YMLN - Bleich Shines In Live Batting Practice

Jeremy Bleich looked good on Saturday

TAMPA, FL - The Yankees prospects continued their Spring Training workouts at the minor league complex Saturday and the pitchers took their first step towards getting ready by facing live batters for the first time this year, including last year's supplemental first round pick Jeremy Bleich.

  • Jeremy Bleich, working out with the Charleston team this Spring, appeared to already be in mid-season form in his first live batting practice session. He was throwing strike after strike, showing good zip with his fastball and excellent break with his curveball. His command was uncanny considering it is so early in camp.

  • On the other side of the spectrum, Dellin Betances had a hard time finding consistent command of his pitches on the opposing field. He was snapping off some incredible looking curveballs, but threw quite a few pitches in the dirt and some way inside. The stuff looked great, but the command was more on-par with what would be expected for the very first Spring outing.

  • Like Betances, Arodys Vizcaino was showing some great stuff overall but the consistent command was lacking. His fastball was very hard for the first outing and it appeared even quicker than last season, and his curveball was wicked. He beaned Jose Pirela in the back in his first at-bat and the other right-handed batters noticeably took a step further out of the batter's box when they stepped in for their plate appearances. Prior to Saturday's live BP he was listed as one of the most impressive pitchers in camp.

  • Brett Marshall, like Bleich, was one of the more impressive hurlers on Saturday. His command wasn't quite as consistent, but it was pretty close. His curveball has appeared to have gotten a lot better since last season and he was overpowering batters, including Garrison Lassiter who swung aimlessly at a curveball before having gas thrown right by him.

  • D.J. Mitchell wasn't nearly the same pitcher on Saturday that he was during Instructional League camps this past offseason. He did break Mitchell Delaney's bat with a power sinker, but he was all over the place with his command - some pitches went a foot or two over the strike zone. His curveball, which was one of his newer pitches last year, still had great break to it. The stuff was there, but the command isn't just yet.

  • Pat Venditte, pitching exclusively from the right-side on Saturday, looked quite impressive. None of the batters he faced got a good hack and he was showing a good inside-the-zone, swing-and-miss curveball - which is exactly what he'll need to do consistently in A-ball and beyond. His live BP was a great success.

  • Garrett Patterson fell into the Mitchell category on Saturday as a pitcher who showed great stuff but the command was inconsistent. His fastball-slider combination was overpowering, but while the command wasn't quite there yet, the good news is when he missed he missed down in the zone. Overall it was a solid showing considering he hasn't faced batters in over a year.

  • Brandon Laird didn't get an opportunity to swing the bat on Saturday, but he might have had the best offseason conditioning program of any prospect in camp this year. He has reported twenty pounds lighter than last season and he looks lean and toned. It's quite noticeable that he has taken his conditioning very seriously.

  • He didn't pitch on Saturday but Grant Duff is one of the few names that has quickly impressed team officials through the first week of camp. Reports are his fastball-slider combination has moved up a level from last season and many are encouraged about what he can do this coming season.

  • Duff isn't the only one impressing, however. Word around camp is Jackson Valera has impressed many with his bat so far this Spring and he certainly looked the part on Saturday. He was lacing line-drives to right-center with regularity and his power seemed effortless. It's early, but considering he seemed like a lock to debut in the Dominican Summer League this season, there are rumblings that it might not be etched in stone with the way he's been swinging the bat so far.

    Here are the current workgroups. They are sure to change after the prospects in big league camp move over to the minor league side:

    Scranton

    Pitchers: Wilkins Arias, Nick Asselin, Ryan Flannery, Josh Schmidt, Jose Valdez, Eric Wordekemper, Grant Duff, Craig Heyer, Alan Horne, Brett Smith, Jason Stephens, Chase Vacek, Mike Gardner, and Kevin Whelan.

    Catchers: Ben Blumenthal, Neall French, Jose Gil, and Joseph Muich.

    Infielders: Eric Duncan, Walter Ibarra, Emerson Landoni, Christopher Malec, Carlos Mendoza, Luis Nunez, Jimmy Paredes, and Braedyn Pruitt.

    Outfielders: Tommy Baldridge, Edwar Gonzalez, Melky Mesa, Andres Perez, and David Williams.

    Trenton

    Pitchers: Casey Erickson, Jacinto Gonell, Jonathan Hovis, Nick Montgomery, Amauri Sanit, Andrew Shive, Michael Solbach, Jesse Hoover, Dan Kapala, Zach McAllister, Hector Noesi, Tim Norton, Phil Bartleski, and Ryan Pope.

    Catchers: Francisco Arcia, Kyle Higashioka, and Jhorge Liccien.

    Infielders: Kelvin Castro, Matt Cusick, Jose Mojica, Kevin Smith, Justin Snyder, Yunior Tabares, and Marcos Vechionacci.

    Outfielders: Tim Battle, James Cooper, Seth Fortenberry, Isaiah Howes, and Carlos Urena.

    Tampa

    Pitchers: Cory Arbiso, Dellin Betances, Luke Greinke, Jairo Heredia, Ronny Marte, Jonathan Ortiz, Garrett Patterson, Noel Castillo, Adam Olbrychowski, Paul David Patterson, Lance Pendleton, Kelvin Perez, Brad Rulon, and Ryan Zink.

    Catchers: Ryan Baker, Eric Fryer, and Steven Strasbaugh.

    Infielders: Chad Gross, Mitch Hilligoss, Corban Joseph, Brandon Laird, Addison Maruszak, Damon Sublett, and Bradley Suttle.

    Outfielders: Taylor Grote, Austin Krum, Wady Rufino, Jack Rye, and Eduardo Sosa.

    Charleston

    Pitchers: Jeremy Bleich, Brett Marshall, D.J. Mitchell, Clint Preisendorfer, Pat Venditte, Arodys Vizcaino, Manny Banuelos, Brandon Braboy, Mikey O'Brien, David Phelps, Matt Richardson, Nik Turley, and Andrew Brackman.

    Catchers: Mitch Abeita, Brian Baisley, Jackson Valera, and Chase Weems.

    Infielders: David Adams, Carmen Angelini, Mitch Delaney, Garrison Lassiter, Guy Lucian, Mike Lyon, Jose Pirela, and Jahdiel Santamaria.

    Outfielders: Abraham Almonte, Dan Brewer, Kelvin De Leon, Ray Kruml, and Chris Smith.

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