6 Starting Pitchers the Yankees Could Call-Up from the Minors in 2011

As it stands right now the Yankees likely opening day rotation is CC Sabathia, A.J. Burnett, Phil Hughes, Ivan Nova and Sergio Mitre. It is pretty safe to say that is not what they imagined it would be when the 2010 season ended.

They’re probably still hoping that Andy Pettitte decides not to retire or that a trade will present itself before the season starts, but the Yankees could be disappointed yet again on both of those fronts. So it is likely that the 2011 Yankees will have to turn to their farm system to help them out this year. Luckily for them they have a good amount of starters that they’ll be able to call on if either or both Nova or Mitre fail.

Here is a list of the six starters that are likely to be called upon in 2011:

  1. Hector Noesi, RHP, 24 – Noesi would probably be the first starter called up because he’s on the 40-man roster and has some Triple-A experience already. He’s got a fastball that sits in the 91-94 mph range that occasionally hits as high as 96. He also throws a curveball and changeup.
  2. Andrew Brackman, RHP, 25 – Brackman is also on the 40-man roster, but is second on this list because he hasn’t pitched at Triple-A yet. He could leapfrog Noesi if he has a stronger showing at the beginning of the 2011 season though. He throws a fastball that ranges from 91-95 mph and mixes it with a knuckle curve and a changeup.
  3. David Phelps, RHP, 24 – Phelps probably had a better 2010 than either Noesi or Brackman, but because he isn’t on the 40-man roster yet and has less impressive stuff he’s slightly behind them on the depth chart. That said, he has already tossed 70.1 innings in Triple-A with a 3.07 ERA. He has an outside chance of being the first one called-up. Phelps throws a fastball that sits at 89-92 mph and occasionally hits 95. He also throws a curveball, slider, and changeup. He primarily relies on stellar command.
  4. Adam Warren, RHP, 23 – Warren is the youngest name on this list so far and only has 54.1 innings of experience in Double-A which is why he’s so far down this list. He does have an impressive mix of strikeout ability with control that means he could move up the ladder faster than expected. Armed with a fastball that sits at 92-94 mph, he also uses a two-seamer, a curveball, a slider, and a changeup.
  5. D.J. Mitchell, RHP, 23 – Mitchell had a mixed season in 2010. He had a 4.06 ERA in 133 innings at Double-A and a 3.57 ERA in three starts at Triple-A. Overall in the minors his K/9 is 7.3 and his B/9 is 3.3. None of that is bad, but compared to the other pitchers on this list it is slightly disappointing. Still he is an impressive pitcher who primarily relies on a sinker that comes in at 90-93 mph mixing in a curveball and changeup as well.
  6. Dellin Betances, RHP, 22 – Betances is on the 40-man roster, but despite that he’s last on this list because he is the youngest and has only made three starts at the Double-A level where he is expected to begin the 2011 season. Despite that, he is probably the most talented out of anyone named on this list so the Yankees will have to resist the urge to call him up before he is ready. Realistically he’s more of a 2012 option. Betances throws a fastball in the 94-97 mph range and backs it up with a plus curveball and changeup. In 2010 he showed the best command of his career, if he can continue that positive trend he’ll be one heck of a pitcher.

These pitchers are probably a big reason why Yankees general manager Brian Cashman has resisted making a trade for a starter this offseason. Teams know that the Yankees are desperate so the asking price has been high. Meanwhile, he has these six nearly ready for the big leagues and more behind them (Manuel Banuelos, Graham Stoneburner, and Brett Marshall). Even if 2011 is bleak, 2012 and beyond will be bright.

About Rob Abruzzese

Rob Abruzzese created Bronx Baseball Daily in 2008 just before graduating from Brooklyn College. He currently serves BBD as its editor and works as a reporter at the Brooklyn Daily Eagle. Follow Rob on Twitter @RobAbruzzese.
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30 Responses to 6 Starting Pitchers the Yankees Could Call-Up from the Minors in 2011

  1. Mindkind says:

    wow I love these types of posts. Nothing I love more than prospects!! And finally my favorite team has a lot of them. And not only that they have the most important ones in my view…PITCHING prospects! From the list I’m hoping Brackman reaches the rotation in ’11 to stay. Then Betances in ’12.
    In 2012 the starting rotation might look like this:


    then in 2013 maybe like this:


    If those pitchers fullfil their upside the 2013 rotation is championship material!

    What do you think?

    • That many rookies or second year players in the rotation is an extremely long shot, but I like your thinking!

    • smurfy says:

      I’m loving it, but wondering why the Yankees let go the Comeback Player of the Year 2011 and Cy Young winner of 2012, AJ Burnett?

    • Yomommasan says:

      Geez, Mind-dump, you are kidding, right??? The LAST thing in the world ANYONE should do is project developing starting pitchers into the future. Why do you think it is you have to have 6 pitching prospects to develop ONE ML pitcher????? B/c they don't work out, get injured, get sidetracked by the nitelife or whatever, but developing ML talent is a crapshoot and developing ML pitching is a BIG crapshoot. Only thing certain in what you said is that what you project WILL NOT be accurate. NONE of those guys will have built up to ML innings levels by 2012 OR 2013 so none will be useful to the team except with big innings limitations – remember Joba and Hughes??? Do we really need to go thru that s*** again???????

    • NYYTRUEBLUE says:

      You forgot Noesi. I liked the way he looked in the 2 games he pitched in. I say don't trade any of these kids for any of the has beens that are going to be available soon. It's time we have a staff that is home grown!

  2. Brackman was clocked higher than 95 before the surgery. If he doesn't make MLB as a starter, I like his chances, along with Betances of breaking into the bullpen like Chamberlain in 2007.

    Another name to watch for that role is Ryan Pope who has already begun the conversion from starter!

    • Brackman was hitting 97 post surgery, but he seems to have tweaked his mechanics that has taken away some velocity but given him better command. Velocity is nice, but without command it doesn't mean much so I'm glad he made the change.

  3. John says:

    All prospects are suspects, and you people are expecting miracles from suspects. Maybe one might just make it good in the majors, and you people are expecting every suspect to make a big impact on the major league club, unbeleiveable.

    • Ain't nothing wrong with some enthusiastic optimism for the kids. I think you're misreading if you sense actual expectation. Let's just say we see a trend to develop our pitching from within, and we like it!

    • I don't think anyone has expressed utterly unrealistic expectations. Aside from maybe the comment about Burnett winning the 2012 Cy Young. I just wanted to discuss the possible replacements this season if some starters fail or get hurt. I didn't really mean to express that any of these pitchers would necessarily be good.

  4. joe says:

    I know Cashman is taking alot heat for not making many moves but I do like the idea that he is protecting his pitching prospects.The SF Giants won the world series with homegrown pitching.I think this is the way to go and if King Felix becomes available Cashman will go after him.

    • John says:

      Remember the Giants were way down in the standings in the NL west and their picks were high on the list. The Yankees on the other hand win , win , win and their draft picks are the garbage of the lot. Also remember who drafts for the yankees along with Cashman seem to pick pitchers coming off surgery or going to need surgery it's time to dumb Cashman and whoever else is responsible for the draft picks. Honestly the only draft pick of pitchers who look decent is Hughes and that isn't saying much. Chamberlain is a bum. Overweight and doesn't work out properly.

      • I admit I don't know much about the Giants farm system or how they developed their pitching, but I am extremely optimistic about the arms on the farm for the Yankees!

        Whether they are promoted or traded for other pieces, I expect will be loaded with great pitching for most of this decade!!!

      • The Yankees are stocked with minor league pitching. Also to my knowledge the only pitcher they ever drafted who needed surgery right away was Brackman. Being that he is one of the positive prospects I can't complain about that. I don't see what the problem is. Drafting pitching is one thing that Cashman and Damon Oppenheimer (the guy who is actually in charge of the draft) have done very well.

        What's the problem here?

      • d says:

        hughes is going to be a star, try being a real fan at heart and appreciating grooming great talent. We had a awesome season last year alcs, teams just don't win ws every single year. Obviously you dont't remember the 80's I do and loved every bit of it and it makes now that much sweeter

        [edited by Rob Abruzzese – see you can say exactly what you wanted to say without the name calling.]

        • John says:

          I don't remember the 80's you have to be kidding. I lived through the late 40's and through the 1964 season. The 1965-1973 seasons were the worse for any yankee fan. The reason for them being so bad is because CBS owned the team and did nothing to make them winners. They had loads of suspects, Steve Whitaker, Roger Repoz,Jerry Lumpe, Horace Clarke, Jack Cullen,Mike Hegan, Jake Gibbs, Fritz Peterson,Gene Michael, Tony Solaita and Dooley Womack just to name a few. There was no excitement there. Thank God that George bought the Yankees and poured the money in to make the right trades, sign the right F/A to make them the team they are for the past 20 years. So take you BS ideas and shove them where the sun doesn't shine.

    • d says:

      change gm's take a look around baseball, umm cashman has been doing a great job. I guess you just want us to have a 100 billion dollar roster. No need to keep spending, we have lots of talent in the farm n cash is grooming them. If the right trade presents itself cash will move on it. You must have forgot cash offered Lee a monster deal he just didn't want to pitch for us. pay attention

  5. Tanned Tom says:

    First I love these articles. Reliable info about minor leaguers is always hard to come by. I am relieved that finally this organization is showing some patience with their prospects. My main hope is that we change GM's.

  6. Joe Holland Jr says:

    Yanks not only need to add pitching. They also need a couple of role players. Like Jim Thome or even Manny Ramerez. Lets admit Posada is not a DH kind of player. Imagine having one of these guys or both in the lineup. New murders Row. The Red Sox weakness is definetly pitching. So why not get some extra bats like these guys to put more pressure on there staff. And what happens when someone goes down to injury. I just dont care for this talk about Andrew Jones. He is not the answer hes bat is not what it use to be and his fielding skills are getting worse each year. I think giving Manny a one year deal and rotate him in and out with Gardner will have a big pay off and keep our outfield healthy. I believe bringing Manny to the yanks would really pissoff Red Sox fans and believe it or not he would love to play for the yanks and show everyone he still can play for a new extenstion. Plus he from NY Born and raised.

    • Mike S. says:

      No to Manny. Period.

    • I think you would have to make a case that Posada is not a DH kind of player, which you have not, before worrying about Manny or Thome. There just isn't a place for them on this roster. It's crazy to think that some fans want to sign either of these guys, who will probably cost at least $5 million each, for what? 100 at bats at the most? Outside of anything but a video game that doesn't make sense.

  7. Franco Kotos says:

    Tjome is signed with the Twins…the Yankees are looking into Andruw Jones…

  8. Mike Sommer says:

    I've never been impressed by Brackman and his stats are downright awful. Currently 2-4, 6.80 at SWB. Overall minor league stats 14-27, 5.09, and he's now 25. I just don't see it.

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