Thursday, May 18, 2017

Quick Hit: Yankees Sign RHP Kaleb Ort

The New York Yankees have made a relatively minor and small signing this week when the team landed right-handed pitcher Kaleb Ort from the Joliet Slammers of the Independent Frontier League. Ort has been signed to a minor-league deal and it is unclear and unreported at this time as to where his professional career will begin inside the organization but now is as good of a time as any to meet him so let’s do it.

Ort has appeared in 20 games thus far this season for the Joliet Slammers, 12 as a starting pitcher, and has posted a 3-4 record with a 6.05 ERA with 61 strikeouts and 42 walks. In his age 24-season I have to admit that those numbers are far from eye-popping so I dug a little deeper and found out that his ERA is a perfect example of what a small sample size can do to a pitcher. Ort struggled early on in the 2017 campaign but in his last two starts he allowed just one run combined with six hits in 13 innings of work. Obviously those two starts against Washington and Schaumburg were enough to open up some eyes inside the Yankees organization en route to earning him the Pitcher of the Week award in the Frontier League.

Ort throws his fastball comfortably at 95 MPH and can touch 97 MPH or above when he needs it. Ort also commands a plus slider in his repertoire but his lack of a strong third pitch may land him in the Yankees bullpen eventually, not that there is anything wrong with that by any means. Ort may be one of those guys we never hear from again after this post or he may be the story we are all talking about here in a few years after he takes the Minor Leagues by storm and makes it to the big stadium in the Bronx. That’s why we cover these relatively minor signings when others don’t because like the New York Lottery and their slogan, “Hey you never know.” 

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