Down on the Farm Report: Zach Putnam

Chris KreitzerSenior Analyst IMay 7, 2009

NEW YORK - APRIL 19:  Carl Pavano #44 of the Cleveland Indians pitches against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on April 19, 2009 in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

With all of the transactions concerning the bullpen being made at the Major League level yesterday, an interesting move was made in Akron.

As reported at Indians Prospect Insider, 2008 5th round pick Zach Putnam was called up from Kinston to pitch in the Aeros bullpen.

He was previously starting for the Little Indians, going 2-0 with a 4.13 ERA in 24 innings where he struck out 23 batters while only walking five.

The University of Michigan Wolverine is on the fast track to the bigs as he tops his fastball out at 96 MPH, along with a slider and a solid splitter that can be used as a changeup.

The 6-foot-2-inch, 215-pound Putnam became the first in conference history to earn two spots on the All-Big Ten team, earning recognition as a pitcher and designated hitter his last two seasons in college.

He was also Big Ten Pitcher of the Year, going 9-0 in 12 starts with a 2.58 ERA in his junior year. Over three seasons, he was 23-7 in 36 starts with a 3.12 ERA. He was also a tremendous hitter in college as well.

Putnam hit .307 with 11 home runs and 51 RBIs in 55 games. He was a career .307 hitter with 19 home runs and 114 RBIs in 132 games.

He helped Michigan win the Big Ten title in each of his three seasons and play in the NCAA Tournament each year. Maybe they could use him to pinch hit for Peralta!
In 2008, Putnam threw 9 2/3 innings in Mahoning Valley, striking out eight while posting a 3.72 ERA. It shows how much the right-hander is progressing to totally skip Lake County and only spend a month in Kinston.
It will be interesting to see where his maturation goes as Double A will definitely be a test. With really no hope in Columbus right now in the pen, Putnam may be on the fast track to Cleveland sometime in 2009 after only one year out of college.
Cleveland Indians Blog