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Posts Tagged ‘Hector Noesi’

Garcia tosses a pitch against the Yankees

Well, maybe not. It was widely reported last night that the Yankees inked Freddie Garcia to a minor league deal with an invitation to Spring Training, pending a physical. Assuming Garcia passes and earns a spot on the team, the contract is rumored to be worth as much as $5.1M, with incentives. He had a similar opportunity with the Mets in 2009 and didn’t cash in,  but it turns out he was injured then.

Garcia isn’t as terrible a pickup as some have complained, particularly on a minor league deal. Like every starting pitcher still currently available, his career has basically been that of a middle-of-the-rotation guy coming off injuries. He did make 28 starts for the White Sox last year, but that was more than he made in the previous 3 seasons combined. He wasn’t terrible; he wasn’t great. He did allow a .293 average on balls in play and only struck out 15.5% of the batters he faced, which means he wasn’t fooling too many hitters. But he also figured out ways to limit the damage, going at least 6 innings in 22 of his starts.

The real point of this signing is trying to build up some depth for the back-end of the rotation. Expect Garcia to compete with Ivan Nova, Bartolo Colon, Sergio Mitre and possibly rookie Hector Noesi for one of the two remaining spots in the starting rotation. (Unless Mitre turns in a lights-out performance this spring, expect him to wind up in the bullpen – but more on that later.) In that context, it’s another low-risk, high-reward move that might actually help the Yanks in 2011.

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The One that Got Away

For those of you haven’t heard, Cliff Lee surprised just about everyone by deciding to sign with the Phillies. The move is an unqualified disaster for the Yankees and Brian Cashman, who had bet the farm (and the team’s immediate future) on signing the ace lefty. Combined with Boston’s wheeling and dealing, and Andy Pettitte’s possible (and likely) retirement, the Yanks may not be in serious contention for a playoff spot: Boston hasn’t only improved themselves, but so have the Tigers, Twins and White Sox. The Yankees look like they’re headed into the season with a two man rotation. (CC Sabathia and Phil Hughes),  a depleted bench and shaky bullpen. Ouch.

So, what to do now?

1. Trade for for a starter: use some of the Yankees minor-league depth to acquire a proven, front-end starter. Unfortunately, two best rumored to be available, Zack Greinke and Carlos Zambrano, are both head cases. Greinke is a former Cy Young winner. He’s rumored to want out of Kansas City. He’s young. He’s also had problems handling stress – and suddenly being cast as the “savior” of the 2011 season for the New York Yankees has a good chance of stopping his 2011 season before it starts. Not too mention that KC would want half of the Yankees farm sytem in return. Zambrano has top of the rotation stuff and the “Big Z” certainly has delivered both wins and quality starts in the past. But he’s also the poster child for petulance – and does anyone really think Larry Rothschild wants to be reunited with the Cubs ace?
2. Promote Ivan Nova and Hector Noesi: the last time the team slotted two rookies into the rotation was in 2008. Enough said on that idea. Although it may be the only option left.
3. Sign Carl Pavano: stopped laughing yet? Remember, this is the same front office that sent a popular outfielder and LH relief prospect to bring in a past failure who would eat innings, coming off a good season. That didn’t work out so well, but Cashman may well be considering the idea. After all, none of us thought he’d bring back Javier Vazquez, either.
4. Put Joba Chamberlain back in the rotation: no matter how much they say otherwise, this team loves jerking the kid around. He’s been everything from Mo’s heir to doghouse sitter so far. As much as they’ve been saying that Joba is in the pen for 2011, no doubt the brass has to be seriously reconsidering that idea at the moment.
5. Ride it out and wait for 2012: there are some big time prospects headed this way in 2012. Players like Dellin Betances, Andrew Brackman, Austin Romine and Brandon Laird. It smacks of the late 80s Yankees, who kept buying stop-gap major leaguers while waiting for the farm to deliver. (Anyone remember how Roberto Kelly was going to save the franchise?)

6. Stockpile relievers, realizing that half of the team’s innings need to come from the ‘pen: great idea, except free-agent relievers rarely work out as intended. The only high-upside reliever left on the market is Rafael Soriano and it’s hard to see the Yankees singing another closer.

Then, there’s my personal favorite…

7. Bring in a player personnel guy. Cashman has proven astute on the business side of baseball and made the Steinbrenner family a ton of money, so its no wonder they love the guy. But his personnel moves leave a lot to be desired. Its simply insane that the team with the highest payroll has holes, and this one now needs a 4th and 5th starter, a set-up reliever, a 4th outfielder and utility infielder. When you look at the players he’s brought in versus who he’s let go, well… that’s a whole other post.

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A bit late on this, but Baseball America has released the New York Yankees Top 10 Prospects for 2011. And here it is:

1. Jesus Montero
2. Gary Sanchez
3. Dellin Betances
4. Manny Banuelos
5. Andrew Brackman
6. Austin Romine
7. Hector Noesi
8. Eduardo Nunez
9. Slade Heathcott
10. Brandon Laird

No real surprises on the list. Montero ranking #1 makes sense, considering he could very well be holding the starting catcher position out of Spring Training at the start of next season. As you can tell by the list, some prospects have made considerable improvements. Sanchez (#7 in ’10) and Brackman (#10 in ’10) have moved up the ranks. The thing that has to catch your eye is Dellin Betances ranking #3 on this list. It just shows how good of a year he’s had, considering he was left off the top 10 list all together in 2010.

With Zach McAllister and Arodys Vizcaino leaving the team, it opened up some new spots for other propsects. New additions to this year’s list include: Noesi, Nunez and Laird.   (more…)

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Third in a series

Ask anyone who knows the great game of baseball, and they’ll tell you the same thing: to win, you need pitching. To win it all, you need even better pitching. Any discussion of where things went wrong in 2010 has to begin with a serious discussion of the ultimate failure of the Yankee pitching staff. Injuries played a part, but the return of Javier Vazquez was underwhelming, AJ Burnett had his worst season ever and the bullpen never seemed to mesh until the Kerry Wood acquisition. The staff needs an overhaul, not a tweak, if the Yankees are to return to the World Series next year. So, who’s in and who’s out for 2011? (Highlighted players below don’t figure to return in 2011)

Under Contract (5):

CC Sabathia, AJ Burnett, Alfredo Aceves, David Robertson, Jonathon Albaladejo

Arbitration Eligible (6):

Boone Logan, Phil Hughes, Joba Chamberlain, Chad Gaudin, Sergio Mitre, Dustin Moseley

Free Agents (5):

Andy Pettite, Mariano Rivera, Javier Vazquez, Royce Ring, Kerry Wood

Minor Leaguers on 40 man roster (5):

Andrew Brackman, Steve Garrison, Hector Noesi, Ivan Nova, Romulo Sanchez

As things stand now, only five players have contracts for next year, and Aceves hasn’t pitched since May because of a bothersome back. Counting on his return is iffy at best and although he was extremely effective in 2009, there is no guarantee he will be ready or effective in 2011. As we dig into the scenarios below, new players are noted by an (*).

Starting Rotation:Projected

1. CC Sabathia

2. Cliff Lee*

3. Phil Hughes

4. Andy Pettite

5. AJ Burnett

Right now, the Yankees return two starters from the 2010 team; Sabathia and Burnett. Hughes is entering his first year of arbitration eligibility, but also figures to return. The key to the 2011 rotation is Pettite, who is contemplating retirement. If he returns for another campaign, the Yankees are reasonably set, only needing one more piece – which figures to come from the free agent market. The obvious target is Cliff Lee, who would team with Sabathia to give the Yanks an awesome 1-2 punch atop the rotation. In that scenario, Burnett slides into the 5 spot (based on his erratic performance, where would you put him?), with Hughes 3 and Pettite 4. If Pettite retires, then the team is in a bind. Jorge de la Rosa (8-7, 4.22 for the Rockies) is an interesting option, in that he’s always been a high strike out guy, with decent peripherals and is left handed. Oh, and he figures to be fairly inexpensive. Another option is the well-traveled Ted Lilly. There are also minor league players who might do, led by Ivan Nova and Hector Noesi. Nova had an extended cup of coffee during Pettite’s injury time in 2010. While he impressed in spurts, he tended to get hit hard his second time through a line-up and at this point might project to fill more of a swingman role, taking the place of Sergio Mitre and Chad Guadin. As far as Javier Vazquez is concerned, I’m sure the Yankees will wish him well as the door is slamming behind him.

Bullpen:Projected

CL Mariano Rivera

RH Joba Chamberlain

RH David Robertson

LH Boone Logan

LH Scott Downs*

SW Ivan Nova

Like the starting rotation, the bullpen hinges on a Core Four member’s off-season free agency decision. Unlike Pettite, who is a 50/50 shot to retire, pretty much everyone expects Mariano Rivera to come back and anchor the pen. Expect Joba Chamberlain, coming into his first year of arbitration eligibility to be back and once again vie for the 8th inning job. If he doesn’t secure it, Joba becomes trade-bait for 2011. Robertson and Logan were wild at times, but both pitched well enough to be invited back this year. The intriguing questions come in the last two spots. Joe Girardi is known to covet left-handed relievers (why else take a chance on Royce Ring?!?), and one of the best in baseball hits the free agent market this year. He’ll be expensive, but expect the Yankees to make a major push for Scott Downs (5-5, 2.64). Finally, the Yankees have a cheaper option for the swingman role in Nova, who can fill the role. Expect Mitre to get a spring training invite if nobody else signs him, but not at his 2010 salary. And only because Girardi has some kind of love affair with the guy, going back to their days in Florida, not based on ability. Wood would be a great addition, were he to return in the 8th inning spot, but the reality is he still wants to close – and he will want closer type money this offseason. There is also the question of what to do with Jonathon Albaladejo, who looks like a classic AAAA pitcher: unhittable at AAA, but eminently more so in the majors.

On a final note, there’s been a lot of talk recently about a Joba & <insert Minor League Prospect> for Zach Greinke trade. I really hope the Yankees aren’t tempted by the idea. Greinke is a nice kid with excellent stuff. But he has emotional and confidence issues pitching for the Royals. New York would tear the kid up within a month, and the Yanks would be stuck with another Ed Whitson for the next two years – and $27 million.

Name Age 2010 Salary 2011 Contract
Alfredo Aceves

28

$ 435,650.00 $ 436,000.00
A.J. Burnett

34

$ 16,500,000.00 $ 16,500,000.00
CC Sabathia

30

$ 24,285,714.00 $ 23,000,000.00
Jonathan Albaladejo

28

$ 403,075.00 Under team control
David Robertson

26

$ 426,650.00 Under team control
Dustin Moseley

29

$ 235,000.00 Arbitration Eligible
Boone Logan

26

$ 405,000.00 Arbitration Eligible
Phil Hughes

24

$ 447,000.00 Arbitration Eligible
Joba Chamberlain

25

$ 487,975.00 Arbitration Eligible
Chad Gaudin

28

$ 737,500.00 Arbitration Eligible
Sergio Mitre

30

$ 850,000.00 Arbitration Eligible
Kerry Wood

33

$ 10,500,000.00 Free Agent
Javier Vazquez

34

$ 11,500,000.00 Free Agent
Andy Pettitte

38

$ 11,750,000.00 Free Agent
Mariano Rivera

41

$ 15,000,000.00 Free Agent
Royce Ring

30

Unknown Free Agent
Potential Free Agent Signings
Jason Frasor

32

$ 2,650,000.00 Free Agent
Scott Downs

34

$ 4,000,000.00 Free Agent
Jorge de la Rosa

29

$ 5,600,000.00 Free Agent
Cliff Lee

32

$ 9,000,000.00 Free Agent
Ted Lilly

34

$ 13,000,000.00 Free Agent
Potential Trade Targets
Zack Greinke (KC)

26

$ 7,250,000.00 $ 13,500,000.00

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Graham Stoneburner/ Courtesy of Mark LoMoglio

2010 MiLB Season Statistics:

Scranton

Jesus Montero: .271AVG 11HR 47RBI .346OBP .460SLG .806OPS

Brandon Laird (TRN & SWB): .300AVG 25HR 94RBI 2SB .361OBP .547SLG .908OPS

Ivan Nova: 125.1IP (W-L, 10-2) 2.80ERA 39ER 94K .257BAA

Zach McAllister: 115.1IP (W-L, 7-8) 4.76ERA 61ER 71K .305BAA

Eric Wordekemper: (TRN & SWB) 53.0IP (W-L, 4-0) 3.23ERA 19ER 53K .237BAA

Trenton

Austin Romine: .272AVG 7HR 51RBI 1SB .340OBP .410SLG .751OPS

Andrew Brackman: (TAM & TRN) 103.0IP (W-L, 7-10) 4.81ERA 55ER 98K .275BAA

George Kontos: (TAM & TRN) 27.1IP (W-L, 0-2) 3.95ERA 12ER 19K .265BAA

Hector Noesi: (TAM & TRN) 120.0IP (W-L, 11-5) 3.00ERA 40ER 116K .225BAA

Ryan Pope: 41.1IP (W-L, 2-6) 4.25ERA 37ER 66K .256BAA

D.J. Mitchell: 114.2IP (W-L, 8-4) 4.32ERA 55ER 78K .265BAA

J. Brent Cox (TAM & TRN) 22.0IP (W-L, 1-1) 6.95ERA 17ER 11K .343BAA

Tampa

Zoilo Almonte: (CSC & TAM) .265AVG 11HR 48RBI 12SB .331OBP .429SLG .760OPS

Dellin Betances: 57.0IP (W-L, 6-1) 1.26ERA 8ER 15BB 68K .153BAA

Jonathan Ortiz: 45.0IP (W-L, 5-1) 18SV 2.60ERA 13ER 50K .196BAA

Adam Olbrychowski: 52.0IP (W-L, 2-2) 2.60ERA 15ER 41K .215BAA

Pat Venditte: 58.0IP (W-L, 2-0) 1.71ERA 5SV 11ER 71K .179BAA

Graham Stoneburner: (CSC & TAM) 109.1IP (W-L, 6-7) 2.47ERA 30ER 112K .192BAA

Charleston

Slade Heathcott: .270AVG 1HR 17RBI 10SB .364OBP .335SLG .700OPS

Brett Marshall: 44.0IP (W-L, 1-2) 4.09ERA 20ER 39K .244BAA

GCL

Gary Sanchez: .376AVG 4HR 26RBI 1SB .450OBP .612SLG 1.062OPS

Cito Culver: .276AVG 2HR 11RBI .336OBP .382SLG .718OPS

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Here is a look at how some of the Yankees top prospects are doing thus far:

Scranton

Jesus Montero: .250AVG 6HR 32RBI .313OBP .414SLG .727OPS

Mark Melancon: 44.2IP (W-L, 5-1) 6SV 3.43ERA 17ER 51K .280BAA

Ivan Nova: 84.0IP (W-L, 5-2) 3.00ERA 28ER 64K .266BAA

Zach McAllister: 85.0IP (W-L, 6-5) 4.24ERA 40ER 52K .275BAA

Eric Wordekemper: (TRN & SWB) 41.2IP (W-L, 3-0) 2.38ERA 11ER 41K .244BAA

Trenton

Austin Romine: .290AVG 5HR 42RBI 1SB .370OBP .435SLG .806OPS

Brandon Laird: .293AVG 19HR 79RBI 2SB .348OBP .550SLG .899OPS

Andrew Brackman: (TAM & TRN) 70.0IP (W-L, 5-6) 5.01ERA 39ER 65K .276BAA

Hector Noesi: (TAM & TRN) 95.0IP (W-L, 10-3) 2.27ERA 24ER 101K .214BAA

Jeremy Bleich: 41.1IP (W-L, 3-2) 4.79ERA 22ER 26K .236BAA

Tampa

Zoilo Almonte: (CSC & TAM) .287AVG 10HR 38RBI 10SB .357OBP .478SLG .835OPS

Dellin Betances: 23.0IP (W-L, 2-0) 0.39ERA 1ER 3BB 27K .104BAA

George Kontos: 8.2IP (W-L, 0-1) 3.12ERA 3ER 7K .200BAA

Jonathan Ortiz: 30.0IP (W-L, 3-0) 14SV 2.40ERA 8ER 30K .194BAA

Adam Olbrychowski: 30.2IP (W-L, 2-1) 2.64ERA 9ER 23K .245BAA

Pat Venditte: 42.0IP (W-L, 0-0) 1.93ERA 2SV 9ER 51K .184BAA

Graham Stoneburner: (CSC & TAM) 81.0IP (W-L, 5-6) 2.00ERA 18ER 83K .170BAA

Charleston

Slade Heathcott: .267AVG 0HR 8RBI 6SB .350OBP .322SLG .672OPS

GCL

Gary Sanchez: .400AVG 3HR 11RBI .500OBP .800SLG 1.300OPS (Only 30AB’s)

Cito Culver: .300AVG 0HR 1RBI .333OBP .350SLG .683OPS (Only 20AB’s)

Brett Marshall: 8.0IP (W-L, 0-0) 2.25ERA 2ER 8K .194BAA

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From the Yankees Official Website:

PHOENIX — Yankees Double-A prospects Austin Romine and Hector Noesi have been tabbed to participate in the 12th annual XM All-Star Futures Game, to be played on July 11 at 6 p.m. ET at Angel Stadium.

Romine, 21, is considered one of the Yankees’ top catching prospects and was ranked by Baseball America as the Yankees’ No. 2 prospect entering the 2010 season. He will play for the USA team.

The 12th annual Futures Game can be seen live on MLB.TV, ESPN2 and ESPN2 HD and followed live on MLB.com’s Gameday. In addition, XM Radio will broadcast play-by-play coverage of the event live on XM 175. MLB.com will also provide complete coverage before, during and after the game.

A second-round selection in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft, Romine was hitting .283 with three home runs and 34 RBIs for Double-A Trenton at the time of the announcement.

Romine was the Florida State League “Hitter of the Year” in 2009 while playing for Class A Tampa and said during Spring Training this year that he was looking forward to continuing his development at the higher levels.

“You can always hit higher,” said Romine, who batted .276 for Tampa in 2009. “I always shoot for about .300 — it’s a big mark. I also want to control the staff in Double-A and build upon those relationships. Everything kind of flowed, and I liked that.”

Noesi, 23, will represent the World team. The right-hander was signed as a non-drafted free agent by the Yankees in 2004 and was 3-1 with a 2.31 ERA through five starts at Double-A Trenton, having earlier posted a 5-2 record with a 2.72 ERA in eight starts for Tampa this season.

Noesi entered the 2010 season averaging 8.54 strikeouts and just 1.55 walks per nine innings in his professional career, impressive ratios that he has kept in his arsenal this season, having struck out 82 and walked 11 in 78 innings between the two levels.

Earlier this season, the 6-foot-2, 175-pound hurler was named the Eastern League’s Pitcher of the Week for the period ending June 6.

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John Sickel of MinorLeagueBall recently listed the Yankees top 20 prospects going into 2010. I am going to include the list with his grades, but without his write ups and analysis. Click the previous link to see his write up of the players.

  1. Jesus Montero, C, Grade A
  2. Austin Romine, C, Grade B
  3. Manny Banuelos, LHP, Grade B
  4. Zach McAllister, RHP, Grade B
  5. Slade Heathcott, OF, Grade B
  6. Mark Melancon, RHP, Grade B-: Borderline C+
  7. Gary Sanchez, C, Grade C+
  8. John Murphy, C, Grade C+
  9. Kelvin De Leon, OF, Grade C+
  10. D.J. Mitchell, RHP, Grade C+
  11. Wilkin De La Rosa, LHP, Grade C+
  12. David Adams, 2B, Grade C+
  13. Corban Joseph, 2B-3B, Grade C+
  14. Adam Warren, RHP, Grade C+
  15. Neil Medchill, OF, Grade C+
  16. David Phelps, RHP, Grade C+
  17. Andrew Brackman, RHP, Grade C
  18. Jose Ramirez, RHP, Grade C
  19. Jeremy Bleich, LHP, Grade C
  20. Bryan Mitchell, RHP, Grade C

OTHERS (All Grade C): Sean Black, RHP; Gavin Brooks, LHP; Jairo Heredia, RHP; Jamie Hoffman, OF; Brandon Laird, 3B; DeAngelo Mack, OF; Melky Mesa, OF; Juan Miranda, 1B; Hector Noesi, RHP; Ivan Nova, RHP; Eduardo Nunez, SS; Kevin Russo, 2B; Romulo Sanchez, RHP; Graham Stoneburner, RHP; Brad Suttle, 3B; Pat Venditte, RHP-LHP; Kevin Whelan, RHP.

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