From Bryan Hoch:
Jorge Posada caught Melancon during his batting practice session Sunday at George M. Steinbrenner Field, offering rave reviews. Jeter may have crowed when Cano splintered his lumber, but Jeter also cut and missed at two pitches from Melancon, grinning widely after the second one made him look silly.”His ball cuts, it sinks, it’s got late life to it,” Girardi said. “That usually translates into swings and misses, and not solid contact.”
Posada said that Melancon’s two-seamer was even more impressive than his 12-to-6 curveball, widely regarded as his strikeout pitch. Posada said that Melancon’s two-seamer cut to lefties — the reason Cano’s bat was taken out of service — and that the four-seamer was the one that prompted Jeter to flash his pearly whites.
Viewing the Yankees’ bullpen mix, Posada does not seem to expect Melancon will be on the first-base line April 6 at Baltimore. But it seems safe to wager that he’ll have his share of Opening Days if everything continues on this track, projecting as a late-inning reliever or closer type.
“We’ll see how he progresses,” Posada said. “I think they don’t really want to rush him right now. They want him to get a full year in and see what happens. But he’s got a bright future. There’s no doubt about that.”
If Edwar Ramirez’s shoulder injury turns out to be a serious one, I wouldn’t be too surprised to see Melancon pitching in his place. Frankly, based on what the Yankees saw in camp today, if that were to occur, I don’t think any of them would be too surprised, either.
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