventually became. Boggs and Mattingly were not regarded has having any higher ceilings than Murphy does right now. Once a player proves he’s good enough to start in the major leagues, only then does it become relevant to discuss just how far he can go. Before then, it’s a waste of time.

  60. Giuseppe Franco June 26th, 2014 at 3:17 pm

    SweetSpot June 26th, 2014 at 3:08 pm

    That’s patently not true. I would guess no one wants the Yankees to win more than Cashman and Girardi. Aside from roster space there are a myriad of factors that effect when someone is brought up. They know the players in the system far better than anyone else does and as Chad pointed out some of the information is proprietary and not for public’s dissemination. To suggest that Cashman and Girardi don’t like “young players” is totally preposterous.

    ——

    It’s preposterous that you would come to that conclusion if you’ve been watching this team regularly the past few years.

    They favor vets over youngsters in almost every situation. And when Girardi does have a youngster on his bench he tends to sit there and rot unless all other options are exhausted.

    I don’t see how anyone who has watched this team in recent years can come to a different conclusion.

  61. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 3:18 pm

    any rebuild or waving of the white flag will kill attendance and ratings. dont even try to sell me on how exciting ‘the kids’ will be. the hardcore fans are going nowhere, but they never do. the casual fan will leave in droves and be hard to coax back.

    im not against a rebuild, in fact, i’d be very happy to see them sellers at the TD, picking up young talent for the future. but lets not kid ourselves about what it will do to attendance/ratings/revenue.

    and a rebuild started now could easily put them behind the mets for a few seasons, as they have more young talent than we do right now.

  62. SweetSpot June 26th, 2014 at 3:18 pm

    Once a player proves he’s good enough to start in the major leagues, only then does it become relevant to discuss just how far he can go. Before then, it’s a waste of time.

    I think that pretty much says it all.

  63. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 3:19 pm

    I’ve often said that fans would do well to stop listening to what Cashman and Girardi say and pay more attention to what they do.

    For example, Cashman, Newman et al kept telling fans how much they believed in Jesus Montero yet when Russ Martin was sitting with a bad back Montero stayed in AAA and even when Montero was called up Romine was called up too and it was Romine who got the bulk of the catching work while Montero got some at bats as a DH. That told you all you needed to know about the lack of faith the organization had in Montero.

    So when Girardi says that he’s going to stick with his guys because he expects them to get back to their career averages I ignore it because what else is he supposed to say. What terrifies me as a fan is that, in this case, it’s not just lip service. You watch him running Ichiro, Soriano and Roberts out there game after game after game and you know he really believes that they’re going to bounce back. Maybe less so with Soriano than the others.

  64. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 3:21 pm

    the only time in my lifetime that the yankees have been about young players was when stick was running the show prior to the dynasty. all of george’s time runninng the club, young players were held in lower esteem than they are right now. in fact they were considered as nothing but chips to get aging ‘name’ veterans.

  65. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 3:22 pm

    and montero totally failed as a catcher so maybe they knew what they were doing.

  66. 86w183 June 26th, 2014 at 3:22 pm

    If it’s a waste of time then why in hell are you participating in the discussion? Just hoping to write something you can pat yourself on the back about in a few months?

    Y Guy — You have no idea ho fans would react to an influx of young players and bailing on older guys o the back end of their careers. You think this assemblage o non-productive talent is producing big ratings??

  67. SweetSpot June 26th, 2014 at 3:27 pm

    Giuseppe Franco June 26th, 2014 at 3:17 pm
    It’s preposterous that you would come to that conclusion if you’ve been watching this team regularly the past few years. They favor vets over youngsters in almost every situation. And when Girardi does have a youngster on his bench he tends to sit there and rot unless all other options are exhausted. I don’t see how anyone who has watched this team in recent years can come to a different conclusion.
    _____________

    That’s just absolutely not the case. If a ballplayer proves he can perform on the big league level, he will play. If he proves to be really good, he will play every day. Betances is a perfect example. I remember the complaining here this season about Betances not pitching in more important situations, etc. When in reality, Girardi, I’m sure after consulting with Cashman, brought him along slowly in a manner designed to allow him to build up his confidence, prove his control issues were behind him and to succeed not fail. They were absolutely right, look at the results.

    This notion that prospects should be rushed to the big leagues, anointing them as the next coming (possibly necessitating dropping someone from the forty-man roster,) is not the smart way to do things. The pros know this. You don’t set young players up to fail and you don’t discard proven vets because they are slumping.

  68. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 3:28 pm

    i disagree that there are better options than ichiro, roberts and soriano at the moment. long-term yes, but right now today there are not. its a very sad state of affairs, but girardi is just dealing with bad options all around, and they are too close to first place to be letting youngsters learn on the job.

    as i say, i’d be ok with going into a rebuild, either a mini rebuild or a total break-down, but the organization is not, and looking at it from a buisness standpoint, i dont blame them.

  69. Giuseppe Franco June 26th, 2014 at 3:29 pm

    86w183 June 26th, 2014 at 3:22 pm

    If it’s a waste of time then why in hell are you participating in the discussion?

    ——

    His schtick is always the same. Everything in Yankeeland is hunky dory and Cashman and Co. are all doing boffo jobs.

    That’s why Hal is paying $210M+ for a .500 team.

  70. bbb51 June 26th, 2014 at 3:29 pm

    mick June 26th, 2014 at 2:03 pm
    Does anyone have a cogent reason why Ellsbury isn’t batting leadoff?

    Jeter.

  71. bigdan22 June 26th, 2014 at 3:31 pm

    When trying to understand prospects and their value you have to start by trying to understand just how hard it is for a minor leaguer to have a major league career.

    Let’s talk about Judge but start with just a random Single A player. What do you the chances are of a random singe A player having a career in the major leagues? 100 to 1? 50 to 1? 20 to 1? If I had to guess, I’d say it’s about 40 to 50 to 1.

    Now Judge isn’t some random Single A player. He’s a really good prospect. He’s got some good tools although not all scouts agree that they’ll translate to a major league career (the scouting report I posted a couple days ago wasn’t so flattering). Judge also did real well in low A this season. But he’s also 22 years old. Not 19 and that means something.

    I like Judge as a prospect. I put his odds of having a career in the major leagues at 20% and his chances of becoming a starter at 10%. Those are great odds. Many many times better than a random level A player.

    As far as how many homers he’ll hit a year once he gets to the majors, that’s just a dumb question.

  72. SweetSpot June 26th, 2014 at 3:32 pm

    Every baseball fan wants very good, young, cost controlled players on the team. I want that as much as anyone. But not just because they are young. Because they are good and ready and have proven themselves.

  73. 86w183 June 26th, 2014 at 3:32 pm

    Off to do some work…

    Kudos to Phil Jackson for moving Felton and Chandler…. if he can find a taker forAamare Stoudamire he’s already NBA Executive of the Year for 2014-15!

    Have a day

  74. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 3:33 pm

    86, if i have no idea how fans would react to a rebuild, then neither do you.

    how has new york dealt with the rebuilding Mets?

    by abandoning them. 2008 attendance was 4M, last year was just over 2.

  75. SweetSpot June 26th, 2014 at 3:36 pm

    86w183 June 26th, 2014 at 3:22 pm
    If it’s a waste of time then why in hell are you participating in the discussion? Just hoping to write something you can pat yourself on the back about in a few months?
    —————
    First of all, I don’t pat myself on the back and I defy you to post when I have ever done that. I am just a fan with an opinion and if something I believe in happens to turn out the way I thought it would it’s just luck.

    Second of all, I participate in the discussion because I’m a Yankee fan and to counter what I consider to be fallacious comments, such as “Cashman and Girardi don’t like young players.” And I don’t need your approval.

  76. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 3:41 pm

    how did yankees fans react to the last rebuild?

    …attendance dipped to 1.6M

  77. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 3:44 pm

    1995 yankees attendance was 1.6M and 16th in mlb.

  78. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 3:47 pm

    Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 3:22 pm
    and montero totally failed as a catcher so maybe they knew what they were doing.
    ———————-

    Not the point though – the point is that through it all the Yankees kept saying how much they believed in Montero as a catcher as a hitter as the good lord almighty. But if you watched how they acted it was a totally different story, one more honest in what they thought of him.

  79. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 3:49 pm

    but your original point was about how they never give the kids a chance.

    you example showed exactly why that was the right course of action.

  80. austinmac June 26th, 2014 at 3:49 pm

    Murphy was a second round draft pick so he has tools. The distinction made by 86 is correct. Ceilings deal with tools or raw ability. We can hope high ceiling players become stars. Those without the tools will not. Many high ceiling guys never make it out of A ball for a million reasons.

    Clearly, when drafting a team should look first for a guy who could be an all star than one who can probably become a bench player.

  81. nicholas June 26th, 2014 at 3:49 pm

    Cubs scouts want Sanchez and Ref….that’s just to open up talks for Samardjzia and O’Brien is being scouted heavily (obviously)

  82. Chip June 26th, 2014 at 3:50 pm

    Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 3:33 pm
    86, if i have no idea how fans would react to a rebuild, then neither do you.

    how has new york dealt with the rebuilding Mets?
    ————————-

    And this is the fear – the Yankees don’t want to be the Mets.

  83. austinmac June 26th, 2014 at 3:57 pm

    Listening to MLB radio got me thinking about acquiring pitching. I know Wanzies seems optimistic, but I must disagree.

    Price is a very valuable commodity teams with great systems want, such as the Cards. The Rays don’t want to deal him to us except for a far better deal. We can’t make a better deal than others will do for one of the best pitchers in baseball.

    The Cubs want young, nearly ready pitching for Samardzija. We are fresh out. Probably, the same for Hamels. Plus, Bowden says he doesn’t think Hamels is a NY type of player.

    Lee has an iffy shoulder and a huge contract.

    I don’t see any good pitcher we can get to be a no. 2. I strongly believe any pitcher we acquire will be a no. 4-5 type, which is, of course, better than what we have. But, not a big difference maker.

    Too many teams with money and better prospects to compete with for too few good pitchers.

  84. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 3:57 pm

    i think you always have to ignore or at least take it with a grain of salt when any organization says ‘we believe in _____”

    it is always in the organization’s best interest to say this even when it is not true.

  85. Ys Guy June 26th, 2014 at 3:59 pm

    i lived in philly and watched hamels close up.

    he’s way tougher than people think.

    he’s a fan favorite in philly, what does that tell you about tough?

    if you can get him, get him.

    but i don’t think we can.

  86. austinmac June 26th, 2014 at 4:00 pm

    Chip,

    When comparing rosters and Pythagorean numbers as well as prospects, particularly pitching, the Mets seem build better going forward. At some point, we have to develop players who are above average to compete with them or anyone else.

  87. austinmac June 26th, 2014 at 4:02 pm

    Hamels would be great, but the Phil’s aren’t moving him because that tells the fans the re-building is a lengthy process. Again, if I am wrong on that, every team near the top of the races would be all over him as well.

  88. austinmac June 26th, 2014 at 4:05 pm

    Ys,

    My brain mis-fired. I was talking about Jason Hammel perhaps not being right for NY. Cole Hamels would be a miracle.

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