Top Yankees prospect Deivi Garcia is officially auditioning for a role with the major league club.
The Yankees instructed Triple A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre to move the 20-year-old starter to the bullpen, RailRiders manager Jay Bell told reporters Wednesday.
“It’s a couple different reasons,” Bell said. “One, just to preserve pitches and that kind of stuff. But they also want to see if he’s an option in New York in September. So, we’ll see what happens there.”
Earlier this month, GM Brian Cashman said Garcia would come out of the bullpen if promoted to the Yankees. It’s a role Garcia told The Post two weeks ago he’d be “confident” in handling, and has handled before three times in 2017, going 2-0 alongside an 0.66 ERA in 13.2 innings with the Rookie Gulf Coast League Yankees and the club’s Advanced Rookie League Pulaski team.
Signed for $200,000 out of the Dominican Republic in 2015, Garcia has risen quickly through the farm system this season and is a candidate to be called up once MLB rosters expand to 40 men on Sept. 1.
The 5-foot-9 right-hander, who in June struck out 15 in a six-inning outing with Double-A Trenton, initially struggled upon his promotion to Triple-A in July. He has fared better in his last three appearances as he continues adjusting to the major league baseball, and overall, is 1-3 mark with a 5.01 ERA.
Garcia came out of the bullpen Saturday, though that was mostly because former Yankees reliever Ben Heller made a one-inning rehab start.
The precocious Garcia threw five no-hit innings, while walking five batters, and continued to show off the mid-90s-mph fastball, power curveball and improving change-up and slider that has made him a intriguing option for an inconsistent Yankees pitching staff.