BARNSTORMERS INK FORMER AAA RELIEVER: Espinal to Join Lancaster Bullpen
The Lancaster Barnstormers have signed RHP Yoel Espinal to a contract for the 2021 season, it was announced today by manager Ross Peeples.
Espinal’s signing brings the number of players under contract to 19 for the upcoming campaign.
The 28-year old right-hander’s career dates back to 2011 when he was initially signed by the Detroit Tigers. He missed two full seasons before resurfacing with the New York Yankees organization in 2015. Since then, the hard throwing reliever has spent three seasons in the Tampa Bay Rays system and one with the Texas Rangers. He had signed with the Boston Red Sox prior to last season’s pandemic shutdown.
Espinal has spent a portion of two campaigns at the Class AAA level. In 2017, he reached Durham of the International League for 12 appearances and returned to that level for four outings at Nashville in 2019.
His best stretch came at Class A Bowling Green in 2016. In 26 games for the Hot Rods, Espinal was 5-0 with four saves. He posted a 1.84 ERA and struck out 71 batters in 58.2 innings of work.
Over his career, Espinal has averaged 10 strikeouts per nine inning of work while allowing only 6.3 hits in a nine-inning game. He has only yielded 29 homers in 384 career innings of work.
“Espinal is potentially a back end guy for us,” said Peeples. “Rumor has it that he has a big league slider, too. He was on the verge of getting a callup and was expected to make his debut in 2020.”