Jones Didn’t Feel Like A Yankee

Interesting article today in the Pioneer Press, passed along to me by a colleague.

Former Yankees prospect and Thunder pitcher Jason Jones was picked up by the Minnesota Twins in the Rule 5 Draft, and he seems to be happy to get a chance in another organization.

“That’s how I would describe it — you just don’t feel like a part of the team. There are the veterans — the superstars — and then the rest of the guys,” Jones told the paper. “Here, there are superstars too, but it feels a lot more like we’re a team. It’s a lot better chemistry.”

He also talked about his relationship with Yankees GM Brian Cashman: “I don’t think I ever talked to (him), other than ‘hi’ and ‘bye’ a couple of times,” and the lack of opportunity with the Yankees, “They give young guys an opportunity here. The last couple of years for me, there’s just been no opportunity.”

Interesting stuff.  I’ll be very curious to see if Jones sticks with the Twins this spring.  And if he doesn’t, it seems unlikely that he’d want to go back to the Yankees.

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT

14 Responses to “Jones Didn’t Feel Like A Yankee”

  1. YankFanDave Says:

    Let’s hope his baseball IQ is higher than his PR IQ. As you pointed out, as a Rule 5 draftee, he will come back to the Yankees if he does not stick with the Twins 25 man roster for the season, which is what happens with most Rule 5 draftees. That’s bright Jason, smash the team that you’re likely to return to. Also, he talked about the importance of “chemistry” and “team”, but it was not very team first-like to take a shot at your old team. Question, did he ever actually get invited to a Yankees major league spring training? Because if he wasn’t, when would he have been around those Yankee “superstars.” This all seems as if it was in his head. There is a certain degree of poor me, poor me coming from him and maybe that is why he was left unprotected.

  2. mbn007 Says:

    He must be hoping against hope that the Twins either keep him, or trade him to a pitching-poor team who will keep him in the Majors for 2009. But to rip your old organization, when the odds clearly state that you are likely to be back there within 6 weeks, is not smart.

    I liked Jones, but clearly he was behind the other names in the loop, like Hughes, Kennedy, Coke, Acevedo, et al, for a starters job in NY. And the pen is even more crowded in the upper minors then it is in NY.

    Where his future is, is anyone’s guess, if he comes back here in April.

  3. SP Says:

    I saw a link to this article on another blog that said Jones had “harsh words” for the Yankees organization.

    After reading the article, I honestly didn’t find anything inflammatory or “wrong” with what he said. It seems like he was just being honest about his situation in the Yankees organization. It’s a pretty well-known fact that he didn’t get much of a chance there.

    I think we’re so used to hearing these guys talk in cliches, that when they don’t, it’s almost surprising. But still, if he winds up being returned to the Yankees, people won’t view him so well and he’ll have to answer a lot of questions.

    Obviously, he seems pretty confident in his chances with the Twins (or he probably wouldn’t have said all this). I hope it works out for him there.

  4. RIKERS Says:

    They are ripping Jones on Pete’s blog

  5. David Says:

    I wish Jason Jones well. I hope he makes the Twins 25 man roster. I understand he is frustated about his opportunities with the Yankees. He also seemed like a good guy when he pitched for Trenton.

    I think he is hoping that if he doesn’t make the Twins 25 man roster that the Yankees and Twins make a trade. This way he will be playing at AAA Rochester and could get called up to the Twins during the year if needed.

    Where would he play if the Yankees take him back? Trenton? That would be is third year at the AA level. He would just be blocking a player that belongs in Trenton instead of Tampa.

  6. SteveB Says:

    Jones made a mistake by telling the truth. You never should burn your bridges. He was definitely passed over last year, more than once. Too bad, but now he is better off in another organization. I hope he stays with the Twins and they give him a solid shot.

    Seems like if you’re not a fast-throwing strikeout pitcher, you aren’t as seriously considered. You can talk about the pitching talent in the Yankee organization, but I don’t think it mattered. Chase Wright is another example, he is better off elsewhere too. I wish them both well.

  7. River Avenue Blues, A New York Yankees Blog Says:

    […] Mike Ashmore, current Twin and ex-Yank Jason Jones had some mighty big words for his former organization. From […]

  8. SP Says:


    I definitely agree with what you said about how pitchers aren’t always taken seriously if they don’t throw 95. Of course, there are exceptions.

    But it reminds me of Dan Giese, who pitched well throughout his minor league career, but kept getting passed over because some thought his repertoire wasn’t good enough for MLB…and I think velocity had a lot to do with those assumptions. Funny that it was the Yankees who finally gave him a legit chance.

  9. SteveB Says:

    That’s true about Giese. But I think the Yankees gave him that chance more because 2008 was his first year in the Yankee organization, so they didn’t have preconceived notions about him and he was surprisingly virtually unhittable in Scranton and at the major league level the Yankees were so strapped for starters they were using guys like washed-up Sidney Ponson. I’m surprised he’s still on the roster, to be honest with you. I will be even more surprised if they keep him on the roster as the long man/spot starter rather than a younger guy like Aceves when they break camp.

    I am not crazy about radar guns. A useful tool, but everyone relies too heavily on them. The big question when deciding about a pitcher is- “does he get outs?”

  10. boreifs Says:

    You could be right, because if Melancon makes the team Giese seems like the odd man out, unless of course someone goes on the 60-day in spring training (likely to happen).

  11. David Mac Says:

    I don’t think JJ said anything that the Yankees don’t know. It’s the kind of conversation he had with beat reporters in Trenton after almost every start. I remember 1b Aaron Rivkin voicing the same kind of frustrations when he was in the Yankees system at Trenton….Of course you want to get your chance, particularly when you do well at this level and don’t see advancement. I don’t think he burned any bridges, because he has never been in the Yankees plans anyway…

  12. Erik Says:

    Hi Mike
    Any idea where Jason Brown is theese days???
    Im gonna miss seeing him in ST next week when I go.
    You think Jennings would know???

  13. tdevils Says:

    That’s probably your best bet, since he’ll actually be down in FL at some point…

  14. SteveB Says:

    I suspect Melancon will start the season in Scranton because the Yankees will end up deciding to keep relievers with MLB experience instead. But if Melancon blows people away during the spring (a distinct possibility), that could change. But I think he’s fighting an uphill battle right now. And I also think the Yankees would want to see how he starts the season anyway– what I mean is if he continues what he showed in 2008. Either way, I have no doubt 2009 is the year we see Melancon in the Bronx, and I think once he gets there he’s never coming back.

    Meanwhile the Yankees still need a long reliever/spot starter, so if it’s not Giese, it’ll be Aceves. Maybe they’ll keep Giese & bring up Aceves to spot Joba. There is also the chance they’ll use Coke in that capacity, but I like Coke better the way the Yankees used him last September. That seems more his niche to me.

    The Yankees have a real good pitching staff this season, starters & relievers. This could be a fun year.

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