Born: June 18, 1987
Height: 6’2″
Weight: 200
Bats: Left
Throws: Left
Drafted: 1st round, 44nd overall, 2008 (Yankees)
How Acquired: Minor league free agent
College: Stanford University
Agent: N/A


The Yankees drafted Bleich in the supplemental first round in the same draft in which they drafted, and failed to sign, Gerrit Cole.  At the time he threw 88-91 with an above average curve.  Teams were concerned about his durability.  More recently, his curve and change have been considered average.  His velocity has been in the upper-80s at times and in the low-90s at others, at least as a starter.  As a reliever, he was sitting at 92-93 in 2015.  Bleich’s career was derailed for the better part of three years, starting in 2010, by a torn labrum.  He’s also had trouble at times throwing strikes.

A-:  0-0-0, 6.00 ERA, 0.67 WHIP, 3.0 IP, 0.0 BB/9, 12.0 K/9

Bleich made one start after signing.  Baseball America ranked him 11th among the Yankees’ prospects after the season.

A+:  6-4-0, 3.40 ERA, 1.27 WHIP, 79.1 IP, 2.5 BB/9, 6.4 K/9
AA:  3-6-0, 6.65 ERA, 1.82 WHIP, 65.0 IP, 4.7 BB/9, 8.3 K/9

Bleich spent the first half of the season in the rotation in high A and pitched well, apart from a low K rate.  The Yankees moved him up to AA for the second half and he struggled, getting hit hard and also struggling to throw strikes.  On the year he had a fairly large platoon split.  BA ranked him 9th in the Yankees’ system.

AA:  3-2-0, 4.79 ERA, 1.52 WHIP, 41.1 IP, 6.1 BB/9, 5.7 K/9

Bleich struggled through eight starts in AA, walking more than he struck out.  Eventually he went out with shoulder problems and had surgery for a torn labrum.  BA still rated him the Yankees’ 26th best prospect after the season.


The shoulder surgery kept Bleich out all year.

R:  1-0-0, 0.00 ERA, 0.71 WHIP, 5.2 IP, 1.6 BB/9, 11.1 K/9
A-:  0-0-0, 2.53 ERA, 0.94 WHIP, 10.2 IP, 1.7 BB/9, 5.9 K/9
A+:  1-1-0, 3.86 ERA, 1.53 WHIP, 16.1 IP, 2.8 BB/9, 5.5 K/9

Bleich wasn’t able to pitch until late June.  He rehabbed through three levels, getting in only 32.2 IP total.

AA:  2-1-2, 2.76 ERA, 1.47 WHIP, 65.1 IP, 5.4 BB/9, 7.9 K/9

The Yankees sent Bleich to AA, where he made only four starts out of 27 games and generally had a light workload.  He had trouble throwing strikes.

AA:  5-6-0, 3.39 ERA, 1.24 WHIP, 79.2 IP, 3.1 BB/9, 7.7 K/9
AAA:  0-4-0, 6.68 ERA, 1.90 WHIP, 31.0 IP, 6.4 BB/9, 7.0 K/9

Bleich opened the season back in AA and mostly pitched well.  A mid-season promotion to AAA didn’t go well as he again struggled with the strike zone.

A+:  1-0-0, 0.00 ERA, 0.33 WHIP, 3.0 IP, 0.0 BB/9, 9.0 K/9
AA:  0-2-4, 3.25 ERA, 1.33 WHIP, 36.0 IP, 2.8 BB/9, 7.0 K/9
AAA:  0-0-1, 2.60 ERA, 1.04 WHIP, 17.1 IP, 1.6 BB/9, 5.7 K/9

Bleich wasn’t ready to go until late April.  After one game in Bradenton, the Pirates sent him to Altoona, then promoted him to Indianapolis at the beginning of August.  He pitched effectively without dominating, holding opponents to a 249/300/329 line without a lot of strikeouts.  He was deadly against left-handed hitters, holding them to a .480 OPS.  Right-handed hitters had more success, with a .722 figure.

Bleich will be a free agent again after the season.

2015: Minor league contract
Signing Bonus: $700,000
MiLB Debut: 2008
MLB Debut: N/A
MiLB FA Eligible: 2015
MLB FA Eligible: 2020
Rule 5 Eligible: Eligible
Added to 40-Man: 11/19/2010
Options Remaining: 3
MLB Service Time: 0.000
June 5, 2008: Drafted by the New York Yankees in the 1st round, 44th overall pick; signed on August 15.
November 4, 2014: Became a free agent.
November 18, 2014: Signed as a minor league free agent with the Pittsburgh Pirates.