Dellin Betances isn’t going to see much action with the Yankees over the final couple weeks of the regular season. And when he is called on to pitch it will likely be in low-pressure relief situations. But he was officially promoted to the major leagues on Saturday and is ecstatic to be wearing pinstripes.
The 23-year-old right-hander told Chad Jennings of The Journal News this afternoon that he shared a 10-minute game of catch with his older brother in front of their New Jersey childhood home when he first got word that he was being promoted.
“Just 10 minutes,” Dellin said. “Just regular catch, and then he squatted down for a little flat ground. After that, just showered and got ready to come here. … I grew up in New York. Born in New York and raised, and being a Yankee fan to now coming here and wearing the uniform is a great, great feeling. … When they called my name I didn’t believe it, and I still can’t believe I’m here. Maybe when I go out on the field it will hit me.”
The 6-foot-8 Betances posted a 3.70 ERA and struck out 142 batters in 126 1/3 innings this season between Double-A and Triple-A. Baseball America ranked him 43rd in their Top 100 prospect rankings last winter.
Free agent right-hander Tim Lincecum isn’t ready to hang up his cleats just yet. At least, that’s the word from Lincecum’s agent, Rick Thurman, who says the 32-year-old is still “throwing and getting ready for the season” (via Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News).
Lincecum may not be ready to enter retirement, but another quote from Thurman suggests that he’ll be picky about where he pitches next. He doesn’t appear open to pitching overseas, and despite not having a contract for 2017 (or even any serious suitors), the right-hander is set on pitching in the big leagues this year. Whether or not he’s willing to take a bullpen role to do so remains to be seen.
While Baggarly predicts some interest in the veteran righty, there’s not much in Lincecum’s recent history to inspire faith in him as a starter, or even a reliever. He picked up a one-year, $2.5 million contract with the Angels following his hip surgery in 2015, and went 2-6 in 2016 with a 9.16 ERA, 5.4 BB/9 and 7.5 SO/9 over 38 1/3 innings. At this point, a minor league contract seems like the surest path back to major league success, though he’s unlikely to find an open spot on the Giants’ or Angels’ rosters anytime soon.
Free agent right-hander Jeff Manship has reportedly signed with the NC Dinos of the Korea Baseball Organization, according to FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman. The righty was non-tendered by the Indians in December.
Manship, 32, completed his second season with Cleveland in 2016. He delivered a 3.12 ERA, 4.6 BB/9 and 7.5 SO/9 rate over 43 1/3 innings, a slight decline after posting an 0.92 ERA with the club the year before. During eight years in the major leagues, Manship carries a 4.82 career ERA, 3.6 BB/9 and 6.4 SO/9 in multiple stints with the Twins, Rockies, Phillies and Indians.
The right-hander will be joined by fellow MLB transplants Eric Hacker and Xavier Scruggs, each of whom took one-year deals with the Dinos last month. Steve Adams of MLB Trade Rumors notes that each KBO team is allowed up to three foreign players, so Manship will round out the trio when he joins the roster. Any salary terms have yet to be disclosed.