Friday, November 27, 2015

Meet a Prospect: Johnny Barbato

Johnny Barbato was the young man that the San Diego Padres sent to the New York Yankees in the offseason trade that sent relief pitcher Shawn Kelley, and his horse mask I can confirm, to the West Coast a couple offseasons ago. It was originally thought that Barbato would need Tommy John surgery immediately following the deal but those reports turned out to be false leaving Barbato healthy and available to pitch well in both Double-A and Triple-A this season. Barbato pitched well enough to catch the eye of many people inside the Yankees organization, and probably a few of the scouts outside the Yankees organization as well, this season and was added to the 40 man roster this week in order to be protected from the Rule 5 Draft. Barbato is now a Yankee for the long haul so now is as good of a time as any to meet him. Let’s Meet a Prospect: The Johnny Barbato Edition.

Barbato stands 6'2" and throws right handed from a 185 lbs. frame with a 94-97 MPH fastball, a knuckle curve which he uses as a strike out pitch and an average changeup. The best part of Barbato is his control that saw him strikeout almost two for every one walk in his career. Barbato likely sits ahead of Nick Rumbelow and Nick Goody on the depth chart and is currently side by side or right behind Caleb Cotham and Branden Pinder as far as right handed pitchers go.


In 2015 Barbato split time between the Double-A Trenton Thunder and the Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes Barre RailRiders and posted this overall pitching line. This was well enough to warrant being added to the 40 man roster despite a slew of other candidates seemingly ahead of him on the depth chart. I don’t pretend to know more than the Yankees and their advisers that watch players like Barbato every day, I was quite vocal about the protection of Mason Williams in 2014 and I am still cleaning egg off my face for that, so if the Yankees protected him then I agree that it was a good move. Welcome to the family Mr. Barbato, officially. 

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