Sunday, March 8, 2015

Meet a Prospect: Mat Gamel

Mat Gamel is the latest prospect to come through the system of the New York Yankees after signing a minor league deal with the team late in the week. Mat joins his brother and current Yankees farm hand Ben Gamel who is spending his time in Double-A with the Trenton Thunder organization. Mat is a former first round pick of the Milwaukee Brewers and a former Top Prospect in the Brewers organization and will now fight for playing time with Mike Ford, Kyle Roller, Garrett Jones, Mark Texeira and others. Let's meet the guy who faces the uphill battle of staying healthy and winning playing time in the Bronx, Mat Gamel.

Mathew Lawrence Gamel was born on July 26, 1985 and spent his High School years at Bishop Kenny High School in Jacksonsville, Florida. Gamel then attended Chipola College in Marianna, Florida where he caught the attention of the Milwaukee Brewers who drafted him in the 2005 Major League Baseball First Year Players Draft. Gamel had a fruitful minor league career with Milwaukee including a 33 game hitting streak in 2007 with the High-A Brevard County Manatees before being elected to the All-Stars Futures Game in 2008. Gamel was a September call up on September, 1 in 2008 and made his debut two days later when he struck out as a pinch hitter.

Gamel spent time bouncing back and forth for Milwaukee up until May of 2012 when the injury train hit him and possibly derailed his career. On May 22, 2012 Gamel had to go under the knife to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament, more commonly known as an ACL, and missed the rest of the 2012 season. Gamel came to Spring Training camp in 2013 and actually tore the same ligament again causing him to miss the entire 2013 season as well. Milwaukee essentially gave up on Gamel after the 2013 season season and was put on waivers and claimed by the Chicago Cubs. Gamel's Cubs tenure did not last long as two months later he was non-tendered and granted his free agency.

Gamel latched on with the Atlanta Braves before the 2014 season but once again re-injured himseld during workouts before spring training was was subsequently released by Atlanta on February 18, 2014. Gamel did not play during the 2014 season and has now latched on with the New York Yankees for the 2015 season. Will he finally stay healthy and regain his top prospect status? Who knows but personally I cannot wait to find out. Welcome to the family Mat, almost literally since Ben is here, and we hope you enjoy your stay in the pinstripes.

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