Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Don’t Look Now but Tyler Austin is Close


Don’t look now Yankees family but the problem to New York’s first base problems may be sitting in Triple-A as we speak. His name is Tyler Austin and while he has been out since spring training with a fractured foot he may be close to returning.

As I sat watching Derek Jeter Day while scouring Twitter I saw Austin post that he faced live batting practice and pitching for the first time since his foot injury. It is expected, and admittedly speculated as this did not come from the Yankees organization or manager Joe Girardi, that Austin could start a rehab assignment as early as this coming weekend. Now Austin would likely remain on that rehab stint for quite a while, two weeks or even longer after missing all of spring training, but with Greg Bird’s ankle injury showing no signs of improvement the Yankees may be willing to be patient and merely wait on Austin to return.

Chris Carter has been horrible to start the season after leading the National League in home runs in 2016 while the Yankees would like to limit the amount of exposure that Matt Holliday gets at the position going forward. Austin may be the Yankees saving grace this season, who would have thought we would be saying that in May before the season? Not I said Sam.

The problem the Yankees will face may be the potential roster spot. Sure, Austin can play first base and the outfield and he has played third base during his minor league tenure with the Yankees but having another first baseman may be a bit redundant. Would the Yankees designate Carter for assignment and/or trade him? Will they be forced to stick it out with Carter and hope that his power returns and his almost 50% strikeout ratio goes down?

I don’t have all the answers so I guess you will just have to stay tuned. Either way though it seems like Austin is close and Austin is coming. Welcome back in advance.


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