MOOSIC — With the YES Network camera crew in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders clubhouse the first couple days of the season, starting pitcher Brady Lail didn’t think much of it.
While this was the first time he had a camera crew following him and his teammates, Lail said there wasn’t a long adjustment process. The clubhouse was already loose, and he didn’t feel having cameras present changed that.
“I never thought the day would come. I’m a dude from Utah,” said Lail, who was demoted to Double-A Trenton Sunday. “Covering the lifestyle of the minor leagues would be difficult. It’s just really cool to see and kind of get out how tough, what a grind each day is here. Yeah, there’s a lot of laughs in it too, which is awesome, but the fans can see that we’re still doing work but enjoying a little kid’s game. I loved it.”
YES Network premiered its docu-series, “Homegrown: The Path to Pinstripes” on May 1, and it has been on the network almost every day since.
For New York Yankees fans, the program is the first opportunity to get a gauge of the some of the organization’s top prospects before they come to the big leagues.
Yankees No. 2 prospect Clint Frazier and the other RailRiders who did one-on-one interviews for the program were excited to let their personalities shine during the episode.
“I think it gives an inside look of what you’re like in the clubhouse, what you’re like in a one-on-one interaction with the camera,” Frazier said. “I think it’s good for people to get to know us before we get (to New York) and kind of get a feel for how we are as a person.”
Wade making impact
Tyler Wade has been the RailRiders’ most impressive player this season.
Not only is the 22-year-old Scranton/Wilkes-Barre’s lead-off man, he’s registered starts at second base, shortstop, third base and left and center field.
Heading into the season, Wade didn’t have any regular-season experience in the outfield and had only made one start at third. But he used the Arizona Fall League to get adjusted to playing in the outfield, starting 16 of 18 games at either right, left or center field.
“This kid can play anywhere,” RailRiders manager Al Pedrique said of Wade. “For me, if he can play short, you should be able to play anywhere. I like the fact that he goes out, works very hard in practice, takes ground balls everywhere. Early work, he does such a good job with the way he goes about his business. Definitely, the kid has some tools, but it’s going to take some time for him to be ready and close to the big leagues.”
While Wade has been strong at the plate, batting .304 heading into Saturday’s game in Syracuse, he’s been a demon on the bases. His 11 stolen bases is tops in Triple-A, and is on pace for 50 steals this season.
It took some time for Wade to get comfortable in the field, committing three errors in his first 12 International League games, but Pedrique has noticed a clear improvement in his fielding the last couple of weeks.
In fact, Wade’s last error came on April 20 in Louisville, when he committed two playing shortstop.
“He’s throwing from third base was outstanding — quick feet, got the read off the ball quick, a couple double plays he started,” Pedrique said after the May 6 win. “This is a kid we just need to stay on top of. He needs to be consistent on slowing the game down. Sometimes he wants to be too fast and that’s one thing that you get by playing the game. He’s going to get a chance to mature and understand situations, and to be able to control situations when you’re playing through adversity.”
Adams to join SWB
New York Yankees No. 8 prospect Chance Adams was called up to the RailRiders Sunday and will make his Triple-A debut Monday against Pawtucket.
Adams has made six starts for Trenton and owned a 4-0 record paired with 1.03 ERA and 1.09 WHIP. He recorded 32 strikeouts in 35 innings pitched.
Refsnyder takes back hitting streak
It didn’t take long for Rob Refsnyder to take back his lead for the team’s longest hitting streak of the season.
Returning from a seven-day stint with the Yankees on Wednesday, the utility man wasted little time as he improved on his 11-game hitting streak with the RailRiders.
With a single in Friday’s loss to Syracuse, Refsnyder stretched out his streak to 14 games. He’s gone in the stretch 17 for 54.