Giovanny Gallegos was signed by the New York Yankees as an international free agent in 2012. The 6’2 right-hander out of Obregon, Mexico will enter the season as the #65 ranked prospect in the Yankees system according to the Pinstriped Prospects ranking.
Gallegos started his professional career with the Gulf Coast Yankees. He appeared in 12 games (four starts) for the team and pitched to a 1.67 ERA. He pitched 27 innings and struck out 22 batters.
He started and finished 2013 with the Staton Island Yankees. It was Gallegos first full pro season. The organization made him a full time starter for the entire season and he started 16 games going 2-8. The change to starter seemed to impact his command and it was not his best season. He pitched 65 innings to an ERA of 4.27. Most notably, he gave up 71 hits over the course of the season and only struck out 43 batters.
Gallegos was promoted to the Charleston Riverdogs for 2014. He pitched 29 total games during the season (six starts) and had a 5-5 win-loss record. He picked up his first professional save during the season and he also improved his strikeout rate. He averaged more than a strikeout per inning with 91 strikeouts over 88.2 innings pitched. He still had a problem with giving up hits as well in the season surrendering 108 hits. He finished the season with a 4.57 ERA.
2015 was a breakout season Gallegos. He started the season, and played the bulk of it, with the Tampa Bay Yankees. He made a full time move to the bullpen which helped him see a uptick in velocity and command. For Tampa, he pitched in 30 games to a 1.35 ERA. Gallegos struck out 54 over 53.1 IP and picked up 5 saves.
He got a brief call-up to the Double-A Trenton Thunder and struck out 7 in 6.2 IP. He also eventually made a cameo for the Triple-A Scranton Wilkes-Barre RailRiders and struck out 3 batters in two games.
Gallegos was able to start the year for the Thunder and continued his dominance as a reliever. In 17 games for Trenton he pitched to a 1.09 ERA in 33IP. He also struck out 53 batters and was 2-1 in Double-A.
He would soon enough be promoted to the RailRiders and didn’t skip a beat. He went 5-1 and pitched in 25 games in Triple-A on the season. He struck out 53 batters in 45 innings and picked up two saves. His ERA was 1.40.
Gallegos would also go on to be a vital piece of the RailRiders bullpen during their playoff run in 2016 where the RailRiders won the Triple-A National Championship.
The most recent season for Gallegos was the most exciting for him. He started the season with the RailRiders and picked up right where he left off. He was 4-2 with the RailRiders and had a 2.09 ERA. He pitched in 25 games saved five of them. He struck out 69 batters over 43.1IP.
Gallegos would also make his Major League debut in 2017. He debuted against the Houston Astros on May 12, 2017. He went up and down for the Yankees during the year based on need. In New York, he pitched 20.1 innings, struck out 22 and appeared in 16 games. He had a MLB season ERA of 4.87.
Gallegos, at 26 years old, is still a promising young pitcher. He has a very good fastball and commands it well. It sits in the mid 90’s and is his go-to pitch. He also features an excellent curveball which is best secondary pitch. The curveball is the pitch Gallegos relies on the most for his strikeouts and almost all of his pitches since becoming a full time reliever are either the fastball or curveball.
He also can mix in a change up and a slider but both pitches need work. They have looked viable at times but consistency for both pitches is a problem for Gallegos. They do have potential, though.
Gallegos will look to build upon his strong 2017 and improve enough to stick around the Majors for a longer period of time. He has flashed dominance in the minors and has the ability to do that at the Major League level. In order to take the next step in his career, Gallegos needs to miss more bats in the Majors. In his brief stint with the Yankees he gave up too much contact and when he’s on he’s a swing and miss type of pitcher. The Yankees showed a lot of faith in Gallegos when they chose to keep him around and on the 40-man roster when they knew they were going lose other highly touted players. Based off that, they believe he can be a solid big league reliever and Gallegos will try to live up to that in 2018.