The New York Yankees pulled double duty today and played a split-squad game one against the Detroit Tigers in Tampa, Florida, and the other against the Boston Red Sox in Fort Myers, Florida. So today, we will cover both games. This article will focus on the Yankees versus the Red Sox. Here are your three biggest takeaways from this game.
26th Roster Spot Keeps Getting Interesting
Thairo Estrada is among the candidates for that final roster spot. Estrada would add value to his claim with some smooth defensive plays at shortstop. Gleyber Torres will be the “everyday” shortstop, but he can not play every day. So having a reliable and sure defender to backup Torres will be very important. And if Thairo can prove a little bit offensively, he can easily find himself on the Major League roster for Opening Day.
Clint Fraizer has been remarkable this Spring. Offensively, we have known what Clint Frazier can provide. We all remember the ringing endorsement by Yankee GM, Brian Cashman, of the “lightning bat speed,” but it has been his defense that has been the question. Thus far this Spring, Frazier has been better in the outfield and has been a monster at the plate.
Jordan Montgomery was very Effective
Jordan Montgomery came into Spring as the favorite for the fifth starter spot in the Yankees rotation. However, as has been documented, the Yankees will be without James Paxton for the first couple of months of the season and without Luis Severino for the entire 2020 season. This now moves Jordan Montgomery up to the fourth starter spot in the rotation. And Montgomery was quite impressive in his outings against the Red Sox. Monty would allow just one hit and strikeout four in two innings of work in Fort Myers.
Don’t Sleep on the Veteran Catchers
Going into Spring Training, it was believed (and honestly is still likely the first option) that Kyle Higashioka would be the Yankees backup catcher on Opening Day. But the Yankees brought in three veteran backstops in Erik Kratz, Chris Iannetta, and Josh Thole. These three experienced catchers are competing with each other and with Higgy for the backup spot. As the Spring continues, we will keep monitoring the situation with the backup catcher job.