Spring Training Stock Report: 3/10

Moving Up:

Alfredo Aceves. The right-hander is making a strong case for a spot in the rotation after tossing six hitless innings this spring. If he continues to pitch this well, he could force the Yankees to send either Phil Hughes or Joba Chamberlain to the Electric City.

Jon Weber. The journeyman outfielder is a long shot to make the roster, but he’s shown some promise at the plate and is currently tied for the team lead in hits, doubles and runs batted in. Marcus Thames and Greg Golson probably have a better shot at a bench role, but a strong spring could help Weber get a promotion in the event of an injury.

Nick Johnson. After dealing with minor back injuries during the first few games of the spring, Nick the Stick has finally settled in, hitting two home runs against the Pirates on Tuesday. His durability will always be a cause for concern, but if he finds his power swing, the Yankees will have a tremendous hitter for the two-spot.

Going Down:

Jamie Hoffman. The Rule V draft pick has a legitimate chance to make the big league roster as a backup outfielder, but he’ll need to pick up the pace if he wants to get a serious consideration and beat out Greg Golson or Marcus Thames. Hoffman currently has two hits in 16 at-bats.

Jonathan Albaladejo. The right-hander has had his ups and downs since joining the Yankees, but he looked great in Triple-A last season. That said, he’s yet to impress on the mound this spring, allowing seven earned runs in one and one-third of an innings.

Joba Chamberlain. Its still early, but Chamberlain has been horrible so far. I understand that it takes time for pitchers to adjust to live batters, but his lack of control and eleven earned runs in three and two-thirds innings does not stack up well against Aceves’ performance. Chamberlain has loads of talent, but he’ll need to keep the disastrous outings to a minimum if he wants to stay out of the bullpen.

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5 Responses to Spring Training Stock Report: 3/10

  1. Greg F. says:

    I would hope that the Yankees don't see it the same way you do. Pitching two innings or getting 20 plate appearances should do absolutely nothing to a player's stock.

  2. Dan LaTorraca says:

    Greg, perhaps you should take another look at what I wrote. I acknowledged that the spring is still young and there is plenty of time for players to increase their stock.

    When putting together a "weekly" installment article, you want to start from the beginning of the spring and have it run to the end of spring training. You have to start somewhere so you can further gauge the improvements of certain players.

    That said, you can't tell me that issuing six walks in 2.3 innings will raise a pitcher's stock. It simply does not work that way. I'm not writing off Joba Chamberlain, or Albaladejo for that matter. I am simply saying that their performances so far were not great. On that same hand, we can acknowledge that Aceve's performance helps his stock. It does not mean that he'll go into 2010 as the fifth starter, but I think we can agree that it does not hurt his chances.

    Overall, ST stats are not very important. But it will be interesting to track performances over the next month or so.

  3. smurfy says:

    I thought it remarkable, the calm with which Aceves threw a fastball right down the middle for strike three. I had been gathering wool, so didn't see the prior pitch, but I was amazed the hitter didn't swing. — I just realized – that was a change, and took the hitter by surprise. Me, too.

    I have a feeling coming thru my tin hat that that's what Joba needs: a plan. Betcha he's confused, not focussed and confident, thus wild. Think he needs some bullpen time to simplify things, or a stint in Electric City to better plot. If he doesn't flip his own switch in the next month.

    I take it, Dan, that's Scranton? I do remember hearing of a famous dam in Wilkes Barre.

  4. Rick says:

    I am a huge Jon Weber fan. I hope Jon gets his shot at the bigs this year.

  5. Unfortunately I don't expect to see much Weber in the Bronx this summer. It's certainly possible, but it's about as likely as it was of seeing Shelley Duncan last year and that hardly happened at all. At this point he seems like a career minor leaguer being passed up by guys who have upside like Colin Curtis or David Winfree.