There comes a time in every prospect’s career when tantalizing skills and impressive physical measurements aren’t enough to convince people the major leagues are in sight.
Such is the case in 2019 for righthander Domingo Acevedo who turns 25 in early March and has been in the Yankees’ system since signing in October 2012 out of the Dominican Republic.
Armed with a fastball that ranges from 94-98 mph, the 6-foot-7, 250-pound Acevedo also commands a slider that has improved and a tantalizing changeup.
Now, after spending most of the past two seasons at Double-A Trenton, it is time for Acevedo to earn a spot on Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and pitch well enough to be considered for the big league staff when a need surfaces.
“This year is important for him,’’ minor league pitching coordinator Danny Borrell said of Acevedo, who has battled blisters on the index and ring fingers of his pitching hand. “He is a great kid who will come to spring training and work his butt off.’’
Limited to 64.2 innings in the Eastern League in 2018, Acevedo recorded a 2.92 ERA with 52 strikeouts, 20 walks and three home runs allowed.
Acevedo got a very small taste of the big leagues on July 21, when the Yankees called him up to serve as insurance in case they needed a long reliever. When he wasn’t needed, he was optioned to Trenton on the same day.
Despite working as a starter his entire pro career, Acevedo’s future could be in the bullpen.
“What is best for his health,’’ Borrell said of Acevedo’s role “If he stays healthy and has three pitches, and his fastball stays where it is, then he is a starting pitcher. He has two pitches to get major league hitters out, and that is not including his fastball. He is like Chad Green. He can live off his fastball.’’
— When the Yankees traded Carlos Beltran to the Rangers at the 2016 deadline, they acquired righthanders Dillon Tate, Nick Green and Erik Swanson. All three prospects are with different organizations today after the Diamondbacks selected Green in the major league phase of Rule 5 draft.
The Yankees traded Tate to the Orioles in the deal that landed Zach Britton in late July and then used Swanson to help acquire James Paxton from the Mariners in November.