Tyler Wade is in the midst of the toughest battle in his young baseball career, he along with six others now including the recent signing of Neil Walker are competing for the “Opening Day” starting second base job for the New York Yankees. In this competition that will probably come down to the last day of Spring for a decision to be made. Wade has played himself into the position of frontrunner for the Opening Day second base job.
Now Spring Training numbers are to be taken with a grain of salt as they mean nothing once March 29th rolls around. And a great performance during Spring Training does not necessarily mean that you will have a good regular season. For instance Greg Bird was a man amongst boys during the 2017 Spring Training campaign and did not have remotely the MVP caliber season he had during Spring. But while Spring stats don’t give a full picture stats coupled with the “Eye Test” paints a much clearer picture.
Tyler Wade this Spring has 7 hits in 24 at bats for a .292 batting average along with 2 rbi’s and a stolen base. While again these stats may not seem like much when you watch the at bats that Tyler has, and you see his more aggressive nature at the plate. If you have watched any of Wade’s plate appearances you can see that he is actively looking to hit. While yes that is the very nature of what is his minimum job when he steps in the batters box. The visual difference from what could be considered a cameo appearance in the Major’s during the 2017 season is completely different from what he has looked like in Spring.
This off-season Tyler Wade worked out in California with future first ballot Hall of Famer Albert Pujols. Wade moved his hands from where he had them last season to this season. Just the slight change has allowed Wade to keep his bat in the strike zone longer and allowing him to drive the bat with more power towards the opposite field. No Wade is not going to hit 20 homeruns but he does have gap to gap power and a speed combination for doubles and triples.
Tyler Wade 2017
Tyler Wade 2018
Tyler Wade had a brief scare on Saturday’s game against the Mets at George M Steinbrenner Field when diving for a ball in the infield Wade appeared to roll over his wrist. It was a scary looking moment as you thought something may have broken. but Wade was able to start flexing his fingers and stretching out his hand. Reports shortly there after said that Wade was fine that he was laughing in the clubhouse and that he tried to stay in the game. He even grabbed his own bats with the hand/wrist that he rolled over on.
With the wrist seemingly ok look for Tyler Wade to continue his incredible pace and win the Opening Day starting second baseman’s job. Throughout his time with the big ball club in the Bronx during the 2017 season it was said repeatedly that Wade was just trying to hard and that wasn’t the real Wade. This Spring we are seeing the player that Yankees upper management has envisioned. 2018 should be a breakout season for Tyler Wade and if he can could his play into the regular season he very well could be a potential Rookie of the Year candidate.