Clayton Beeter is a pitcher in the Yankees farm system.

Clayton Beeter is a pitcher in the Yankees farm system. Credit: Somerset Patriots

Growing up a Rangers fan in Fort Worth, Texas, Clayton Beeter watched plenty of Joey Gallo’s career unfold.

So when the former Dodgers starting pitching prospect learned on Aug. 2 that he had been dealt to the Yankees for Gallo, it came as a surreal, full-circle moment.

“Yeah that was pretty weird,” Beeter, 23, told reporters on Tuesday. “I told my girlfriend that it was crazy that I grew up watching him and ended up getting traded for him.”

The 6-2, 220-pound righthander, who was chosen in the second round of the 2020 MLB Draft out of Texas Tech, is the No. 10 prospect in the Yankees’ organization, according to MLB.com.

He made his minor-league debut for Double-A Somerset on Wednesday and featured a fastball that topped out at 98 mph and a low-80s curveball. Beeter tossed three scoreless innings in a 9-0 victory over Hartford, striking out six and allowing no hits and one walk.

After going 0-3 with a 5.75 ERA, 88 strikeouts and a 1.61 WHIP in 18 games this season with Double-A Tulsa, Beeter believes his stats aren’t reflective of the progress he’s made to this point in his career.

“I guess I’m not as upset with my season as the way my numbers look,” he said. “I don’t really feel like I need to change a whole lot. Just get a little better in some of the areas and things will start going a lot better.”

Beeter revealed that he first learned of the trade in a somewhat surprising, modern fashion.

Scrolling through Instagram early that day while his team made a road trip through Arkansas, he noticed a comment directed toward him that read, “Welcome to the Yankees.”

“I looked over at my buddy and said, ‘That was a little weird.’ Then my friends started texting me because it had come out on Twitter,” Beeter said. “And then it was another hour, hour and a half before I officially knew from a phone call.”

Once the initial combination of confusion and shock wore off, Beeter said the Yankees’ history of success energized him as he prepares for a new journey.

“For me, it was mainly just being excited for a fresh start,” he said. “I was also sad to leave my teammates. I had been there for two years and had some really good friends over there.

“But I was really excited to come here, especially coming to the Yankees. It’s not like I was going to a lower-level organization. I knew that the Yankees take pride in what they do over here.”

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