This afternoon the New York Yankees promoted right-handed pitching prospect Giovanny Gallegos to the major league roster. He has a very impressive track record and should be helpful for the bullpen. Let’s take a look.
The Yankees signed Gallegos as a free agent from Mexico in 2011. Initially a starting pitcher, he threw strikes but was a mediocre performer overall. That changed in 2015 when he converted to relief full-time and suddenly became unhittable, posting a 1.71 ERA with a 64/9 K/BB in 63 innings at three levels, allowing just a .184 average against. He was even better in 2016, posting a ridiculous 106/17 K/BB in 78 innings in the high minors.
Gallegos ranked 19th with a Grade C+ on the pre-season New York Yankees Top 20 prospects list for 2017 with the following commentary:
19) Giovanny Gallegos, RHP, Grade C+: Age 25, from Mexico; Yankees have many bullpen options ready for the majors and Gallegos has received less attention than most, however that should change this spring; added to 40-man roster after posting 1.27 ERA in 78 innings in Double-A/Triple-A with 106/17 K/BB, just 48 hits allowed; Tommy John survivor, fastball has crept up to 94, already has good mixture of off-speed pitches, throws strikes; while some of the "other Grade C+ guys" listed have higher ultimate ceilings, Gallegos is ready now and I wanted to highlight him. ETA 2017.
He’s been a touch more human this year in Triple-A with a 3.86 ERA in 14 innings for Scranton, although his K/BB and K/IP ratios remain excellent: 26 strikeouts against six walks.
Gallegos is listed at 6-2, 210, born August 14, 1991. A soft-tosser as a starter, his fastball has steadily picked up in the bullpen and is now 93-95 MPH. He has an impressive curveball that he likes to use, to the point that he sometimes falls in love with it, but he’s highly aggressive about throwing strikes and has taken very well to the bullpen role.
As middle/long relievers go, I like Gallegos a lot.