Former 1st rounder Van Benschoten joins Thunder
With right-hander Christian Garcia out for the season with a torn elbow ligament, the Yankees have sent the Double-A Thunder John Van Benschoten from extended spring training.
Van Benschoten, who turns 30 on Wednesday, originally was selected by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the first-round (8th overall) of the 2001 June draft. He made his Major League debut on August 18, 2004 and has a career record of 2-13 with a 9.20 ERA in 26 games with the Pirates.
Van Benschoten was the Pirates’ top prospect when he faced the Thunder for Altoona in June of 2003, but his career has been slowed by injuries, including surgery in 2005 to repair a torn labrum.
“It’s not about where you were, it’s about where you are and (Trenton) is a place to play,” he said. “Nowadays, it does not seem to matter where you are. You always have something to prove and you always have to get better. If you are playing somewhere, that’s all you need. As long as you have a uniform you have an opportunity. We all want to get to the big leagues.”
With Lance Pendleton announced as tomorrow’s starter against Akron at Waterfront Park, Van Benschoten will work out of the Trenton bullpen.
Akron 5, Thunder 1 (F)
Erik Stiller W, 1-0
D.J. Mitchell L, 0-1
Rough Double-A debut for Mitchell. Allowed eight hits and four earned runs in just 3 2/3 innings.
Van Benchoten was first out of the bullpen and turned in 2 1/3 scoreless with a walk. Second baseman David Adams continued to rake with three hits in four at bats, giving him 11 over his first 20 plate appearances (.550).
Shortstop Luis Nunez homered in the sixth inning for the lone Trenton run.