Pitchers On The Farm
By Tyler Angelo
The 2015 New York Yankees pitching rotation has as many holes as a tennis racket. The health woes mixed with the incomplete rotation has left fans and critics wondering where do we go from here? Things have become even more suspicious considering that the Yanks have failed to fix any of the problems through free agency thus far. So the only logical solution that nearly every other team would view, but the Yankees seemingly forgot exists, is the farm system. We witnessed a golden arm come emerge from our system last year in Dellin Betances and a surprise showing from Shane Greene. There are two big pitchers stashed in our farms that can contribute in 2015.
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Part of the Killer B’s, Banuelos has displayed tremendous stuff that can make him a dominant pitcher at the next level. At 23 years-old he has a fastball that is in the low to mid 90’s and has an above average changeup to keep the batters off balance. He is working on a third pitch to add to his repertoire in the slider or curveball. A hard throwing lefty can be exactly what the Yankees need and failed to land in free agency. However, the front office is bringing him along slowly and rightfully so. Banuelos spent last season working his way back from Tommy John surgery and regaining control on the mound. He struggled with a 4.11 ERA and 3.6 BB/9. However, Man-Ban has a chance to prove himself in the first half of a full season in 2015. He can be a mid-season call up and become the next big lefty in the Bronx.
The 23 year-old right handed pitcher has been gaining hype over the past season. Mitchell has always been talented and had the stuff to be a big prospect but has had a hard time putting it all together to be consistent. He has a heavy fastball that is thrown in the mid 90’s and utilizes a sharp, breaking curveball as his second pitch. He has been working on his changeup as a third pitch and is throwing it in the high 8o’s. Mitchell saw some major league time last season in which he pitched 11 innings in split duties. It was such a small sample size that you have to almost feel like the Yankees weren’t giving him a large evaluation. A few of the problems Mitchell runs in to are what hurt his consistency and success. He has a hard time replicating his motion and release point. Since he can’t find a consistent release point with his pitches it hurts his accuracy. Also, he has a tendency to tip his offspeed pitches by changing his arm slot and motion. Mitchell has a good shot at seeing big league time this season and can have an extended opportunity to work out his kinks.
There are a few other names to keep track of going into 2015; however, they won’t be seen this year because of their young age. Luis Severino is only 20-years-old but tearing his way through the farm system with his powerful fastball and stellar changeup. From A ball to AA, Severino threw 113.1 innings and racked up 127 strike outs. On top of that he boasted an impressive 2.46 ERA and 10.1 k/9.
Ian Clarkin, who was drafted in 2013 and is only 19-years-old has been drawing attention as well. In his second season in the farms Clarkin chucked 75 innings and put up a 9.0 k/9 on top of his 3.12 ERA. Another pitcher that goes with honorable mentions is former hitting coach Kevin Long’s son Jaron Long. He finished 2014 12-5 with 144.1 innings pitched. Long racked up a total of 122 strikeouts with a 2.18 ERA.
Lastly, look for Jacob Lindgren to arrive on the scene in 2015. He was drafted after leading Mississippi State to the College World Series and showed why the Yankees used a pick on him in 2014. Lindgren held opponents to a .124 batting average against and boasted an amazing .84 out of the bullpen. He can potentially make Yankee fans forget about David Robertson if he lives up to shutdown hype.