I don’t want to make too much of this, but Brian Cashman was reported to be in attendance for Andrew Brackman’s start last night for the Trenton Thunder. The fact that Brian Cashman was in attendance to watch Brackman pitch doesn’t mean he’s getting called up anytime soon, but it does raise an eyebrow. There could be any number of reasons to make the trip, including evaluating him for possible trade considerations, but the fact that he’s now on Brian’s radar tells me he’s in the mix. I remember a similar trip where Brian brought along Reggie to watch Joba pitch in 07, and we all know what happened then. Heading into this season, I thought Andrew was a possibility for the MLB bullpen for a number of reasons. Here’s a rundown:
-As with 07 Joba, he would be approaching his innings limits in August, so a bullpen move would be a way to get him some MLB experience while keeping his innings down.
-After a slow start he’s had a breakout season so far, most impressively keeping his walks down.
-He was good last year out of the bullpen in what was an otherwise horrendous season.
-He’s old (24) for his level (AA) and he could be a fast mover once he puts it together.
-He’s throwing around 96 MPH, and could even add a few ticks in the pen.
-He’s already on the 40 man roster, so you don’t need to make a roster move.
-It’s an internal option, which is generally preferable to making a trade.
Looking at the recent Yankee trade rumors, there doesn’t appear to be anything exciting on the horizon to supplement the Yankee bullpen this year via trade. Also, relievers are so inconsistent and there’s often a learning curve in how to use them, so mid-season pickups are fraught with pitfalls. It’s simply preferable to go with internal options. No doubt there will be other farmhands ahead of Brackman on the depth chart, with Mark Melancon, Jon Albaladejo and Romulo Sanchez all in line to get the call once the Yanks finally release Chan Ho Park and/or Chad Gaudin. But none of those pitchers have Brackman’s upside. It’s time to start keeping an eye on Andrew Brackman, this could get interesting.