Thursday, February 21, 2013

Meet A Prospect : Francisco Rondon

Francisco Rondon was born on April 19th, 1988 in Santo Domingo, Distrito Nacional, Dominican Republic. With a 6'1" 160 lb frame throwing the ball from the left side you can see why the Yankees signed him as a free agent way back in 2006.

While spending his first five seasons in A Ball or lower the Yankees and their fans were starting to consider Rondon a bust before his breakout 2011 season. Way back in 2006 when Rondon signed he started in the Dominican Summer League for the Yankees and would spend both the 2006 and 2007 seasons there putting up a combined line of 5-4 with a mid 3.37 ERA in 88 IP while striking out 72 batters for a 1.43 WHIP. The next three seasons from 2008-2010 he would spend a full season in the Gulf Coast League, for the Staten Island Yankees, and for the Charleston Riverdogs respectively putting up less than impressive numbers in all three seasons. Entering the 2011 season the Yankees decided to demote Rondon back to Staten Island and it benefited Rondon while he put up a perfect 6.2 IP before the Yankees decided to move him back up to Charleston. While in his second run with Charleston Rondon would put up a 2-3 record with a 4.67 ERA but lowered his WHIP to 1.356 and struck out 42 batters in only 32 IP.

Rondon spent time with three of the Yankees minor league teams in 2012 including the Tampa Yankees, the Trenton Thunder, and the Scranton Wilkes-Barre Yankees (now known as the Rail Riders). While with the three upper levels of the Yankees system Rondon put up a pitching line of 5-0 with a 3.93 ERA in 44 games and 71 IP. While he had an impressive 80 K's he had a not so impressive 1.465 WHIP so it was sort of surprising, for myself anyway, that the Yankees added him to the 40 man roster and protected him from the Rule 5 draft this season. The time is now because he holds a very valuable slot on the 40 man and looks to start the 2013 season in Scranton so keep an eye out for him late in this season in the Bronx.

ETA : Late 2013 

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)