The Yankees purchased the contract of right-handed pitcher Kaleb Ort from the Joliet Slammers of the Independent Frontier League on May 16, 2017. Before signing with Joliet in 2016, Ort played for Aquinas College, and in 2014 he appeared in 34 games, earned a 9-6 record with 173 strikeouts and a 3.71 ERA.
In 2016, he appeared in 20 games for the Slammers, 12 of them started, and struck out 61 batters over 61 innings pitched. In that time, he earned a 3-4 record with a 6.05 ERA. He earned Frontier League Player of the Week Honors in June when he allowed just one run on six hits over 13 innings over two starts earning two wins in the process. On June 19, 2016, he struck out nine batters over six innings.
In September 2016, he was signed by the Arizona Diamondbacks and assigned to their Arizona League Affiliate, but they released him in March.
Ort appeared in just one game for the Slammers in 2017 before joining the Yankees. In that game, he struck out three batters and allowed just a hit in two innings of work out of the bullpen. After joining the Yankees, he got his first taste of affiliated baseball with the Pulaski Yankees.
With the Pulaski Yankees, Ort went 2-0 with a 0.63 ERA in 12 games out of the bullpen. He struck out 23 batters in 14 1/3 innings pitched allowing four walks before being promoted to the Staten Island Yankees on August 6, 2017. With Staten Island, he was 1-0 with a 2.31 ERA and 16 strikeouts in 11 2/3 innings pitched.\onger competition. With this in mind, he should open the 2018 season in the Tampa Tarpons bullpen.