(WTNH)–When Justus Sheffield has all of his pitches going, he’s tough to beat. Earlier this month against the Yard Goats, he made it look easy.
Sheffield came to the Yankees last summer in the Andrew Miller trade with the Cleveland Indians. Family and friends weren’t sure how to react to the news.
“They didn’t really believe me at first, they had to go on Twitter and things like that,” Sheffield said. “It tells you how much my family believes me about things.”
The Yankees certainly believe in him. He’s their top pitching prospect in the organization.
“oh sheff man, he’s made a lot of strides this year, he’s not a thrower anymore, he’s actually a pitcher”
Sheffield understands he has a lot of work to do, and that he needs to be patient.
“I feel like its kind of easy to be patient just because I know that there are certain things that I do need to work on before I go to the next level or even in the big leagues,” he said.
Sheffield is listed at 5’11, 200 pounds. His fastball tops out at about 95 miles per hour. When you watch him pitch, he sort of reminds you of former big league star Johan Santana.
“That’s actually hilarious that you said that because my pitching coach actually talked to me about it a couple weeks ago to look at videos of Johan,” Sheffield said.
This spring in Tampa, it was another lefty that he really tried to learn from.
“I got a chance to talk with CC and pick his brain a little and working a little bit of his game into mine,” he said.
Sheffield could be the one to replace Sabathia someday–if and when he gets to the big leagues—he wants to be there for a long time.
“When I go up there, I don’t just want to have a spot start here or there and then get optioned and things like that, I want to get up there and make an impact right away,” he said.