Details are just coming in, as multiple sources are reporting that the Pittsburgh Pirates have traded Jameson Taillon to the New York Yankees. Obviously much more will be added here as it comes in.
The Yankees have a deal in place to acquire RHP Jameson Taillon from the Pirates, sources tell me and @adamdberry.
— Mark Feinsand (@Feinsand) January 24, 2021
Source confirms: The Yankees have agreed to acquire RHP Jameson Taillon from the Pirates. The deal is subject to a review of medical records. First: @JonHeyman.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 24, 2021
— Joel Sherman (@Joelsherman1) January 24, 2021
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) January 24, 2021
Jeff Passan has names. More on all of them as soon as I can type them up
The New York Yankees have acquired Jameson Taillon from the Pittsburgh Pirates for Miguel Yajure, Roansy Contreras, Maikel Escotto and
Canaan Smith, sources tell ESPN.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) January 24, 2021
Miguel Yajure is a 22-year-old right-handed pitcher, ranked #15 on MLB Pipeline’s 2020 list for the Yankees. He actually moved up to seventh overall on the recently released top ten list by Baseball America.
Roansy Contreras is a 21-year-old RHP, ranked 19th on that same list.
Canaan Smith is a 21-year-old outfielder, ranked 21st
Maikol Escotto is an 18-year-old infielder, who is unranked and only has DSL experience so far. Escotto was a top target for the Pirates during the July 2nd signing period and thought to be a player they had an agreed deal in place with ahead of time, but he ended up going to the Yankees instead.
More to come
Yajure is the only player here with big league experience. He pitched three games for the Yankees in 2020, allowing one run on three hits, five walks and eight strikeouts in seven innings. BA says that he showed improved velocity in 2020, getting up to 92 MPH average on his fastball. He also throws a cutter, slider, curve and changeup. His curve rates at a 60 grade and his fastball, changeup and control all rate above average. Prior to his big league trial in 2020, he had just two starts at Double-A, so it’s possible that he won’t be in the majors at the start of the season, though there obviously isn’t much blocking him at this point.
Contreras gets above average grades for his fastball and changeup from Pipeline, while his curve and control are considered to be average. He can touch 97 MPH and has a changeup that is in the mid-80s. He throws strikes, but needs work on his command. He spent the 2019 season as a starter in Low-A, posting a 3.33 ERA in 132.1 innings, with a 113:36 SO/BB ratio and a 1.07 WHIP. He signed for $250,000 in 2016 out of the Dominican.
Smith was a fourth round pick in 2017 out of high school, getting a $497,500 bonus. He spent the 2019 season in Low-A, where he hit .307/.405/.465 in 124 games, with 32 doubles, 11 homers and 16 stolen bases. That was after struggling through a 2018 season in the New York-Penn League, where he hit .191 in 45 games, with a .596 OPS and no stolen base attempts. Pipeline ranks his hit tool as his best (55 grade), with everything else average or slightly below (45 runner).
The Pirates clearly liked Escotto prior to signing with the Yankees and he put up big stats in his first season, hitting .315/.429/.552, with 23 extra-base hits, 13-for-16 in steals, and 32 walks in 45 games. The only downside is 57 strikeouts in 218 plate appearances, which is pretty bad at the DSL level. He mostly played second base, but saw time at shortstop and third base as well. He received a $350,000 signing bonus.