Archive for Greg Golson
In the past few days the Yankees have had to deal with a number of injuries. Most of them have been mild in nature, but that still causes problems for the roster. In fact, mild injuries can cause more problems than DL trips in some cases, because the player is not available and there is no one to take his place on the roster. Right now the Yankees have three players nursing injuries who won’t hit the DL, so that’s three inactive roster spots. It can make managing the lineup and bullpen a bit tricky.
The Yankees do have options, though, and will likely make a number of moves during the next few days to keep their roster up to speed. The moves will include recalling an infielder tomorrow, and then probably an outfielder early next week. They’ll need an extra OF if Marcus Thames is going to take more reps at DH. Let’s start with what they’ll do tomorrow.
Marc Carig reports that the Yankees have scheduled no tests on Robinson Cano‘s knee, so chances are he’ll just sit out a day or two. The Yanks could probably get by with just four infielders, but it’s probably advisable to have a backup. Kevin Russo makes the most sense, since he can play all infield positions and is already on the 40-man roster. I’d be very surprised if this didn’t happen tomorrow.
The Yankees currently have 13 pitchers, which is two too many. Logan and Robertson pitched last night, so they’re the most likely to go on an optional assignment. Mike wrote about demoting Robertson yesterday. Boone Logan writes about his own demotion every time he walks a batter.
The Yankees sent down Golson before today’s game, meaning that under normal circumstances he’d have to spend 10 days in the minors. With the injury to Johnson, though, the Yankees can bring him right back. If, as Carig reports, they’ll use Thames at DH, they’ll need a reserve outfielder. Golson is the best option right now.
Possible alternative: Moeller instead of Russo or Golson
Both Golson and Russo are really just emergency options. They’re nice to have around, and the Yankees have the flexibility to keep them around as insurance. They could, however, opt to give Jorge some reps at DH. That way they can get his bat into the lineup without risking his legs by playing him at catcher. That would require a third catcher, which would be Chad Moeller.
This is something I can see happening after the need for Russo expires. Once Cano is back to playing the Yanks don’t need two utility infielders, so Russo will likely head back to Scranton. That does leave a roster spot free. The Yankees could opt to recall Chad Moeller as Francisco Cervelli‘s backup and give Jorge reps against righties at DH. They could even ease him back into catching, making sure that his leg issues really are behind him.
Alternative two: Option Russo, recall Miranda
If the Yankees are prepared to let Jorge return to catching full-time, they could opt to replace Russo with a platoon partner with Thames at DH. I like this just about as little as I like carrying a third catcher. Miranda can back up Teixeira at first, and Thames can play the OF if need be, but neither presents a good option. Then again, with these injuries that doesn’t come as a surprise.
I’d probably support recalling Moeller more, because it provides the added bonus of getting Jorge’s bat into the lineup while making sure his calf is ready for the rigors of squatting for an hour and a half each night. Also, Miranda hasn’t played since May 4, so there might be something there.
Rain? That might help
There is rain in the forecast today, and while I’m not normally one to hope for a washout, it might not be the worst thing in this case. Rescheduling this afternoon’s game as a doubleheader later in the year accomplishes a few things.
- It pushes the whole rotation back a day. CC would pitch on Sunday, and then Burnett would go Monday against the Tigers. Vazquez could then go Tuesday as scheduled, followed by Hughes on Wednesday. Could Andy Pettitte pitch on Thursday? I doubt it, but there’s a non-zero chance.
- It gives Jorge and Robbie a free day. It sounds like Jorge could catch today, but giving him another day couldn’t hurt, especially if there’s no game to win that day. Cano won’t play today, so a rainout will only help there.
- It means no Joe Buck and Tim McCarver.
No one likes to see injuries, especially ones to key players. The Yankees have weathered a few trips to the infirmary this year, but they’re in an even tougher spot now. They do have options, though they’re starting to get a bit thin.
Updated 4:47 p.m. (scroll down for more on the rotation and Mariano): As the Yankees gear up for a weekend showdown with the Red Sox, the team announced a pair of complementary roster moves this afternoon. With Andy Pettitte expected to miss a start and Sergio Mitre all but officially penciled in for Tuesday, the Yankees have recalled Romulo Sanchez from AAA. To make room on the roster, the team has optioned Greg Golson back to Scranton.
Meanwhile, Jorge Posada isn’t in the lineup tonight, but neither he nor Pettitte are going on the disabled list yet. For the Yankees, then, the team is effectively struggling to make do with a 23-man roster. Until they know the extent of Posada’s and Pettitte’s injuries, they will play with a short bench and a long bullpen. Sanchez, scheduled to start tonight for Scranton, will replace Mitre as the team’s long man, and Randy Winn will be expected to be the versatile back-up outfielder in the event of a catastrophe out there. Hopefully, this roster holding pattern will clear up soon, and for what it’s worth, Posada, who says his tight calf may limit his running, says he could play tomorrow.
Going forward, this move suggests that the Yankees will send out Sergio Mitre, Javier Vazquez, Phil Hughes and CC Sabathia to pitch against Detroit next week. Pettitte wants to pitch, but the Yanks keep saying no no no, according to
Amy Winehouse Jon Heyman. Posada, who took BP today, should be back in the lineup soon, and if he’s not, then Chad Moeller will be activated. The team can’t go too long with Ramiro Peña as the emergency catcher.
Sanchez, 26, is a big guy with two cups of coffee in the majors. Listed at 6′ 5″ and 260 pounds, the right-hander made 26 appearances for the Pirates in 2007 and 2008, and he arrived on the Yanks in a trade last year for Eric Hacker. In his limited big league career, he has thrown 31.1 innings while giving up 16 ER on 14 hits and 14 walks. He has struck out 14 as well. This year for Scranton, he was 0-2 with a 6.48 ERA but impressed the Yankees during Spring Training.
According to Greg Fertel at Pending Pinstripes who has a full scouting report on Sanchez, the righty can dial his fastball up to 99 but sits in the mid-to-upper 90s. He has a good change and some decent enough breaking pitches that he has trouble keeping under control. Despite starting at AAA, the Yanks seem to view him as a bullpen option only in the big leagues, and for the weekend at least, he’ll be the team’s 25th guy on a rather inflexible roster.
Mitre to pitch Monday; Rivera available tonight
The updates for the walking wounded continue to pour in. Joe Girardi announced a few minutes ago that the team is reshuffling its rotation next week to give Andy Pettitte a few days off. Sergio Mitre will start Monday’s game against the Tigers, and Javier Vazquez will pitch on Tuesday. Pettitte, says Girardi, will likely pitch next weekend against the Twins and will avoid a trip to the DL. No word yet on why Mitre and Vazquez are getting flip-flopped. The Yankees, though, are in need of a long outing from Vazquez.
In good news, Mariano Rivera is available to pitch tonight, and if the Yanks have a late lead, Girardi will not hesitate to call upon his future Hall of Fame closer to save a win. Take that, Sports Illustrated cover jinx.
Update (6:01pm): Melancon has indeed been sent to Triple-A.
12:46pm: Via Donnie Collins, the Yankees are expected to call up outfielder Greg Golson (who is already in New York) today to replace the injured Curtis Granderson. Mark Melancon will likely be the 25-man roster casualty following Sunday’s two inning, 27-pitch outing. Golson’s call up is an unsurprising move not just because we heard it was coming over the weekend, but because the Yanks don’t have another true centerfielder on their roster beyond Brett Gardner.
The 24-year-old Golson is crazy fast and a defensive whiz, but he’s not much with the stick. In 21 Triple-A games this season, he’s hitting .253-.289-.430 with twelve strikeouts, four steals, and just three walks. He won’t be used for much more than pinch running and late-game defense.
Back in the day, a move like this would have flown under the radar. But now we have schmucks, like the guy covering MLBTR today, digging up little tidbits to satiate our transactional thirst. As MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan reports, the Yankees have sent Mitch Hilligoss to the Rangers for outfielder Greg Golson. It’s a small-time move, for sure — the Rangers DFA’d Golson last week to make room for Khalil Greene. The Yanks are the beneficiaries, trading a guy with no future on the team for a possible outfield option.
The 21st overall pick in the 2004 draft, Golson spent most of his professional career in the Phillies system. Known primarily for his speed, Golson didn’t flash much of anything else during his journey from A ball to AA. His OBP never hit even .330 until his age-22 season, in AA, and even then it sat at .333. His contact and power numbers were decent for a speedster, however, as he racked up 120 hits, 35 of which went for extra bases, over 426 at-bats in 2008. The Phillies then traded him to Texas for John Mayberry.
Golson slipped in 2009, his batting average dropping to .258, his OBP to .299, and his SLG to .334, all while in the hitter-friendly PCL. But even before then he lost the prospect luster. John Sickels extended his top 20 Rangers prospects to 24, and still Golson fell into the “others” list. Baseball America clearly left him out of their top 10, though Golson did rank as the best athlete, fastest baserunner, and best outfield arm in the organization.
For the Yanks, this represents just another low-risk move. Hilligoss, most remembered for his 38-game hitting streak in the Sally League three years ago, probably won’t amount to much, especially in the Yankees’s system. All Golson costs is one of the free 40-man roster spots, and even then it doesn’t seem like they’ll hesitate to cut him if the need arises. For now he’ll compete for a spot on the team in Spring Training, though chances are the Yankees will just stash him in AAA. It appears he was added to the 40-man roster after the 2008 season, so he’ll have options.
Credit: AP Photo/Tom Mihalek