Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Trade Breakdown: Brandon Drury To The Yankees

We first heard the name Brandon Drury mentioned in connection to the Yankees around the same time Manny Machado's popped up. There was a rumor that the team could acquire both Drury and pitcher Patrick Corbin. Corbin is still a Diamondback. Drury is headed to Tampa.

This deal was a a no-brainer, of course. Drury is only 25, can play both 2B and 3B and is under financial control. In 2017, in 135 games, he hit .267 with 13 HRs and 63 RBIs. A solid season.

The question now is: what happens to highly-touted prospect Miguel Andujar?

The word is that Andujar has just as much of a chance to be the Opening Day 3B as Drury does. I suppose that, if Andujar outplays Drury during spring training, that can happen. However, could both Drury and Ronald Torreyes stay on the roster? Sounds like an extra backup infielder to me, neither of whom can play 1B. Tyler Austin is the main candidate for backup 1B right now, but he's just as likely to get hurt as Greg Bird is.

I'm sure these things will work themselves out. After all, none of these guys is making a ton of money. It's not like the Jacoby Ellsbury situation. I simply cannot see a viable solution to that problem, especially with Ellsbury saying the Yankees never asked him to wave his no-trade clause. Sadly, it looks as if Clint Frazier could spend the season in Scranton, if he is not traded.

Then again, it is only February 21st. Plenty of time for things to be straightened out. And, if anyone can straighten them out, it's Brian Cashman.

First exhibition game Friday. It cannot come fast enough!

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Happy Pitchers and Catchers Day 2018!

Finally! Our long off-season nightmare is over. Well, for us fans, it was more like a dreamless sleep. For the over 100 free agents who still have not signed yet, it was, and continues to be, a nightmare.

That being said, today's the day Yankees pitchers and catchers report to training camp. Aside from physicals and the occasional mildly exciting comment to the media, however, nothing usually happens on this day. Yet, to me, it's one of the most exciting of the year. Just seeing footage of players walking into the facility warms my cold winter heart. 

We found out yesterday that a Yankees icon won't be walking into that facility this year and, probably never will again. Goose Gossage reminds me of a character from a book I just started reading, A Man Called Ove, by Fredrik Backman. Can't accept the fact that things change and feels people are rewarded in life for doing nothing. I hope the book has a happy ending, and I hope the same for this rift between Goose and the Yankees.

In the meantime, position players report on the 18th, and the first full-squad workout will take place on February 19th.

Bring it on!

Monday, February 12, 2018

Final Touches Dropping In Place For 2018 Yankees Roster

The long wait is almost over with the MLB season just about appearing over the horizon. March 29 2018 is the day we’ve all been waiting for and while it’s been a long process, the Yankees roster is just starting to take shape. In recent days, news has emerged over Spring Training invites and while these are non-roster arrangements for now, there are some interesting names in the mix.

Shaping Up

It’s been nine long years since the Yankees last claimed a World Series pennant but should fans be hopeful of landing their first success since 2009? The bookmakers could certainly build those hopes with Aaron Boone's men showing as one of three joint-favourites for 2018, along with Houston Astros and the Los Angeles Dodgers, but there are plenty of challengers beyond those sides. It's very tight at the top of the market so the bookmakers have tried to increase the overall value on offer with free bet promotions, as collated by online odds comparison site Oddschecker.

Boone came along as recently as December 2017 as the new Yankees manager and this is his first managerial role following a 12-year playing career, with many suggesting that a lack of experience will count against the 44-year-old.

2018 Roster

The biggest news in the offseason came with the arrival of the great Giancarlo Stanton, In return, the Yankees had to part with their All-Star Second Baseman Starlin Castro so, while the trade came at a cost, New York may well have the better part of the deal.

In seven years with the Miami Marlins, Stanton may not have picked up any team awards but his individual success showed why he needed to make the step up at 28. Stanton has four entries on All-Star teams in that period and reached a pinnacle when he was recognised as the MLB’s Most Valuable Player at the end of 2017.

Add in a host of other awards including the Silver Slugger, the Home Run Leader and the Hank Aaron Award and there are many reasons for Yankees fans to believe that they have made the signing of the season.

Stanton’s arrival was the highlight but the deals didn’t stop there: Jabari Blash arrived at Yankee Stadium from the San Diego Padres while, in return, New York offloaded Chase Headley and Brian Mitchell.

Blash is 28 but only made his MLB debut as recently as 2016 so his arrival has rightly gone under the radar to some extent. With eight home runs and an average of .200, there is some potential here but the loss of a player with Headley’s record and experience seems quite a big price to pay.

Latest News

The most recent news from the Yankees camp may not be quite as pivotal to the 2018 campaign but it does, at least, bring us right up to date ahead of the season’s first throw. And, of the spring training invitees, three names really stand out.

Justus Sheffield and Chance Adams are highly rated as pitching prospects and certainly look like good options for the future at Yankee Stadium. Similarly, outfielder Estevan Florial looks to be set up for a big career in the game so the news is good if slightly incidental.

At the other end of the age scale, the Yankees have picked up two veteran MLB players who will both be slugging it out for a place on the final 25 man roster. Danny Espinosa and Jace Peterson will also be along at spring training to put pressure on and try to get a confirmed gig for 2018.

Espinosa is a particularly interesting signing and, over 93 games for the LA Angels last year, he hit .173 with ten doubles and six homers. At 30, he still has a number of years in the Big League still available and Cashman will certainly consider promoting Espinosa to the full squad.


With a number of big league players still listed as free agents, General Manager Brian Cashman still has plenty of time to finalise things before the first match of 2018 but the team and the overall roster is starting to take shape for the new campaign.

After Spring Training is complete, it all starts for real with the four-match series opener against the Blue Jays in Toronto on March 29 and, after a busy off-season, the Yankees are looking in good shape for a serious title tilt.