Jose Campos said was a bit anxious headed into his first start as a member of the Yankees organization. Clearly, he got over his nerves quickly.
New York's No. 5 prospect allowed only two baserunners over six innings in his debut with the organization on Friday, combining with two relievers on a one-hitter in Class A Charleston's 1-0 blanking of the Rome Braves.
"The first inning, I was a little bit nervous," Campos said through a translator. "But I was able to handle it and keep pitching and keep going pitch after pitch."
The 19-year-old right-hander struck out three and walked one in his first start at Class A. He threw 42 of 65 pitches for strikes.
"The changeup and curveball were pretty good today," Campos said. "I was changing speeds for the batters and throwing strikes."
The Braves' only hit came in the fifth. After Edison Sanchez drew a leadoff walk, William Beckwith hit a ground ball through the right side to end the no-hit bid. Campos was able to recover by inducing a double-play ball off the bat of Chase Larsson, then getting another grounder from Felix Marte.
"I wasn't thinking [about the hit], about a perfect game or anything," Campos said. "I was just going pitch by pitch."
Signed by the Mariners as a non-drafted free agent in 2009, Campos posted a 2.32 ERA over 81 1/3 innings for short-season Everett last year. He fanned 85 and walked 13, earning a spot on the Northwest League postseason All-Star team. The highlight of his year came on Aug. 13, when he took a perfect game into the seventh inning.
Campos was acquired by the Yankees in January as part of the trade that sent Michael Pineda to New York for catcher Jesus Montero and right-hander Hector Noesi. When he first found out, he didn't believe it was true.
"I didn't know at the time because the only thing in the news was that Pineda and Montero had been traded," Campos said. "But one of my cousins told me that I was traded. I didn't believe it. I got online and started searching for it. I found out it was true and felt really happy. My family was happy, too."
Pedro Guerra and Philip Wetherell worked the final three innings for the RiverDogs on Friday, keeping the Braves off the basepaths and combining to strike out six of the nine batters they faced.
Charleston was paced offensively by Gary Sanchez and Mason Williams, the Yankees' No. 3 and No. 4 prospects, respectively. Sanchez went 2-for-3, while Williams smacked a pair of doubles out of the leadoff spot. Kelvin De Leon produced the lone run with a solo homer.
"I see a bright future for this team," Campos said of his highly touted teammates.
For the rest of the season, the native of Venezuela wants to focus on developing his pitches, with an eye on the higher levels.
"I want to continue working on the changeup and curveball. Work hard on every pitch, every day. Give a good effort every day. And, hopefully, I can get promoted," he said.