Spring Champs

Posted by Baseball Bob at 12:00
Mar 302017

I finally found the schedule, and the Yankees are officially the spring training champions (that is, best record in these no-count games): they lead St. Louis by 1 1/2 with one each to play. So yay!

More relevant is that the season starts this Sunday, with the Yankees visiting Tampa Bay for the Rays’ home opener. Their unofficial 25-man roster has leaked out, and the SS job temporarily belongs to Ronald Torreyes with Torreyes’ backup job going to Pete Kozma. Since Kozma isn’t on the 40-man roster, they have to make a spot for him, just as they would have for Tejada, Wade or Torres. Why, then, keep Kozma? Well, I suspect it isn’t ACTUALLY good news for Kozma, in some ways: it appears (to me) that their plan is to put him on the bench (he can play 2B, SS, 3B), play him as little as possible (late inning defensive replacement, possibly in interleague games after hitting for Torreyes) and then put him on waivers when Didi returns. If someone claims him from waivers, the Yanks lose him but get some money – if not he can be removed from the 40-man and returned to the minors.

The Yankees 25-man looks like 13 position players and 12 pitchers. The players are DH Holliday, C Sanchez and Romine, 1B Bird and Carter, 2B Castro, 3B Headley, SS Torreyes, IF Kozma, OF Gardner, Ellsbury, Judge, and Hicks.

Of those, Carter, Kozma, Hicks and Romine will be on the bench on opening day.

The Rotation is Tanaka, Sabathia, Pineda, Severino and TBA (they only need a 5th starter for the first time on April 16, 3rd time through the rotation). I honestly think it will be Jordan Montgomery, on NO ONE’S radar at the start of spring, but they could surprise me. Anyway, I think it will be between Montgomery, Green and Cessa (all sent to Triple A). I suppose Warren could still be a possible, but the other 3 will start in AAA, while Warren will relieve in NY. They are carrying, for the moment, 8 relief pitchers, but i think one of the stretched-out starters in Scranton will get the spot.

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