"I felt like I pitched pretty well," Graham Stoneburner said. "I enjoyed my time in Staten Island and down in Tampa at Instructs. I got to work with some great coaches and things are working well so far.
"I felt like I pitched well. I concentrated on keeping the ball down as much as I could. My arm felt real good down there and I was able to locate better than I had been over the summer, and I think that helped me be successful."
Boasting a 93-96 MPH fastball and a plus slider, and doing it with such ease of motion, what might have been arguably the most impressive part of his mini-showcase at Instructs was the fact he hadn't received any professional coaching to date.
"It was mostly ‘hands off, see what you got' because they have the 30-day rule," he revealed. "They wanted to observe me more, get to know me, and see what kind of pitcher I am.
"I think Spring Training is going to be more of the time for instruction and for me to get to start working on some things, maybe change some things."
All signs point towards the biggest instruction being developing his changeup and throwing it a lot more often.
"At Instructs I didn't throw it as much," he said of his changeup. "For some reason, I'm not sure why, I didn't face all that many left-handed batters and I like to throw it more to lefties.
"I think that's something I'm going to work on in Spring Training, being more comfortable throwing it more to right-handed batters, and throwing it not just when I'm ahead in the count but throwing it in all counts and just getting more comfortable with it."
Originally slated to continue his offseason progression down at Dominican Instructs, a minor injury derailed any thoughts of that and put any plans of professional instruction on hold for the time being.
"I went down to Tampa to go down [to the Dominican Republic] and I had just a little bit of shoulder soreness, and the Yankees thought the best idea was to just shut me down, do some rehab, and get me ready for next season," he said.
"I was looking forward to going. Coming off of Staten Island where I had a great experience and at Instructs I had a great experience too so I was just hoping that would continue by going down to the Dominican.
"That would have been a time where they would have instructed me more after [Tampa] Instructs so I was looking forward to getting some instruction. It didn't work out so now I'm just excited to get back down to Tampa in Spring Training."
So considering he was throwing essentially just two pitches and pitched in two Staten Island Yankees games before throwing for just two more weeks at Instructs, creating the type of buzz he had in such a short period of time was quite remarkable.
"I felt at Instructs there was a buzz about a lot of people," a modest Stoneburner stated. "I was just overwhelmed by the amount of great players at Instructs, not only with the Yankees but with other organizations as well.
"It's like every single pitcher was throwing low to mid-90's and had a great curveball and a great changeup. It was just a great experience to be around a lot of the top prospects in our organization and to get to know them."
Stoneburner Quickly Created A Buzz
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