Starting off his professional career with the Staten Island Yankees, Garrison was assigned the role of a late relief pitcher since his debut.
He finished his college career at Fresno State in California as a late relief guy, with 52 strikeouts in 42.1 innings pitched, and Staten Island Yankees coaching staff thought he would be the best prospect for the job in New York.
"He was a closer in college, so he was throwing strikes and getting people out, we thought he was the best candidate for it," Staten Island Yankees pitching coach Carlos Chantres said.
Justin Pope, Staten Island Yankees Manager, acknowledges the importance of striking hitters out, especially in those last couple of innings, and says that in that respect, Garrison is on top of his game.
"That's the key, throwing strikes; especially in the 9th inning," Pope explained. "The last three outs of the game are the hardest three outs to get.
"He's been doing good, real good. We feel confident every time we give him the ball and he goes out there. We know what we are going to get out of him. He's a competitor and going to give his best, and that is all we can ask for."
So far in the 18 games he's pitched with the Staten Island Yankees, Garrison has struck out 18 hitters in 19.1 innings, earning an ERA of 3.26. Although his fastball is his best pitch, his performance on the mound is credited to a variety of quality pitches.
"He's got a fastball, curveball, slider, [and] change. I think his fastball is probably his best pitch right now. And then the next pitch would be his slider," Chantres said. "We have been starting to work on some delivery stuff with him. And he has been starting to look a lot better."
Garrison claims that his focus is on maintaining a solid command over all of his pitches, although his fastball command is the most important while on the mound.
"Fastball command is the biggest thing out here," Garrison stated. "So I have to have good fastball command to have success out here, but also, the command of my secondary pitches, you know, sliders, curveballs, change-ups, [they] have also helped me out here."
Coming out of college, Garrison claims that the toughest thing about playing pro ball is the expectation of pitchers to know their hitters swings, and what pitches to hit them with.
"Coming from a college level of play, it's definitely all the outside stuff, as far as pitch counting and reading hitters' swings," Garrison said of what he'd like to improve.
"In college everything is called for you; all the pitches are called for you; you don't have to do anything but focus on making the pitch. But here you have to do it all."
Chantres believes that Garrison is making the adjustment just fine, and perhaps is doing a better job of it than he gives himself credit.
"There's always going to be an adjustment and these guys are always going to be learning no matter where they are at," Chantres said. "But he has done a good job. He's going after these hitters and we have meetings to talk about these hitters every day.
"He is following the plan," he assured.
Garrison Following The Plan
Pinstripes Plus Top Stories
Top Five Most Underrated ProspectsThe Yankees clearly have not only one of the best farm systems in all of baseball but one of the deepest too. While there are many positives with that impressive depth, it has…
Pinstripes PlusYesterday at 4:57 AM
Scouting Yankees Prospect #33: Tito PoloThe Yankees acquired outfielder Tito Polo from the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2016 in the Ivan Nova deal. Originally signed out of Colombia back in 2012, he has steadily improved to…
Pinstripes PlusThursday at 4:54 AM
Scouting Yankees Prospect #34: Luis CedenoThe Yankees signed right-handed pitcher Luis Cedeno out of Venezuela back in 2012. An older International free agent signing at the time, he was noted more for his advanced level…
Pinstripes PlusWednesday at 4:58 AM
Scouting Yankees Prospect #35: Erik SwansonThe Yankees acquired right-handed pitcher Erik Swanson from the Texas Rangers in the Carlos Beltran-Dillon Tate trade in July of 2016. Originally drafted in the 8th round of the…
Pinstripes PlusTuesday at 4:55 AM