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  1. #1

    Claussen Back In A Hurry

    http://www.nj.com/yankees/ledger/ind...1725254510.xml
    Yankees minor leagues: Lefty Claussen back in a hurry


    Tuesday, May 27, 2003
    BY DAN CASTELLANO
    Star-Ledger Staff
    The Yankees are surprised about the rapid rehabilitation of left-handed pitcher Brandon Claussen, who underwent ligament transplant surgery on his left elbow last June and is not only pitching already, but doing quite, promoted yesterday from Class-A Tampa to Triple-A Columbus.
    Claussen, 24, who led all minor-league pitchers in strikeouts with 220 in 2001, pitched in only 15 games last season before undergoing "Tommy John surgery" and missing the rest of the year. As soon as he could throw again, he went to the Yankees' minor-league complex in Tampa, Fla., to work out, then began throwing batting practice in spring training.
    Before the move to Columbus, Claussen threw 22 innings for Tampa and was 2-0 with a 1.64 ERA, striking out 26 batters and walking three.
    He is ahead of the predictions for a return and, after a few Triple-A starts, could be a candidate for the major-league staff.

    Hot prospects:
    Matt Carson is the hitter to watch. The fifth-round draft choice out of BYU is playing left field for Battle Creek, the Yankees Class-A team in the Midwest League. After a rough start -- 0-for-16 to begin the season, a .189 average at the end of April -- Carson has jumped his average to .296, with three home runs and 12 RBI. The pitcher opening eyes is left-hander Brad Halsey, 22, who leads the Florida State League in victories with his 8-3 record for Tampa. His ERA is 3.39 and he has 42 strikeouts and 11 walks in 66 1/3 innings.

    Disappointment:
    It has to be Bronson Sardinha, a first-round selection in 2001. The native of Hawaii hit .323 for Staten Island last season but, moving up to Tampa, is hitting .191 with no home runs and 45 strikeouts in 173 at-bats.
    Player of the week:
    Trenton third baseman Brian Myrow, 26, who raised his average to .308, has taken over the RBI lead in the Eastern League with 41. The pitcher of the week is Battle Creek right-hander Jose Valdez, who won his third straight with an 11-2 victory over South Bend on Saturday, allowing one earned run on eight hits in seven innings, walking one and striking out seven.
    Toughest week:
    How about Erick Almonte, who filled in for Derek Jeter for a month-and-a-half as the Yankees shortstop, then went down to Columbus when Jeter was healthy? After one game with the Clippers, Almonte, 25, suffered a right knee injury and had to go on the disabled list.
    On the way up:
    Center fielder Kevin Thompson, 23, was second in the Florida State League with a .331 average when he was promoted to Double-A Trenton, where he is leading off and is hitting .286 in his first seven games in the Eastern League.
    Pitching lines of the week:
    Left-hander Andy Beal, 24, had both the best and worst lines of the week. His final start for Trenton was on May 17 and he improved to 3-0 with a complete game three-hitter in a 2-1 victory over Bowie. He was then promoted to Columbus, and his first start there was a disaster -- three innings, seven hits, six runs, all earned, one walk and one wild pitch in an 8-4 loss to Pawtucket.
    Manager's comment:
    When Trenton manager Stump Merrill was asked about the Yankees moving four of his top players to Columbus, including Beal, his ace pitcher, he said: "It's normal. Nothing they do surprises me. It's something we don't worry about."
    Veteran watch:
    Columbus signed 34-year-old deaf outfielder Curtis Pride to fill in after Juan Rivera was brought up by the Yankees to replace the injured Bernie Williams. They also signed SS Jose Nieves, 27, who played for the Angels last season.
    The Henson watch:
    The Yankees third baseman of the future has gotten hot this month and raised his average from .170 near the end of April to .235.
    ~John

  2. #2
    Released Outright NyMike's Avatar
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    The Claussen update definitely seems encouraging. Hopefully, he keeps up the progress.

  3. #3
    NYYF MVP


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    I wouldn't get too encouraged. George is getting pissed and if there is a trade Claussen could be bait. It seems like they are moving him up so damn quick. He is scheduled to pitch for AAA Columbus in his next start.

  4. #4
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    Originally posted by 23jordan
    I wouldn't get too encouraged. George is getting pissed and if there is a trade Claussen could be bait. It seems like they are moving him up so damn quick. He is scheduled to pitch for AAA Columbus in his next start.
    He pitched last night and had a pretty good start.

    4IP/3H/1R/1ER/4BB/4K - no decision. I'm not sure why it was so short. They might have had him on a strict pitch count and the 4BB/4K's indicates he was throwing a lot of pitches.

    I don't think they'll panic and look to trade him, although I think they definitely want to know where he is before the trade deadline (i.e., if they think he's coming back all the way then they don't trade him, if they don't think so, maybe they do trade him). I don't think they are moving him up that fast. His time in Tampa was to work on his mechanics and to let him pitch where it's warm to protect his arm.

    Personally, I think that he will come back all the way. He's our best pitching prospect and I suspect he'll be in the rotation next season. If George should be annoyed by anything it's the big payroll this year and the lack of production. If anything this shows how important players like Claussen are to the team. They need some guys making the minimum in order to have the money to fill some critical holes over the next couple of years. Johnson, Claussen, Rivera and potentially others will give us a lot of money to use to sign the people we need over the next couple of years.

  5. #5
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    They will not move Claussen. A hard throwing lefty, and young, is an untouchable. Especially this far along in his development.

  6. #6
    Originally posted by koko
    They will not move Claussen. A hard throwing lefty, and young, is an untouchable. Especially this far along in his development.
    Agreed. Claussen has a shot at the rotation as early as next season. You just don't trade away good young pitching, especially a left-hander.
    ~John

  7. #7
    Be Smart! Buzah!'s Avatar
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    A fully recovered Claussen

    will occasionally remind us of the Gator.

  8. #8

    Re: A fully recovered Claussen

    Originally posted by Buzah!
    will occasionally remind us of the Gator.
    There were trade rumors involving Guidry before he established himself. I think even George has learned that you don't trade your best pitching prospects, unless you are getting a stud pitcher who has already done it in the majors, is in his mid-20s, and is 100% healthy. But those trades are very rare.

  9. #9
    NYYF Legend


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    Rich well said,Thats what I'm afraid of here with this slump.I hope we have learned from the past and don't start trading away young lefty starters to supply our bench.

  10. #10
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    Assuming they don't trade any away, the Yankees will have some interesting decisions to make next year on the young pitchers who should be major league ready. Claussen, Graman, Borell, DePaula, and possibly Andy Beal all could be ready next season. Which ones stay and which ones go?

  11. #11
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    Claussen and Graman have the highest up side.De Paula I heard is being groomed for middle relief and will be used IMO as trade bait if needed.Borrel would be next in line.Beal is very interesting in the fact that crafty lefty's always have to prove themselves over and over before getting a shot.Beal has hit some bumps I hear after his promotion.Don't forget the guy with the most up side,thats Henn.If he has a good showing In Penn this summer they may just shoot him right up the line.

  12. #12
    NYYF MVP


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    Originally posted by Yankyfan
    Claussen and Graman have the highest up side.De Paula I heard is being groomed for middle relief and will be used IMO as trade bait if needed.Borrel would be next in line.Beal is very interesting in the fact that crafty lefty's always have to prove themselves over and over before getting a shot.Beal has hit some bumps I hear after his promotion.Don't forget the guy with the most up side,thats Henn.If he has a good showing In Penn this summer they may just shoot him right up the line.
    I like Claussen the most and I'm not as high on Graman. I'm probably more fond of Borrell than Graman. Borrell hits 90 with his FB and he really knows how to pitch. It's like he pitches like a typical crafty lefty, but also can throw 90. DePaula looks to be a nice pitcher in the pen, while Beal will have plenty of time to move up the chain. We really do have a bunch of pitchers in the upper levels that will be ready soon.

    Don't forget that both Hernandez and Choate can probably pitch well enough to fill in for a bullpen as well. Colter Bean may have what it takes, but he's not a hard-thrower and will have to keep proving himself, while Jason Anderson is already up and looking like a major league pitcher.

    We may not have many high-level position players, but our pitching is looking quite good right now.

  13. #13
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    The important thing here is we have a Lion share of the hardest thing to come bye in baseball.Good young lefty's.

  14. #14
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    Claussen pitched yesterday for AAA Columbus and went 7 innings giving up 4 hits and no runs while striking out 4 and walking none.

    Looks like he has made a full recovery, hopefully we dont deal him for relief pitching cause i got a good feeling about this guy.

  15. #15
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    lets be conservative next year

    the way claussen is pitching , he should surely be our no. 5 man on rotation . if lieber rehabs well, which he should , our rotation next year should be -
    moose
    contreras
    weaver
    lieber
    claussen
    no need of signing an expensive free agent . i believe this rotation has the potential

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