Recapping Thursday , Position Battles and A Look At Former RailRiders
It’s hard to believe Opening Day is less than 30 days away, but with the excitement of spring and Grapefruit League action now in full swing, the general perception is that the season isn’t too far down the road. With nearly four weeks until the season opener against Syracuse (Washington), it’s still hard to predict exactly what the RailRiders’ 25-man roster will look like for the club’s first road trip. So, with that said, let’s get you caught up on some of the latest news and notes from around the Yankees’ camp.
Thursday in the bay area proved troublesome as teams attempted to fight through the dreary and showery conditions that paved their way through the Gulf Coast. Five teams eventually cancelled play, while a handful of others waited for the Florida rain to pass. In big league camp, the Yankees traveled to Bright House Networks Field for a date with the Philadelphia Phillies. For a complete wrap-up and box score of yesterday’s action, click HERE. If you want a more in-depth look at guys that are projected to start the season in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, Donnie Collins always does a fantastic job churning out information. You can find that info HERE.
One of the marquee position battles in camp is who will eventually serve as the back-up to the Yankees’ primary backstop, Brian McCann. Three principal names battling for the final catcher’s spot are Francisco Cervelli, Austin Romine and John Ryan Murphy. As Rant Sports kindly points out, Cervelli, as it stands today, is more inclined to claim a roster spot on the big league club based on his production this spring (HERE). With the continued development of high-level prospect, Gary Sanchez, the Yankees may look to deal from their plethora of talent behind the dish to provide assistance elsewhere as the New York Post points out HERE.
Another interesting battle taking place is what the Yanks outfield situation will look like when the club breaks camp for Opening Day. New York spent big this season acquiring marquee names in Jacoby Ellsbury in a free-agent signing from the Boston Red Sox, Carlos Beltran from the Cardinals and extending Brett Gardner. How does that affect guys within the organization? Zoilo Almonte, after spending eight seasons in the minor leagues, finally got his chance to contribute with the parent club last year. Almonte appeared in 34 games for New York and hit to slash line of .300/.364/.400. Doug Williams of YES put together a nice piece on Almonte analyzing his strengths and weakness. You can access that information HERE.
It’s always fun to take a glance at the guys in camp, but sometimes it’s more enjoyable to see where guys who have worn the SWB pinstripes in the past ended up in the baseball agate, commonly referred to as the transactions report. Today we take a glimpse at Brett Marshall who started 25 games in 2013 for the RailRiders while pitching to the tune of a 7-10 record and 5.13 ERA. Marshall, a 2008 sixth-round selection by the Yankees, entered 2013 ranked as the No. 16 overall prospect in the Yankees organization by some very smart individuals over at MLB.com. For a complete look at his minor league history within the Yankees’ organization, jet on over to Milb.com, you can click HERE for you convenience.
Marshall was designated for assignment by the big league club on Dec. 19, 2013 in order to make room for the recently signed slugger, Beltran. The following week, the Cubs claimed Marshall on Dec. 23 before eventually releasing the righty 51 days later to open up roster space for Cubs’ pitcher, Jason Hammel, before being acquired by the Cincinnati Reds on Feb. 12. George Nunnelly of Lousiville has a nice recap of the chaotic time frame HERE.
The agate can be a scary thing for many players, but it looks like Marshall is getting a legitimate shot in Arizona to make an impression on the Reds’ front office. To check out the former Yankees’ farmhand production thus far this spring click HERE.
That does it for today; make sure to check out what’s on deck this weekend by taking a look Grapefruit League schedule HERE. Minor league games don’t open up until March 14, but here’s a quick glace at the schedule courtesy of Mr. Collins HERE. Opening Day is just around the corner at PNC Field and we couldn’t be more excited about it. Make sure to get your ticket packages today by visiting our website SWBRailRiders.com. All Aboard!