The New York Yankees announced today that they had traded outfielder Ben Gamel to the Seattle Mariners in exchange for minor league pitcher Jio Orozco and Juan De Paula.
Orozco, 19, is in his second professional season after being drafted by the Mariners in the 14th round of the 2015 First-Year-Player Draft out of Salpointe Catholic in Tucson, Arizona. In two minor-league seasons, the right-hander owns a 5-3 record with a 3.73 ERA in 20 games, eight starts, striking out 87 batters in 70 innings of work. His best game of the season came on August 28 when he threw five innings, struck out 9 and allowed just one hit against the Arizona League Rangers.
Baseball America ranked Orozco as the 24th best prospect in Seattle’s farm system. During his high school days he was a teammate of Yankees prospect Donny Sands. According to reports, he gets his fastball up to 95 miles per hour and compliments it with a curveball and a changeup.
De Paula, 18, was originally signed by the Mariners on July 2, 2014, as part of their international free agent signings. He made his professional debut in 2015 when he went 5-4 with a 2.32 ERA and 68 strike outs over 77 2/3 innings in 14 starts. This season he has been pitching for the Arizona League Mariners and had 53 strikeouts over 41 innings in 11 games, seven starts for the Rookie-level team.
Ben Gamel gives the Mariners a solid young outfielder, someone who could contribute to the big league team shortly. The Yankees, however, continue to add talent to their farm system as they go through their rebuilding phase.