With CC Sabathia and Andy Pettitte on the DL and David Phelps still getting stretched out in the minors, 24 year-old righty Adam Warren will be making his major league debut tonight against the White Sox. Drafted in the 4th round as a senior from baseball powerhouse UNC, Warren has steadily progressed through the Yankee farm system, and has earned his shot in the bigs. Below are his minor league statistics
Overall the statistics are pretty strong, though they do show some worrisome trends. As we can see, Warren has demonstrated good control throughout his minor league career, with 2011 the only season in which he has walked more than 3 batters per 9 innings. However, the walk rate has gradually climbed as Warren has moved up the latter. Warren’s strikeout rate has also dropped, sitting in the 8-9 per 9 range at the lower levels, and dropping to just over 6 this season. Warren has also gone from being a groundball pitcher (2-3 GO:AO over his first 2 seasons) to a more even split.
Despite these statistical regressions, Warren still continues to be an effective pitcher. His fastball is his bread and butter, sitting in the low-90′s and touching 95-96 on occasion. He has great command of the pitch, which has served him well throughout the minors. His best secondary offering is his slider, which is his best strikeout weapon, though he also has an adequate curveball and changeup to keep hitters guessing. It’s not exactly a dynamite repertoire, but when his fastball command is on, he can be very effective.
It is difficult to know what to expect tonight from Warren, given that he will be making his major league debut. However, his maturity and poise could help him avoid the inevitable jitters that a rookie pitcher will face. Hopefully he will just focus on keeping his fastball down and on the corners, and build confidence by getting ahead in the count. I’m not expecting miracles, but am just hoping he will be able to keep the Yankees in the game. I think he will be able to do at least that.
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