Matthew R. Yourkin
- Bats Right, Throws Left
- Height 6' 3", Weight 235 lb.
- School Saint Mary's College of California
- High School Napa High School
Matt Yourkin pitched in AAA for several years, leading AAA league in strikeouts, but did not make the majors.
Yourkin was All-State in high school. He signed with the Florida Marlins as an undrafted free agent out of college. He debuted as a pro with the Jamestown Jammers (2-3, 3.94) and Greensboro Bats (8 R in 6 IP) that summer. In 2005, he was with the Greensboro Grasshoppers (1-1, 2 Sv, 2.67, 33 K, 7 BB in 30 1/3 IP), Jupiter Hammerheads (2-2, 4.30, 30 K in 29 1/3 IP) and Carolina Mudcats (0-2, 4.05). His 54 appearances were third-most among Marlins minor leaguers. During 2006, he appeared for Carolina (1-4, 3 Sv, 3.91) and the Albuquerque Isotopes (2.95 ERA in 12 G), striking out 67 in 66 2/3 innings. He was third in the Florida chain behind Ross Wolf and Brad Clontz in games pitched (56).
In 2007, the Californian split time evenly between Carolina (1-1, 5.29) and Albuquerque (2.92 ERA, no decisions), appearing in 26 games for each. During '08, he continued his trend of appearing for multiple teams, but fell below AAA after two years split between AA and AAA. He spent the season with Jupiter (1-0, 2.93) and Carolina (2-5, 6.08, .316 opponent batting average).
The San Francisco Giants took him in the AAA portion of the 2008 Rule V Draft. With the 2009 Connecticut Defenders, he had his best season to that point, going 6-2 with a 2.42 ERA in 50 games, striking out 72 in 63 1/3 innings. Opponents hit .222 against him. He tied Jose Lugo for 7th in the Eastern League in games pitched. Returning to AAA after a two-year hiatus, Yourkin became a starter after six seasons in the bullpen. He went 7-8 with a 4.24 ERA for the 2010 Fresno Grizzlies.
The next year, the lefty had a 10-8, 4.69 record for Fresno. He allowed a .284 average despite 145 strikeouts in 167 innings. He led the 2011 Pacific Coast League in Ks (9 ahead of Brad Mills) and games started (29). He began 2012 back with Fresno but was horrendous in his first 14 games (1-4, 8.76, .339 opponent average), perhaps signaling that the end was near for the almost-31-year-old. He had not lasted more than five innings in any start. That was the case as he finished the year at 2-5, 9.25 in 17 games.
- 2012 Giants Media Guide