There’s a lot of excitement about Deivi Garcia inside the Yankees organization, but he isn’t ready to pitch in the majors this season.
Deivi Garcia has enjoyed a meteoric rise through the Yankees system this season. He fully deserves his ranking as the organization’s No. 1 prospect. That does not mean that he’s ready to come to the Bronx and make an impact down the stretch.
It’s natural for Yankee fans to look to the minors for help given the struggles of the current starting rotation. Brian Cashman’s decision not to add reinforcements at the Trade Deadline only heightened the sense of anxiety pervading the fan base. That desperation, coupled with Garcia’s tantalizing talent, has many fans calling for Garcia to don pinstripes immediately.
Unfortunately, the 20-year-old isn’t mentally or physically ready to be thrown into a potential playoff run. Garcia has struggled since his promotion to AAA in July. There’s nothing to panic about based on his 6.63 ERA in just four starts, but it does prove to Yankees officials that the talented right hander isn’t due for a call up.
The reality is that Garcia is still an extremely young pitcher to be competing at the AAA level. Baseball reference indexes his age as a full 6.3 years below average for the level. At the moment, it’s clear that he is a boyish prospect trying to pitch against grown men. In particular, that’s causing him to struggle to keep the ball in the yard. He’s already given up five home runs in just 19 innings for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
None of this means that Garcia isn’t destined for big things in pinstripes. In time, he’s going to adjust to his current level of competition and his natural talent is going to win out. His devastating curve ball is capable of translating to a plus pitch at the major league level. Garcia just needs some additional time and tutelage in the minors to allow the rest of his repertoire to catch up.
The right thing for the Yankees to do would be to allow him to finish this season in AAA. That doesn’t mean help won’t be on the way for Aaron Boone’s rotation. Both Luis Severino and Dellin Betances are scheduled to return to the big league lineup before the season’s conclusion. That should be enough of an addition if the Yankees don’t suffer any other costly injuries to their starting rotation. Both injured stars should be more prepared to make a positive impact than Garcia at this point in their respective careers.
Instead, the Yankees should be focused on getting Garcia ready to compete for a spot in next year’s starting rotation. There’s no need to rush him to the big leagues when next season begins, but the door should be open for him if he proves he’s ready in Spring Training. Garcia is still a pitcher for the Yankees to be very excited about in the future. He’s just not a guy ready to impact them in the present.