A few quick thoughts on Hump Day…
Joe Girardi wants Gary Sanchez to bat second in the lineup.
Say what? Maybe it’s just me but I think the Yankees are better served by placing Sanchez in the third or fourth spot in the lineup. I could even buy into fifth, but second? Girardi must have a lot of faith in the bottom of the order. Otherwise, it sounds like Sanchez is going to have to count on his own feet for runs batted in. Seems like a waste for a multi-base hitter like Sanchez.
And Jacoby Ellsbury might bat fifth? What, was Siberia out of the question?...
Adam Warren, sit down.
Adam Warren has been told by the Yankees that he is slated for bullpen duty, thereby, knocking him out of the competition for the rotation. So, that means we are down to Luis Severino, Bryan Mitchell, Chad Green and Jordan Montgomery. No surprise, but glad to see Girardi is reducing the competition. I've felt all along that Warren's greatest value is as the designated swingman.
Jon “Arnold Schwarzenegger” Niese.
"I’ll be back…"
As expected, Niese has re-signed a minor league deal to remain in the Yankees organization. This will allow Niese more time to regain fastball velocity and eventually snag a role in the crowded Yankees bullpen if he is successful. Or he could represent rotation insurance. If not, it was a low risk signing.
He’s just a Rookie.
Congratulations to former Yankee Rookie Davis. Traded to the Cincinnati Reds in the Aroldis Chapman deal, the tall young right-hander has made the Reds starting rotation. Davis spent most of last year in AA, with some time logged at the AAA level. I wish him much success in the Show! He has a chance to be the Rookie of the Year although I am sure his mom has been giving him that award every year since birth.
Dustin time...well, maybe not.
Former Yankee Dustin Ackley failed to make the Opening Day roster for the Los Angeles Angels and will head to AAA. Baseball has been a tough sport for the one-time second overall draft pick.
Another Rule 5 Returnee.
While I am still waiting to see if C Luis Torrens (Padres) or Tyler Webb (Pirates) come back, the Chicago Cubs returned another left-hander to the Yankees. Caleb Smith, 25, saw limited action this Spring (6 1/3 innings, 8 hits, 3 earned runs, 2 walks, and 7 strikeouts). Presumably, he’ll head for AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. I guess you can never have too many lefties…
Future Yankees Captain?
As the new face of the Yankees, could Gary Sanchez be named as Captain at some point in the future? Although he uses an interpreter with the media, he has learned English and is able to converse with his pitchers. He the leader of the new Core and should continue to expand his influence on the team as he moves forward. If no Captain is named over the next couple of years, I could see Gleyber Torres eventually in consideration. But at this point, there’s no question this is Gary’s team.
All Good Things Must End…
Masahiro Tanaka’s Spring scoreless streak ended with yesterday’s 6-3 loss to the Detroit Tigers. Tanaka allowed two runs (one earned) in the first inning before settling down to allow no more runs through five innings of work. He gave up three hits and two walks, while striking out six. He finishes the Spring with a 0.38 ERA. I think he’s ready (in a statement of the obvious).
Aaron Judge hit a long solo homer in the 7th inning.
Ernesto Frieri gave up two runs and now has a 9.00 ERA through four innings of Spring work. I doubt he makes the Opening Day roster and will most likely take the Jon Niese route to the minor leagues for extended spring training.
Jordan Montgomery takes the mound for the Yankees (22-8-1) today in his final Spring performance and long-shot bid for the starting rotation. The Yankees will be at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium in Dunedin, FL to face the Toronto Blue Jays. Here’s hoping that Montgomery gives Joe Girardi an offer he can’t refuse.
Have a great day!