Expectations are high for New York Yankees prospect James Kaprielian but he just proved he’s ready to take all the pressures on in the Bronx.Many players dominate in their first appearance and eventually get demoted. For 23-year-old New York Yankees prospect James Kaprielian, all of that happened in one day.
However, that will not and should not deter Yankees fans from his bright future with the Yankees. For him, all it took was two innings of scoreless ball to show that the youngster will likely be making his way to the Bronx as early as this season.
While it is only one appearance, the velocity and pitch selection we got to see from him showed just how ready he is to compete on the biggest stage in baseball.
I can hear the skeptics already. “It’s only spring training,” they say. Yeah, it is. But did you take a chance to look closely at Kaprielian’s performance against the Toronto Blue Jays?
His two-inning performance came in the seventh and eighth innings. The game was tied at the time and Kap kept the Jays hitless while facing the minimum six batters. Kap struck out three, two of them looking. One of those strikeouts looking was against former Yankee and starting Blue Jays catcher Russell Martin.
While he allowed one walk, he quickly erased it by forcing Steve Pearce to ground into a double play. In addition, Kap also cranked it up to 96 on the radar gun; a promising sign for a pitcher who has only seen action thus far in Single-A Tampa.
From what we’ve seen so far from Kaprielian off the field, he is a fierce competitor who craves the taste of victory in the Major Leagues. Showing what he did today on the mound, there’s no doubt that he’ll live up to his potential as an ace soon enough.
Kaprielian likely would be up in the majors if it wasn’t for an elbow injury that set him back last season. Regardless, he already made an impact with his 2-1 record and 1.50 ERA. Thursday’s victory was a giant step forward into proving that he is ready to make that jump.
MLB Pipeline’s No. 58 prospect has only pitched in simulated games so far this spring but getting the opportunity to succeed against the Blue Jays gave them exactly what they needed to.
Kaprielian’s slider was sharp and his fastball sat at 95-96 mph. He threw only 26 pitches to get through six batters.
Economical and methodical, Kaprielian looked like a gritty veteran on the mound, not a kid getting his first taste of playing in a Yankees uniform.
Kaprielian has worked incredibly hard this offseason for a shot to show off what he’s got, only to get stymied at every turn. Well, the caged bull has been released and there is no way the Yankees will be able to ignore the damage he’s done to opponents on the mound.
Slow down, let him develop, let him work his way up. That’s what everyone is thinking. However, if Thursday was any indication, he’s ready. In fact, he might be even more ready than some players who have been on the team for a few years.
With a guy throwing 96 in Single-A ball, you have to bring him up sooner or later. He’ll be ready to do whatever he can to get there.
Solid win today with the boys and lots of room for growth.
— James Kaprielian (@JamesKaprielian) March 17, 2017
The Bronx may be frozen over right now, but Kaprielian and his fastball are red-hot. It’s a good thing he’s already shown he can handle the heat because he’ll be thrown into the fire very soon, hoping to exceed all expectations.