There was a time not too long ago when the Yankees were shedding their aging stars, and fans looked forward to seeing the glut of talent aptly named the Baby Bombers coming together as the team of the future. But that was before the Yankees were a legitimate candidate to win their 28th World Championship.
Brian Cashman continues to make all the right moves when it comes to the Yankees player personnel. Cashman goes against the grain and does not seem to be swayed by the popularity of the decisions he makes. Unloading Gleyber Torres, Chance Adams, Justus Sheffield, Miguel Andujar, and (soon) Clint Frazier is going against the grain of fans who feel they “should at least be given a chance.”
And if they were not part of the New York Yankees and the property of most major league teams, they probably would be given that chance. Cashman’s mind doesn’t seem to think that way, though. His thinking is twofold, and he’s not backing away.
One, pennant-winning teams do not overstack their starting lineup with rookies. The mix of winning teams always favors a rich blend of experience with a dash of salt and pepper and a couple of rookies. Tyler Austin and Tyler Wade will be next in line among the Baby Bomber to play at Yankee Stadium. Each has caught the eye of Yankees manager, Aaron Boone, in much the same way Jordan Montgomery dazzled Joe Girardi last spring, ultimately winning the job as the team’s fifth starter.
And two, the logic says young players need to play. Think of it this way. What sense does it make for Andujar, as an example, who apparently showed enough to make the team, to get four or five at-bats a week spelling Brandon Drury at third base, when he can regularly get 30 at-bats at Triple-A? Ditto Gleyber Torres, although Torres pretty much failed his audition, tensing up and pressing to the point where he wrote his own ticket to the minors.
Cashman Knows Best Until Someone Proves Him Wrong
You want these guys to play, and learn, and develop their skills and even other skills they don’t know they have yet. The same holds true for someone like Justus Sheffield, who will pitch at Yankee Stadium in the future, but just not today.
Sheffield needs two things, and they are the same attributes Luis Severino needed a short year ago. He needs to command his pitches in the zone, and he needs to develop an “out pitch” to put hitters away. He can do neither now, but presumably, he can learn quickly in the minors.
Chance Adams is another good decision made by Cashman. Ostensibly, the Yankees have him targeted as a reliever. While questionable, Adams has zero chance of cracking the core of relievers the Yankees currently have, Thus, the place for Adams is where he is, with the opportunity to develop as a bullpen specialist.
Everything collapses with injuries on the 25-man roster if they occur. The beauty, though, is the Yankees have mostly ready replacements who are “hot” in the sense they have been playing daily. Plus, in many cases, these same players have been seeing a level of competition at Triple-A equal to, or in many cases even better than what some major league teams will be fielding thing season.
Which means the focus of the Yankees season should be in parallel with what’s going on at Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, and in particular how Bobby Mitchell, the newly appointed manager of the Railriders replacing Al Pedrique, handles the responsibility thrust upon him.
Yankees Season Is Parallel With The Triple-A Railriders
At the moment, the “mindset” of these young talents probably rests in the doldrums of having to face bus rides and a Best Western instead of chartered planes and stays at the local Hyatt Regency with the Yankees. Mitchell and his coaching staff will need to deal with that in a positive and upbeat manner, and soon as the Railrider’s season begins on April 6.
Yankees fans, while biting at the bit to see their racehorse in action will have to wait. That’s not a bad thing and we are fortunate Brian Cashman is holding steady at the watch in developing the abundant talent the Yankees have at their disposal.
In the meantime, though, there is a season and a pennant race about to unfold. And the roster put together by Cashman, and presumably, Boone is the one giving the Yankees their best chance to accomplish the goal set in place for the 2018 Yankees. It’s not now or never, but it sure is now.
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