Yankees designate Clay Rapada for assignment

Yankees finalize Opening Day roster
Opening Day Eve Open Thread

The Yankees have designated Clay Rapada for assignment to clear a spot on the 40-man roster for Lyle Overbay, the team announced. The move allowed them to finalize their 25-man roster by today’s 3pm ET deadline.

Rapada, 32, hasn’t pitched in about three weeks due to shoulder bursitis and he wasn’t particularly close to returning. He is crazy effective against left-handed batters (career .231 wOBA against), but righties do hit him hard (.453). Rapada’s a true lefty specialist and the Yankees have lefty relief depth (Juan Cedeno, Josh Spence Vidal Nuno, Francisco Rondon, Cesar Cabral when healthy), though he’s a useful piece the team doesn’t have anymore. I don’t see much of an alternative, really.

Yankees finalize Opening Day roster
Opening Day Eve Open Thread
  • forensic

    Pretty surprising, but not a huge thing as far as things go on the field. Really, he only throws about 6 innings a month, so if he misses a month or two you’re only replacing 20-30 innings over the season. Sure, it could be against tough lefties, but there are other guys in the pen who can still successfully face those guys (just not Eppley please!!!).

    • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

      The biggest negative of this move, imo, is that it means Eppley’s presence in the bullpen may not be as temporary as I had hoped.

      • forensic

        Yup, and given that he’s going to be gone for good (theoretically) and Logan’s performance is a huge question mark right now, why not take one of the lefties instead of him since it is more of a long-term move it seems.

    • forensic

      Although I wonder, other than still having his salary on the books, which is obviously turning into an issue, what’s the downside of throwing him on the 60-day DL instead and seeing what happens with the injury?

      • Travis L.

        Could they have worked out a plan with Rapada or Aardsma for that matter, that if they aren’t claimed, then they can just hang out in AAA and get healthy until its time for them to come back? Those two must know that at some point the Yankees will need more relievers, right?

        • forensic

          Sure, they could’ve tried that with Aardsma, but he was healthy and he certainly would’ve gotten a better offer with another team searching for bullpen help.

          If they really wanted to do that with Rapada, again it’s almost the same as 60-day DL’ing him (assuming he’d be out near that long), then giving him the 30 days rehab time to make their next decision.

    • jack

      romanski sleeper lefty

  • Bob Buttons

    Somewhere, Cabral is smiling.

  • Travis L.

    Roster topic…Casper Wells, Jason Donald, Mauro Gomez, Robinson Chirinos, Stephen Vogt, and Zack Cox all got DFA’d today. Any of those guys better than the replacements?

    • trr

      (sighs)…no, not really

    • Bob Buttons

      IIRC Wells is the Wells we wanted, not Vernon. He was suppose to be a power/speed guy but never learned to hit righties. Went from Det to Sea in Furbush-Fister trade.

      Donald was highly regarded like four years ago. Phi traded him and others for Lee. Haven’t really impressed outside of a SS 2011.

      Mauro Gomez is the other annoying guy out of nowhere other than Ciriaco. Might be an upgrade over Nix, but not exactly much.

      Chirinos was Jose Molina’s backup. That says it all.

      Stephen Vogt can play corner IF and maybe some OF and C. lefty hitting 27 year old. Maybe worth a flier.

      Zack Cox did okay at AA in 2011 when he was 22. Worth a look as AAA OF, but not major league ready. 62nd and 88th best prospect in baseball in ’11 and ’22 respectively, according to BA.

      • kenthadley

        yes we certainly can use some of these guys, but not on the 40 man roster quite yet….so whoever wants to play in Scranton will probably be given the opportunity.

        • Bob Buttons

          The major problem is the ones that are worth a roster spot at AAA probably wouldn’t get pass waivers.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      I’d rather have Wells than Francisco, but I think either would be DFA fodder at this point with Wells the more expensive and Boesch around.

      Gomez? Sure. I’ll even steal the lost minor of their heroes.

      Sad about Clay, but I’m never surprised when the glass slipper falls off last year’s LOOGY. Hopefully, Stairs or Cedeno are able to step up eventually. Is Spence a lefty?

  • Drew

    2 days 2 useful relievers gone. Sucks

  • Rise Up

    Should have kept Aardsma and dumped Eppley and Clay.

    Actually they should have never gotten themselves in this position but the ketchup was squeezed out of the bottle a long time ago on all of this shit.

  • sweet sassy molassy

    He held lefties to a .518 OPS last yr. He did exactly what they asked him to do.

    It’s not going to make-or-break the season, obviously, but after the crap-out LOOGY signings of the last few seasons I was hoping he’d stick around a little longer.

  • Bavarian Yankee

    not that surprising. They probably re-sign him anyway.