Yankees: Profiling The Bottom Tier Of Their Top 30 Prospects
#28 Jorge Guzman RHP
Jorge Guzman came to the Yankees last November in the trade that sent Brian McCann to the Houston Astros. As part of the same deal, the Yankees also received their #11 prospect, Albert Abreu.
Not a big guy, he’s 6’2″ and weighs only 185 lbs. But he can bring it and has topped out in the 100-102 MPH range. When he settles in, though, he stays in the mid to high 90’s with his dominating fastball.
At this stage of his career, the most appropriate adjective that can be applied to his skillset is “unrefined.” Guzman has a power arm, but the trouble is that, often, he doesn’t know where his pitches are going, especially when he tries to amp his fastball up to the 100 mph range.
Still, his stats from his first season in pro ball are impressive. In 13 appearances as both a starter and reliever, Guzman worked 40 innings, striking out 54 batters while surrendering 17 BB.
He has a power slider in his arsenal, but again, control of the pitch is limited. Guzman is also working on a change-up that is in its infant stages.
At this point, he would seem to be best targeted as a reliever on the Yankees staff, but he’s a long ways away from the Bronx.
MLB.com sums up his current status this way:
"“Though Guzman’s control and command require a lot of refinement, he did make encouraging improvement from his first pro season to his second. There’s a high likelihood that he winds up as a reliever rather than as a starter, though he’d still have high upside as a potential closer if he could find the strike zone.”"
Guzman’s ability to find the strike zone on a consistent basis will largely determine how quickly he moves up the ranks on the Yankees depth chart.