New York Yankees Undrafted Free Agent Tracker
It's been a few days since the conclusion of the 2020 MLB Draft, but that doesn't mean the Yankees are done adding prospects.
As of Sunday morning, all 30 big-league teams are permitted to sign an unlimited amount of undrafted free agents. These players – who didn't hear their names called on Wednesday or Thursday – can sign for a maximum of $20,000.
Considering this year's draft was shortened to just five rounds – due to the novel coronavirus pandemic – there's plenty of qualified and talented players available.
New York's draft class consists of three players, the smallest pool from those five rounds around the league. That's because the Yankees forfeited its second- and fifth-round selections when signing Gerrit Cole this winter.
Inside The Pinstripes is keeping tabs on which undrafted free agents sign with New York on Sunday and beyond. Below, you'll find a (growing) list of names that have been linked to the Bombers in chronological order, along with a brief caption explaining what each prospect brings to the organization.
Carson Coleman, RHP, Kentucky
The first player to be signed by the Yankees is Carson Coleman, a right-handed reliever from the University of Kentucky. His college club tweeted out the news Sunday morning, congratulating their junior hurler.
Across three seasons toeing the rubber at Kentucky, Coleman posted a 4.19 ERA over a total of 53 2/3 innings pitched (in 49 games). He struck out 81, setting his strikeout-per-nine ratio at a blistering 13.6.
Trevor Holloway, RHP, Central Florida
Per Baseball America's undrafted free agent tracker, New York added another right-hander shortly after Coleman. Trevor Holloway, of the University of Central Florida, was next to agree to a deal with the Yankees.
After transferring to UCF, the redshirt junior has made 10 total starts across two seasons. In that span, the right-hander has a 1.64 ERA with 66 strikeouts in 49 1/3 frames. He's held opposing hitters to a .166 batting average.
In the coronavirus-shortened season this spring, Holloway was ranked in the top 40 nationally in strikeouts (37) and strikeouts per nine innings (14.69).
Jarod Lessar, RHP, BYU
Another signing, another right-handed arm.
Next up, according to Baseball America's tracker, is Jarod Lessar from BYU.
Lessar, a senior, has made 24 total appearances (11 games started) across two years at BYU. In 65 innings, he's posted a 4.43 ERA. He spent this spring chiefly in a starting role, making four starts (out of five overall appearances) while lowering his ERA and increasing his strikeout-per-nine rate ever so slightly.
Ocean Gabonia, RHP, Everett Community College
Finally, as of Monday afternoon, Ocean Gabonia rounds out the list of UDFA signings. As a freshman at Everett Community College (in Washington) this spring, Gabonia made three starts, posting an ERA of 2.40 in 15 innings with 23 strikeouts.
Connor Pellerin, RHP, Tulane
You can add a fifth right-handed pitcher to the Yankees' growing list of undrafted free agent signings.
Connor Pellerin, a junior from Tulane, made six relief appearances this spring for the Green Wave. In those four innings pitched, Pellerin struck out 10, allowed just one earned run and posted a 2.25 ERA.
Since 2020 is such a small sample size for this prospect, take a look at his stats across three seasons on the mound at Tulane. Through 74 2/3 innings pitched (in 55 games) Pellerin has a 5.67 career ERA with 94 strikeouts.
Elijah Dunham, OF, Indiana
It took until Wednesday evening for New York to sign a position player via the undrafted free agent pool.
Elijah Dunham, from Indiana University, announced he had agreed to terms with the Bombers with a post on social media. The left-handed hitter was dominant to kick off his junior season, starting all 15 of the Hoosiers games this spring before COVID-19 pandemic.
In that stretch, the lefty-swinging outfielder hit a scorching .390/.493/.559 with an OPS of 1.052.
Aaron Palensky, OF, Nebraska
One day after Dunham announced he had signed with the Bombers, a second Big Ten outfielder was added to the UDFA mix.
Aaron Palensky confirmed he had agreed to a deal with New York with a post on social media Thursday morning. Palensky was hitting .302 when the COVID-19 pandemic halted his junior year after just 15 games.
In that span, the right-handed hitter was tied for the team lead in home runs (4) and led the way in runs scored (15), doubles (5), walks (15) and RBI (19).
Clay Aguilar, LHP, Houston
New York finally adds a left-handed pitcher.
Clay Aguilar, a junior at the University of Houston, was dominant to start of the 2020 season. In four starts, the southpaw was 2-0 with a 1.59 ERA. He went 8-4 with a 2.49 in 25 appearances (18 starts) across his three years at Houston.
Left-handed pitcher was the position many presumed the Yankees would address early and often this week between the MLB Draft and subsequent signing period as it's arguably the club's biggest weakness in the farm system. It took a three-player draft class and six previous undrafted free agent signings before the Bombers agreed to terms with a southpaw.
Blane Abeyta, RHP, Nevada
For the Yankees' ninth undrafted free agent, the club has returned to right-handed pitching.
Blane Abeyta announced he had come to terms with the Bombers with a post on social media. The junior made seven appearances as Nevada's closer this spring, striking out 12 and converting two saves in eight innings. In that span, he posted a 3.38 ERA.
Stay tuned for more names to be added to this list. In the meantime, here's more content from our coverage of the Yankees 2020 MLB Draft class:
- Yankees Make Biggest Strength Even Stronger With Draft Class, UDFAs
- Breaking Down the New York Yankees' 2020 MLB Draft Class
- MLB Draft Experts Analyze and Grade Yankees' 2020 Draft Class
- Yankees' First-Round Pick Austin Wells Draws Comparisons to Kyle Schwarber, Bryce Harper
- Austin Wells is Ready to Hit Homers at Yankee Stadium, No Matter Where He's Playing on Defense
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