Who is Gerardo Concepcion?

You wouldn't like Gerardo Concepcion when he's angry.

So you’ve heard of Yoennis Cespedes, and you’ve heard of Jorge Soler, but have you heard of Gerardo Conception? He is the latest Cuban player to hit the hot stove news circuit after emerging as a free agent on Wednesday. Enrique Rojas of ESPN Deportes Los Angeles reported that the left-handed pitcher was scheduled to attend a training session at the Yankees’ Dominican camp on Thursday.

Concepcion projects to be everything the Yankees value in young pitchers. At 17, he broke out in the Cuban National Series, winning rookie of the year for his 2010-2011 performance. In that season he posted a 10-3 record with a 3.36 ERA through 101.2 IP. Now, 18, Concepcion is listed at 6’1” and 175 lbs, a thin frame that figures to grow and add velocity to his 89-91 MPH fastball. Concepcion’s secondary pitches include a plus curveball and solid slider and changeup.

2010-2011 Cuban League
18 10 3 3.36 21 16 101.2 103 42 38 6 43 53 9.1 3.8 4.7 4.75

As you can tell by the chart, the 4.75 FIP indicates Concepcion’s success in Cuba was most likely luck. His 4.7 SO/9 does not compliment the report of a plus curveball. Still, the other numbers are quite impressive when you consider his age and competition. A 3.8 BB/9 at such a young age, for a pitcher topping out at 94, illustrates above average control. When you combine the relative control with his 9.1 H/9 and a 0.53 HR/9, against Cuban hitters ten years older and in their prime, the statistics suggest that Concepcion has a very advanced feel for pitching.

As a young thin finesse left-hander, Concepcion projects to miss bats along with an ability to pitch to contact. Predicting the cost of such a prospect is difficult, but fellow Cuban Noel Arguelles offers a decent comparison. Arguelles inked a 5 year $7 million contract from the Royals back in late 2009, but with the new collective bargaining agreement, players under 23 years old count against a team’s spending pool, which should lower the price on such young players. The Yankees haven’t been huge spenders on the international market recently; I wouldn’t be surprised to see them grab up some of the young Cuban players available this offseason, Concepcion included.

Correction 1/20/12: According to Jim Callis of Baseball America, players who reach free agency in 2012 before the July 2nd International Signing Period, are not subject to the $2.9m spending pool. So assuming Concepcion signs before July 2nd, he will be one of the last young free agents to avoid the new CBA rules. Big thanks to commenter Ralph.

Mike is the co-Editor-in-Chief of It's About The Money. Outside of blogging baseball, Mike is also a musician, a runner, and a beer lover.

About Michael Eder

Mike is the co-Editor-in-Chief of It's About The Money. Outside of blogging baseball, Mike is also a musician, a runner, and a beer lover.

11 thoughts on “Who is Gerardo Concepcion?

  1. I believe the new rules in the new CBA for international spending doesn’t kick in until July when the new crop of 16 yr old prospects can sign which would suggest he can sign for more than what would be expected under the new rules. But ifreely admit I could be misunderstanding the new CBA

  2. Soler and Concepcion should snapped ASAP even if they have to go above every other offer by 4-5 million. The ability for the Yankees to grab high end talent is going to become more and more limited, they need to strike now while their considerable monetary advantage can be used. Neither may ever make it to the major leagues, but young projectable talent is exactly what they should be going after. I’m not huge on Cespedes just because of age and the fact that he is going to be paid as if he was a major league player already, but Soler and Concepcion are both extremely young and probably won’t be paid more than 12-15 million a piece for a total contract on the high side of things. The Yankees can certainly afford that kind of risk.

  3. i getting tired of the yankees talking about cutting back.these new agreements are going hurt baseball i.e draft etc.They should on a few of these cubans while the old rules apply.Texas rangers are spending more money on young players than yanks.that 15 million bid on yu the japanese pitcher was a disgrace,wake up!!!