December 31, 2009

Newman’s notes on Yankees prospects

Yankees VP of baseball operations Mark Newman had a lot to say about the Yankees prospects yesterday. Beat writer Chad Jennings separated them into posts on the pitching and position players. Here they are in short:

Aroldis Chapman:

Newman said the reports were exactly what he expected: Huge fastball. Spotty command. Inconsistent secondary pitches. “But if you don’t like that, you need to be in another business,” Newman said.

“(He would start in) A or Double-A,” Newman said. “Wherever it is he pitches, he needs to be comfortable and he needs to work on the command and secondary pitches. And when he gets that, he’s going to take off.”

Wilkin De La Rosa & Jeremy Bleich:

De la Rosa and Bleich will be in a Double-A rotation that will most likely include recent 40-man addition Hector Noesi. Noesi made just nine High-A starts last year, but Newman said he will “probably” open in Trenton.

Christian Garcia:

Put Chris Garcia in the Double-A rotation as well. The high-ceiling, often-injured right-hander is currently throwing and should be ready to open the season back in Trenton.

Dellin Betances:

Newman said Betances should be ready to pitch close to the start of the season. He’s slated for High-A Tampa.

Alan Horne:

“He’s healthy. He’s got to come back and see if he can recapture it.”

Andrew Brackman:

“Brack’s got stuff that’s top-of-the-rotation stuff,” Newman said. Brackman’s overall numbers were bad last season, but through his last four appearances he pitched 10 scoreless innings, walking none and striking out nine.

Position players

On Brett Gardner’s bad jumps:

“We can simulate everything in the minor leagues except the three decks,” Newman said. That third deck makes the ball difficult to track, and it takes some getting used to.

On Juan Miranda being benched in the Dominican Winter League:

“I think they brought in one of their superstar guys,” Newman said. “But (Miranda) played well.” Through 13 games, Miranda has a .409 average with two home runs and 11 RBI.

Jamie Hoffmann:

“He’s a big guy that can run. He’s a toolsy guy. I hope we can keep him because I really like the guy.”

Colin Curtis:

The good news is, Curtis destroyed the Arizona Fall League with a .397 average, .472 on-base and five home runs. That’s an offensive league, but still, those are great numbers. “He led the league in OPS. Everything being relative, relative to the rest of the league, he was still really good.”

Catching situation:

Triple-A: Jesus Montero
Double-A: Austin Romine
High-A: undefined
Low-A: Kyle Higashioka
Extended ST: Gary Sanchez and J.R. Murphy

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