Brackman To The Bullpen?Posted: June 15, 2011
At some point last week, I made the point that the Yankees should not rush Manny Banuelos and Dellin Betances to the Majors and into their bullpen to give them a better chance of winning this season. However, I didn’t talk about the other Killer B, Andrew Brackman, who is struggling mightily down in Triple A Scranton.
After a break-out 2010 in which he finally seemed to get control over his pitches, Brackman has regressed back to his former self walking more than he’s striking out. I wouldn’t have a problem with this, but he is already 25 and this was the year he was supposed to make it to the show and start to prove that he could be a big league starter. This dream seems to be long gone, but while looking at his game log, I found something interesting.
First of all, I saw that Scranton had skipped Brackman in the rotation, which I found somewhat normal since he is pitching the worst out of the five starters. But then, when David Phelps was scratched from his start this weekend, they plugged in George Kontos and then brought Brackman in for relief where he did not impress giving up two runs on three hits and two walks in 1.1 innings.
It seems that they are starting a little bit of an experiment with the former first round draft pick. He is pretty old for a prospect and since he has good stuff and the big league club sure could use another are in the pen, why not make him a reliever? Maybe not having to pace himself will help him figure it out.
Even though Brackman’s first outing out of the bullpen didn’t go too well, they should keep trying. But the one thing that he needs to do if he wants to become a successful reliever is to find a way to get his walk rate down because the worst thing is bringing in a pitcher from the bullpen who can’t throw strikes.