Thursday, May 7, 2015

Platooning Jose Pirela & Stephen Drew

Jose Pirela is finally back in the fold for the New York Yankees after joining the team before their second game in Toronto on Tuesday night. Pirela missed basically a month of the season after suffering a concussion late into spring training and has been on a rehab assignment in the Yankees minor league system for a couple of weeks now. With Pirela back and activated and incumbent second baseman Stephen Drew once again struggling would it make more sense to simply hand Pirela the second base job or would a straight platoon better suit the club?

The idea seems simplistic with Pirela batting from the right side of the plate and Drew batting from the left side of the plate but the biggest hang up is in Drew’s ability to put the ball in play and “hit it where they aint.” Pirela’s right handed bat has shown some pop, albeit in gap power less than it is home run power, in the minor leagues and would really help balance out and add some pop to the bottom of the Yankees order. Drew’s only saving grace offensively is his power as he has four home runs and ten RBI this season but when he is hitting lower than the .162 he hit last season between New York and Boston it’s getting harder and harder to justify giving him at bats in this lineup.

Drew has done exceptionally well manning the second base position and honestly may be the better option defensively even though Pirela’s natural and best position is second base. The Yankees love to stack left handed bats against right handed pitching so I don’t believe Drew’s job will disappear altogether with the addition of Pirela but I truly believe, in a platoon position or not, a ton of his at bats are going to be going elsewhere going forward. That may be the best news the Yankees get all month and they are likely to get Masahiro Tanaka back this month so that is saying something.

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)