A few days after trade conversation between Minnesota and Atlanta regarding Jaime Garcia became public, the two clubs reached a deal that sent Garcia and Catasauqua High School graduate, C Anthony Recker, to the Twins in exchange for 19-year-old Dominican righty, Huascar Ynoa.
- LHP Jaime Garcia
- C Anthony Recker
- Cash Considerations
- RHP Huascar Ynoa
Ynoa ranked 22nd on the Twins list over the offseason. I saw him last fall during instructional league, during which he sat 89-94 with a sinking fastball while flashing an above-average curveball. This year, Ynoa’s arm slot has been raised a bit and he’s throwing harder, sitting more comfortably in the 90s and touching 95 or 96. A person from an org not involved with the deal told me they had Ynoa averaging close to 94 mph with his fastball during a start with Elizabethton this year.
Ynoa has displayed some feel for creating movement on his changeup, as well, though at times he shows clear arm deceleration. The curveball is much more likely to drive Ynoa’s ascent through the minor leagues, but I like his chances of developing a viable cambio. I also saw what looked like some bad, low-80s sliders last fall, though they might have just been curveballs Ynoa couldn’t get on top of, something pitchers with lower arm slots often struggle to do.
While an inherently risky prospect because of his proximity to the majors (Ynoa had made a half-dozen Appalachian League starts before the trade, and is still a 40 FV for me based on his distance from the majors), he has the makings of two above-average pitches, an average third, and enough strike-throwing ability to remain a starter. He’s not one of the sexier prospects in a loaded Braves farm system but a nice, low-level flier with a chance to max out as a league-average starter.
Eric Longenhagen is from Catasauqua, PA and currently lives in Tempe, AZ. He spent four years working for the Phillies Triple-A affiliate, two with Baseball Info Solutions and two contributing to prospect coverage at ESPN.com. Previous work can also be found at Sports On Earth, CrashburnAlley and Prospect Insider.