The Yankees selected Frare in the 11th round of the 2012 MLB First-Year Player Draft. In his first taste of pro ball, Frare posted a respectable 2.74 ERA and 1.04 WHIP with 23 strikeouts over 23 IP for the GCL Yankees. Unfortunately, Frare’s development featured a couple of big speed bumps, as he missed all of the 2013 and 2014 seasons due to Tommy John surgery, as well an incident where he was hit by a car near the Yankees’ spring training complex in Tampa in February of 2014 .
This season, and with the injuries in the rear-view mirror, Frare has been absolutely lights out, anchoring the late innings of Tampa’s bullpen. The soon-to-be 23-year-old has struck out 24 and walked 11, and posted an impressive 0.90 WHIP over 20 IP. Frare has yet to allow an earned run, and batters are hitting a paltry .113 against him.
Take a quick look around, and you’ll find that Frare’s name is absent from virtually every Yankees’ prospect ranking list. So exactly how is the southpaw dominating FSL batters this season?
Frare has the bulldog mound presence and short-term memory that you love to see in a high-leverage reliever. He works quickly and fires the ball from a high three-quarters arm slot, generating downhill life and moderate deception. Frare’s bread and butter is his mid-90s fastball that has scraped as high 97 mph recently, with impressive late arm-side action. His slider lacks consistency but features tight, late breaking 3/4 depth at its best, allowing you to dream, and forecast above-average to plus potential. Frare also mixes in a fringy changeup that’s firm, but improving, thanks to his ability to maintain his arm speed and action. Overall it’s a solid profile from a young man with strong makeup.
Frare is essentially a lottery ticket until the consistency of his stuff and command improves, but his handedness, ability to miss bats, and his flashy power fastball/slider combination make him a prospect to monitor closely moving forward. He’s a lotto ticket that any organization would love to have in their back pocket. -James Chipman