During the offseason, the Yankees spent approximately half a billion dollars to revamp their ball club for the 2014 season. Only one of their acquisitions was for the Yankees bullpen; lefty Matt Thornton. Brian Cashman was adamant the Yankees weren’t going to look into the free agent market in order to search for bullpen help, which could mean the Yankees would rely on their own homegrown talent to be a part of the bullpen equation.
The Yankees already have David Robertson (a homegrown talent) locked in as the closer in the final year of his contract and if the Yankees like what they see in Michael Pineda and slot him in as the fifth starter, they could use David Phelps and Adam Warren for the bullpen as well. Adam Warren and David Phelps were in the bullpen for parts of the 2013 season and both impressed manager Joe Girardi. However, if they were to go to the bullpen, the Yankees would have to figure out their roles. Would Adam Warren once again slot in as the long man, a job he did very well in 2013? Would the Yankees consider moving David Phelps to the set-up role, a role once occupied by David Robertson when Mariano Rivera was once a part of the team?
“For me, I like Phelps as a back-end reliever, not a long man,” a scout said to the New York Daily News. “I say that because he throws strikes and he’s not afraid. I like Betances, too, but I’m not sure of his ability to pitch under pressure.”
The Yankees are taking a look at Dellin Betances, who has a legitimate shot to make the Yankees roster as bullpen help. Betances is certainly making a case for himself with 6.1 IP, giving up no runs in the process. Another homegrown talent getting some attention is Dan Burawa, a 12th-round draft pick in 2012.
“I like Burawa a lot too,” the same scout said. “He’s got a big arm but he’s struggled with his command, although not so much this spring. If he gets his command down, they could have something there as another late-inning guy.”
The Yankees don’t have many options in their farm system, and Brian Cashman is trying to place the pieces together without going into the free agent market. For a team that has money and uses it for upgrades, you don’t normally hear of homegrown talent making the roster.