Staten Island Progress Report II

Keeping our readers up to speed on the prospects, one of our Staten Island beat writers gives his progress report to date on Jonathan Poterson, Luke Trubee, Paul David Patterson, and Brian Baisley through Sunday's contest in part two of the Staten Island Progress Report.

(FREE PREVIEW OF PREMIUM CONTENT)

Jonathan Poterson

On June 22nd, Poterson, after having been sent down from Charleston, was batting .200 in Staten Island, but in an interview with PinstripesPlus, he said that he remained optimistic. Unfortunately for him, that average was his season-high and in the last month he's seen it nose-dive to a dismal .077 with just one run batted in.

"It's baseball," he said, clearly disappointed but unperturbed. "That's the way the game goes sometimes. I'm still working hard and hopefully I'll climb out of it soon."

After receiving playing time in late June, Poterson has been used sparingly, starting just eight of his team's last 28 games as the other outfielders have out-produced him.

Last season, though his batting average was below where he would've liked (.225) he was productive, driving in a combined 65 runs for the Yankees and Riverdogs. Those numbers now seem incredible, given the trials he's endured this season.

Asked about the possible reasons for his struggles, Poterson refuted the notion of his slump being caused by injury or flawed mechanics.

"I think it's more within," he said. "I got away from what I did last year. I haven't been playing too much and I have been thinking too much."

For a first round pick blessed with immense talent, the expectations are even loftier than the signing bonus. Those factors can either motivate or bring about a feeling of contentment.

"There's no complacency, ever," said Poterson. "I always have a drive to do better because you've never arrived. I don't care if you're a Hall of Famer, you haven't arrived and it can always be better."

In terms of tangible results, he has regressed since 2005 and what he's improved on thus far has yet to translate onto the field. Still, the 20-year-old is able to extract some positive from an overall negative experience.

He says that he's learned patience, both at the plate and in general, as he's had to cope with a lack of playing time and onlookers questioning his ability.

"Also, understanding the game and how it goes," he said. "Not carrying at-bats into other at-bats and remaining mentally tough."

"You obviously always want to have better numbers," he said, when asked what he'd like to gain in the remaining 29 games of this season. "But I want to keep a positive attitude and come out in every game and [win], no matter what my numbers look like."

Luke Trubee

Trubee, the Yankees pick in the 33rd round, is having the best season of his career, despite being used in a role he's not as accustomed to.

The 6-foot-3 right hander, who pitched to a 3.71 ERA at the University of Dayton, mostly as a starter, now has a 1.40 earned run average and a 0.94 WHIP as a reliever for the Baby Bombers.

"I guess it's just hard work," he said of his success. "Every day, getting out here and working hard. Being mentally prepared every day."

He made 19 appearances out of the bullpen in college, but has assumed the role of full-time setup man and is adjusting well.,r>
"It's been pretty good, he said. "I don't think it's been too tough so far. Earlier in my career, I did a little of both so I guess the transition wasn't as hard for me as it would be for some guys."

He said that one of the differences between being a reliever and a starter is that he doesn't have to pace himself as much and can afford to attack batters the best he can.

"I like that part of it," he said. "I can pretty much go all out because I'm only in there for an inning or two each night."

Trubee features a fastball that he said tops out at 90 to 91 miles-per-hour, a slider and a changeup. His arsenal used to include a curveball, but he scrapped it earlier this summer and has switched to the slider.

"[The curveball] was my third best pitch and it wasn't as good as I'd like it to be," he explained.

He said that he and the coaching staff wanted to develop a pitch to compliment the changeup, his best pitch, and the slider was the one that he found most effective.

"For the rest of the year, I want to get better at throwing the slider and get that up to par," he said. "I like where I'm at right now with stuff, but the slider needs work. If I can get that to where it can be, I'll be alright."

Paul David Patterson

Patterson is 2-0 this season with a 2.70 ERA and has had success in different roles, having started a game and recorded a save.

The 22-year-old, who was almost exclusively a starter at the University of Northern Kentucky, has taken well to being a member of the bullpen.

"It's a little bit of a different mindset because you get more time to get ready as a starter," he said. "As a reliever, you have to be more rapid about getting ready. But as long as I'm pitching, I'm happy."

He throws a fastball, changeup and an occasional curveball. Patterson, who isn‘t overpowering and has only recorded 12 strikeouts this season, said that he relies on changing speeds and locating his pitches to get batters out.

"The main thing is to get that first pitch strike then keep them off balance," he explained. "[I] throw a lot of changeups to get them out in front and force a lot of ground balls. That‘s the idea."

Asked about whether he feels his height is beneficial or if it sometimes makes having consistent mechanics difficult, the 6-foot-8 hurler, whom his teammates have nicknamed "Big Country," said that he feels it's to his advantage.

"I think it helps me. As long as I can stay tall and keep my arm up and make sure the ball is coming in on a downward plane, it works to my advantage," said the pitcher, who throws from a three-quarter arm angle.

Patterson also tries to avoid overthrowing his fastball. "The harder you try to throw it," he said, "usually you tense up." He believes that a pitcher is able to get the best results when he is more free in his motion and isn't worried about velocity.

He said that in just a month at Staten Island, he has already improved his mechanics and credits pitching coach Carlos Chantres.

"I've gotten better at staying back and loading up on my back leg," he said. "Carlos has done an excellent job with all the pitchers and I feel he's done an excellent job on me."

"I was lunging forward and kind of dragging my arm a little bit and he's got me to stay back, break at the waste and keep my arm up. I'm getting through my pitches a lot better now."

Patterson, who feels comfortable with his progress thus far, said that he must develop more consistency and that's his goal for the rest of the season.

"My pitches are coming along pretty well," he said. "My fastball and change have been good and my curve has been good in some spots. So I have to keep working hard and try to improve on everything."

Though he seems content as a relief pitcher, Patterson still considers himself a starter and wouldn't rule out a possible return to a starting rotation, if his team needed him in that capacity.

"I've always been a starter and now that I'm a reliever, I like them both," he said. "But really, I like just being on the mound. So whenever the [manager] sees fit for me to get in there, then I'm happy. As long as I'm pitching."

Brian Baisley

When Baisley first sat with PinstripesPlus on July 1st, he was hitting .000 (0-for-11) on the season. He had handled the pitching staff well and was stellar behind the plate, but his offensive numbers were sub-par.

Baisley, at the time, admitted that he was putting pressure on himself to snap the streak. He said that patience would be the key for him going forward, and in the next game, he had three hits.

The self-described "notorious slow starter" has raised his level of play in July like the mercury in a thermometer. He hit .429 with a .667 slugging percentage for the month and is now batting .290 for the season.

He credits hitting coach Ty Hawkins for helping him break out of the slump.

"We worked on some mechanical things in the cage," he said. "But nothing really big. Pretty much, I think it was just that some balls started falling in. The law of averages."

His offense has picked up and he continues to excel defensively, but he hasn't gotten as much playing time as he would have expected. Gaylen Pitts has a rotation of catchers including him, Francisco Cervelli and Jose Gil.

Cervelli, the best hitter of the trio, has started 19 games and is batting .306 while Gil, the defensive specialist has played in 16. Baisley, stuck in the middle, has started just 9 contests.

Asked about his platoon at the position, Pitts said that there isn't a set rotation.

"I do it based on gut feelings, mostly. I watch them and I see who is doing what well and I have an idea of who I want to start that particular game. It's not based on matchups or anything, just instincts and having a feel."

Baisley said that he isn't concerned about playing time and remains focused on what he needs to do.

"I've got to keep doing my job when I go out there," he said. "The pitchers have all been great so I try to call a good game and let them do their thing and make sure I don't mess anything up for them."

"As for the hitting, I hope to keep it up. I want to keep making solid contact and driving the ball up the middle."

A consummate team player, he said that more than anything, what he would like is for this season to yield is another New York-Penn League championship for the Yankees.

_____________________________________________________

Subscribe to PinstripesPlus.com today! Only $79.95 brings you one full year of Total Access Pass and all premium content on PinstripesPlus.com, Scout™ Player and Roster Database (including the 'Hot News' at the top of the site), Breaking News and Information, Total Access to all Scout.com Websites, and Player Pages, detailing the progress and careers of players from high school, the minors, and the pro ranks.

Sample the PinstripesPlus.com Total Access Pass™ at no risk for 7 days, then pay only $7.95 or $21.95. If you want to save 2 months off the monthly subscription price, simply choose the annual PinstripesPlus.com Total Access Pass™ at $79.95.

Pinstripes Plus Top Stories

\r\n \r\n\r\n(FREE PREVIEW OF PREMIUM CONTENT)
\r\n
\r\nJonathan Poterson
\r\n
\r\nOn June 22nd, Poterson, after having been sent down from Charleston, was batting .200 in Staten Island, but in an interview with PinstripesPlus, he said that he remained optimistic. Unfortunately for him, that average was his season-high and in the last month he's seen it nose-dive to a dismal .077 with just one run batted in.
\r\n
\r\n\"It's baseball,\" he said, clearly disappointed but unperturbed. \"That's the way the game goes sometimes. I'm still working hard and hopefully I'll climb out of it soon.\"
\r\n
\r\nAfter receiving playing time in late June, Poterson has been used sparingly, starting just eight of his team's last 28 games as the other outfielders have out-produced him.
\r\n
\r\nLast season, though his batting average was below where he would've liked (.225) he was productive, driving in a combined 65 runs for the Yankees and Riverdogs. Those numbers now seem incredible, given the trials he's endured this season.
\r\n
\r\nAsked about the possible reasons for his struggles, Poterson refuted the notion of his slump being caused by injury or flawed mechanics.
\r\n
\r\n\"I think it's more within,\" he said. \"I got away from what I did last year. I haven't been playing too much and I have been thinking too much.\"
\r\n
\r\nFor a first round pick blessed with immense talent, the expectations are even loftier than the signing bonus. Those factors can either motivate or bring about a feeling of contentment.
\r\n
\r\n\"There's no complacency, ever,\" said Poterson. \"I always have a drive to do better because you've never arrived. I don't care if you're a Hall of Famer, you haven't arrived and it can always be better.\"
\r\n
\r\nIn terms of tangible results, he has regressed since 2005 and what he's improved on thus far has yet to translate onto the field. Still, the 20-year-old is able to extract some positive from an overall negative experience.
\r\n
\r\nHe says that he's learned patience, both at the plate and in general, as he's had to cope with a lack of playing time and onlookers questioning his ability.
\r\n
\r\n\"Also, understanding the game and how it goes,\" he said. \"Not carrying at-bats into other at-bats and remaining mentally tough.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"You obviously always want to have better numbers,\" he said, when asked what he'd like to gain in the remaining 29 games of this season. \"But I want to keep a positive attitude and come out in every game and [win], no matter what my numbers look like.\"
\r\n
\r\nLuke Trubee
\r\n
\r\nTrubee, the Yankees pick in the 33rd round, is having the best season of his career, despite being used in a role he's not as accustomed to.
\r\n
\r\nThe 6-foot-3 right hander, who pitched to a 3.71 ERA at the University of Dayton, mostly as a starter, now has a 1.40 earned run average and a 0.94 WHIP as a reliever for the Baby Bombers.
\r\n
\r\n\"I guess it's just hard work,\" he said of his success. \"Every day, getting out here and working hard. Being mentally prepared every day.\"
\r\n
\r\nHe made 19 appearances out of the bullpen in college, but has assumed the role of full-time setup man and is adjusting well.,r> \r\n
\r\n\"It's been pretty good, he said. \"I don't think it's been too tough so far. Earlier in my career, I did a little of both so I guess the transition wasn't as hard for me as it would be for some guys.\"
\r\n
\r\nHe said that one of the differences between being a reliever and a starter is that he doesn't have to pace himself as much and can afford to attack batters the best he can.
\r\n
\r\n\"I like that part of it,\" he said. \"I can pretty much go all out because I'm only in there for an inning or two each night.\"
\r\n
\r\nTrubee features a fastball that he said tops out at 90 to 91 miles-per-hour, a slider and a changeup. His arsenal used to include a curveball, but he scrapped it earlier this summer and has switched to the slider.
\r\n
\r\n\"[The curveball] was my third best pitch and it wasn't as good as I'd like it to be,\" he explained.
\r\n
\r\nHe said that he and the coaching staff wanted to develop a pitch to compliment the changeup, his best pitch, and the slider was the one that he found most effective.
\r\n
\r\n\"For the rest of the year, I want to get better at throwing the slider and get that up to par,\" he said. \"I like where I'm at right now with stuff, but the slider needs work. If I can get that to where it can be, I'll be alright.\"
\r\n
\r\nPaul David Patterson
\r\n
\r\nPatterson is 2-0 this season with a 2.70 ERA and has had success in different roles, having started a game and recorded a save.
\r\n
\r\nThe 22-year-old, who was almost exclusively a starter at the University of Northern Kentucky, has taken well to being a member of the bullpen.
\r\n
\r\n\"It's a little bit of a different mindset because you get more time to get ready as a starter,\" he said. \"As a reliever, you have to be more rapid about getting ready. But as long as I'm pitching, I'm happy.\"
\r\n
\r\nHe throws a fastball, changeup and an occasional curveball. Patterson, who isn‘t overpowering and has only recorded 12 strikeouts this season, said that he relies on changing speeds and locating his pitches to get batters out.
\r\n
\r\n\"The main thing is to get that first pitch strike then keep them off balance,\" he explained. \"[I] throw a lot of changeups to get them out in front and force a lot of ground balls. That‘s the idea.\"
\r\n
\r\nAsked about whether he feels his height is beneficial or if it sometimes makes having consistent mechanics difficult, the 6-foot-8 hurler, whom his teammates have nicknamed \"Big Country,\" said that he feels it's to his advantage.
\r\n
\r\n\"I think it helps me. As long as I can stay tall and keep my arm up and make sure the ball is coming in on a downward plane, it works to my advantage,\" said the pitcher, who throws from a three-quarter arm angle.
\r\n
\r\nPatterson also tries to avoid overthrowing his fastball. \"The harder you try to throw it,\" he said, \"usually you tense up.\" He believes that a pitcher is able to get the best results when he is more free in his motion and isn't worried about velocity.
\r\n
\r\nHe said that in just a month at Staten Island, he has already improved his mechanics and credits pitching coach Carlos Chantres.
\r\n
\r\n\"I've gotten better at staying back and loading up on my back leg,\" he said. \"Carlos has done an excellent job with all the pitchers and I feel he's done an excellent job on me.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"I was lunging forward and kind of dragging my arm a little bit and he's got me to stay back, break at the waste and keep my arm up. I'm getting through my pitches a lot better now.\"
\r\n
\r\nPatterson, who feels comfortable with his progress thus far, said that he must develop more consistency and that's his goal for the rest of the season.
\r\n
\r\n\"My pitches are coming along pretty well,\" he said. \"My fastball and change have been good and my curve has been good in some spots. So I have to keep working hard and try to improve on everything.\"
\r\n
\r\nThough he seems content as a relief pitcher, Patterson still considers himself a starter and wouldn't rule out a possible return to a starting rotation, if his team needed him in that capacity.
\r\n
\r\n\"I've always been a starter and now that I'm a reliever, I like them both,\" he said. \"But really, I like just being on the mound. So whenever the [manager] sees fit for me to get in there, then I'm happy. As long as I'm pitching.\"
\r\n
\r\nBrian Baisley
\r\n
\r\nWhen Baisley first sat with PinstripesPlus on July 1st, he was hitting .000 (0-for-11) on the season. He had handled the pitching staff well and was stellar behind the plate, but his offensive numbers were sub-par.
\r\n
\r\nBaisley, at the time, admitted that he was putting pressure on himself to snap the streak. He said that patience would be the key for him going forward, and in the next game, he had three hits.
\r\n
\r\nThe self-described \"notorious slow starter\" has raised his level of play in July like the mercury in a thermometer. He hit .429 with a .667 slugging percentage for the month and is now batting .290 for the season.
\r\n
\r\nHe credits hitting coach Ty Hawkins for helping him break out of the slump.
\r\n
\r\n\"We worked on some mechanical things in the cage,\" he said. \"But nothing really big. Pretty much, I think it was just that some balls started falling in. The law of averages.\"
\r\n
\r\nHis offense has picked up and he continues to excel defensively, but he hasn't gotten as much playing time as he would have expected. Gaylen Pitts has a rotation of catchers including him, Francisco Cervelli and Jose Gil.
\r\n
\r\nCervelli, the best hitter of the trio, has started 19 games and is batting .306 while Gil, the defensive specialist has played in 16. Baisley, stuck in the middle, has started just 9 contests.
\r\n
\r\nAsked about his platoon at the position, Pitts said that there isn't a set rotation.
\r\n
\r\n\"I do it based on gut feelings, mostly. I watch them and I see who is doing what well and I have an idea of who I want to start that particular game. It's not based on matchups or anything, just instincts and having a feel.\"
\r\n
\r\nBaisley said that he isn't concerned about playing time and remains focused on what he needs to do.
\r\n
\r\n\"I've got to keep doing my job when I go out there,\" he said. \"The pitchers have all been great so I try to call a good game and let them do their thing and make sure I don't mess anything up for them.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"As for the hitting, I hope to keep it up. I want to keep making solid contact and driving the ball up the middle.\"
\r\n
\r\nA consummate team player, he said that more than anything, what he would like is for this season to yield is another New York-Penn League championship for the Yankees.
\r\n
\r\n_____________________________________________________
\r\n
\r\nSubscribe to PinstripesPlus.com today! Only $79.95 brings you one full year of Total Access Pass and all premium content on PinstripesPlus.com, Scout™ Player and Roster Database (including the 'Hot News' at the top of the site), Breaking News and Information, Total Access to all Scout.com Websites, and Player Pages, detailing the progress and careers of players from high school, the minors, and the pro ranks.
\r\n
\r\nSample the PinstripesPlus.com Total Access Pass™ at no risk for 7 days, then pay only $7.95 or $21.95. If you want to save 2 months off the monthly subscription price, simply choose the annual PinstripesPlus.com Total Access Pass™ at $79.95.
","mobileBody":" \r\n(FREE PREVIEW OF PREMIUM CONTENT)
\r\n
\r\nJonathan Poterson
\r\n
\r\nOn June 22nd, Poterson, after having been sent down from Charleston, was batting .200 in Staten Island, but in an interview with PinstripesPlus, he said that he remained optimistic. Unfortunately for him, that average was his season-high and in the last month he's seen it nose-dive to a dismal .077 with just one run batted in.
\r\n
\r\n\"It's baseball,\" he said, clearly disappointed but unperturbed. \"That's the way the game goes sometimes. I'm still working hard and hopefully I'll climb out of it soon.\"
\r\n
\r\nAfter receiving playing time in late June, Poterson has been used sparingly, starting just eight of his team's last 28 games as the other outfielders have out-produced him.
\r\n
\r\nLast season, though his batting average was below where he would've liked (.225) he was productive, driving in a combined 65 runs for the Yankees and Riverdogs. Those numbers now seem incredible, given the trials he's endured this season.
\r\n
\r\nAsked about the possible reasons for his struggles, Poterson refuted the notion of his slump being caused by injury or flawed mechanics.
\r\n
\r\n\"I think it's more within,\" he said. \"I got away from what I did last year. I haven't been playing too much and I have been thinking too much.\"
\r\n
\r\nFor a first round pick blessed with immense talent, the expectations are even loftier than the signing bonus. Those factors can either motivate or bring about a feeling of contentment.
\r\n
\r\n\"There's no complacency, ever,\" said Poterson. \"I always have a drive to do better because you've never arrived. I don't care if you're a Hall of Famer, you haven't arrived and it can always be better.\"
\r\n
\r\nIn terms of tangible results, he has regressed since 2005 and what he's improved on thus far has yet to translate onto the field. Still, the 20-year-old is able to extract some positive from an overall negative experience.
\r\n
\r\nHe says that he's learned patience, both at the plate and in general, as he's had to cope with a lack of playing time and onlookers questioning his ability.
\r\n
\r\n\"Also, understanding the game and how it goes,\" he said. \"Not carrying at-bats into other at-bats and remaining mentally tough.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"You obviously always want to have better numbers,\" he said, when asked what he'd like to gain in the remaining 29 games of this season. \"But I want to keep a positive attitude and come out in every game and [win], no matter what my numbers look like.\"
\r\n
\r\nLuke Trubee
\r\n
\r\nTrubee, the Yankees pick in the 33rd round, is having the best season of his career, despite being used in a role he's not as accustomed to.
\r\n
\r\nThe 6-foot-3 right hander, who pitched to a 3.71 ERA at the University of Dayton, mostly as a starter, now has a 1.40 earned run average and a 0.94 WHIP as a reliever for the Baby Bombers.
\r\n
\r\n\"I guess it's just hard work,\" he said of his success. \"Every day, getting out here and working hard. Being mentally prepared every day.\"
\r\n
\r\nHe made 19 appearances out of the bullpen in college, but has assumed the role of full-time setup man and is adjusting well.,r> \r\n
\r\n\"It's been pretty good, he said. \"I don't think it's been too tough so far. Earlier in my career, I did a little of both so I guess the transition wasn't as hard for me as it would be for some guys.\"
\r\n
\r\nHe said that one of the differences between being a reliever and a starter is that he doesn't have to pace himself as much and can afford to attack batters the best he can.
\r\n
\r\n\"I like that part of it,\" he said. \"I can pretty much go all out because I'm only in there for an inning or two each night.\"
\r\n
\r\nTrubee features a fastball that he said tops out at 90 to 91 miles-per-hour, a slider and a changeup. His arsenal used to include a curveball, but he scrapped it earlier this summer and has switched to the slider.
\r\n
\r\n\"[The curveball] was my third best pitch and it wasn't as good as I'd like it to be,\" he explained.
\r\n
\r\nHe said that he and the coaching staff wanted to develop a pitch to compliment the changeup, his best pitch, and the slider was the one that he found most effective.
\r\n
\r\n\"For the rest of the year, I want to get better at throwing the slider and get that up to par,\" he said. \"I like where I'm at right now with stuff, but the slider needs work. If I can get that to where it can be, I'll be alright.\"
\r\n
\r\nPaul David Patterson
\r\n
\r\nPatterson is 2-0 this season with a 2.70 ERA and has had success in different roles, having started a game and recorded a save.
\r\n
\r\nThe 22-year-old, who was almost exclusively a starter at the University of Northern Kentucky, has taken well to being a member of the bullpen.
\r\n
\r\n\"It's a little bit of a different mindset because you get more time to get ready as a starter,\" he said. \"As a reliever, you have to be more rapid about getting ready. But as long as I'm pitching, I'm happy.\"
\r\n
\r\nHe throws a fastball, changeup and an occasional curveball. Patterson, who isn‘t overpowering and has only recorded 12 strikeouts this season, said that he relies on changing speeds and locating his pitches to get batters out.
\r\n
\r\n\"The main thing is to get that first pitch strike then keep them off balance,\" he explained. \"[I] throw a lot of changeups to get them out in front and force a lot of ground balls. That‘s the idea.\"
\r\n
\r\nAsked about whether he feels his height is beneficial or if it sometimes makes having consistent mechanics difficult, the 6-foot-8 hurler, whom his teammates have nicknamed \"Big Country,\" said that he feels it's to his advantage.
\r\n
\r\n\"I think it helps me. As long as I can stay tall and keep my arm up and make sure the ball is coming in on a downward plane, it works to my advantage,\" said the pitcher, who throws from a three-quarter arm angle.
\r\n
\r\nPatterson also tries to avoid overthrowing his fastball. \"The harder you try to throw it,\" he said, \"usually you tense up.\" He believes that a pitcher is able to get the best results when he is more free in his motion and isn't worried about velocity.
\r\n
\r\nHe said that in just a month at Staten Island, he has already improved his mechanics and credits pitching coach Carlos Chantres.
\r\n
\r\n\"I've gotten better at staying back and loading up on my back leg,\" he said. \"Carlos has done an excellent job with all the pitchers and I feel he's done an excellent job on me.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"I was lunging forward and kind of dragging my arm a little bit and he's got me to stay back, break at the waste and keep my arm up. I'm getting through my pitches a lot better now.\"
\r\n
\r\nPatterson, who feels comfortable with his progress thus far, said that he must develop more consistency and that's his goal for the rest of the season.
\r\n
\r\n\"My pitches are coming along pretty well,\" he said. \"My fastball and change have been good and my curve has been good in some spots. So I have to keep working hard and try to improve on everything.\"
\r\n
\r\nThough he seems content as a relief pitcher, Patterson still considers himself a starter and wouldn't rule out a possible return to a starting rotation, if his team needed him in that capacity.
\r\n
\r\n\"I've always been a starter and now that I'm a reliever, I like them both,\" he said. \"But really, I like just being on the mound. So whenever the [manager] sees fit for me to get in there, then I'm happy. As long as I'm pitching.\"
\r\n
\r\nBrian Baisley
\r\n
\r\nWhen Baisley first sat with PinstripesPlus on July 1st, he was hitting .000 (0-for-11) on the season. He had handled the pitching staff well and was stellar behind the plate, but his offensive numbers were sub-par.
\r\n
\r\nBaisley, at the time, admitted that he was putting pressure on himself to snap the streak. He said that patience would be the key for him going forward, and in the next game, he had three hits.
\r\n
\r\nThe self-described \"notorious slow starter\" has raised his level of play in July like the mercury in a thermometer. He hit .429 with a .667 slugging percentage for the month and is now batting .290 for the season.
\r\n
\r\nHe credits hitting coach Ty Hawkins for helping him break out of the slump.
\r\n
\r\n\"We worked on some mechanical things in the cage,\" he said. \"But nothing really big. Pretty much, I think it was just that some balls started falling in. The law of averages.\"
\r\n
\r\nHis offense has picked up and he continues to excel defensively, but he hasn't gotten as much playing time as he would have expected. Gaylen Pitts has a rotation of catchers including him, Francisco Cervelli and Jose Gil.
\r\n
\r\nCervelli, the best hitter of the trio, has started 19 games and is batting .306 while Gil, the defensive specialist has played in 16. Baisley, stuck in the middle, has started just 9 contests.
\r\n
\r\nAsked about his platoon at the position, Pitts said that there isn't a set rotation.
\r\n
\r\n\"I do it based on gut feelings, mostly. I watch them and I see who is doing what well and I have an idea of who I want to start that particular game. It's not based on matchups or anything, just instincts and having a feel.\"
\r\n
\r\nBaisley said that he isn't concerned about playing time and remains focused on what he needs to do.
\r\n
\r\n\"I've got to keep doing my job when I go out there,\" he said. \"The pitchers have all been great so I try to call a good game and let them do their thing and make sure I don't mess anything up for them.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"As for the hitting, I hope to keep it up. I want to keep making solid contact and driving the ball up the middle.\"
\r\n
\r\nA consummate team player, he said that more than anything, what he would like is for this season to yield is another New York-Penn League championship for the Yankees.
\r\n
\r\n_____________________________________________________
\r\n
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