Throughout Spring Training we’ll be taking a look at who’s performing well (hot) and who isn’t (not). Obviously all spring stats should be taken with a grain of salt. However, for certain players competing for roster spots, it can be make or break.
Now that we’ve played a full week’s worth of games, let’s take a look at who’s hot and who’s not.
Matt Holliday – 11AB, 5H, 1HR, .455AVG – Matt Holliday has had no trouble adjusting to the DH role with the Yankees this Spring Training. What’s more, the Yankees put Holliday’s locker near Aaron Judge‘s for him to help act as a mentor. So far so good because…
Aaron Judge – 14AB, 6H, 1HR, 3RBI, .429AVG – Judge probably had the most to prove as a hitter this spring after a strikeout riddled 2016 MLB debut. In the early going, it’s looking like the minor adjustments he made have been paying off. The most promising of his numbers so far is that he’s struck out just twice in 14 at-bats.
Greg Bird – 12AB, 5H, 3HR, .417AVG – If Judge had the most to prove then Bird was a close second. After a year of recovery, Bird has readjusted to live action better than the Yankees could have hoped. His power, which was the biggest concern coming out of shoulder surgery, has remained present as he leads the team with 3 home runs.
The starters – Prior to yesterday’s game, Yankees starters had given up just one run. And even then, Adam Warren only gave up that run in three innings of work, which is fine. The starting competition thus far has been tight, which is exactly what you hope to see in a spring training battle. Luis Severino, who gave up his first two runs yesterday off a Jose Bautista home run, also seems to be pleasing the coaching staff. He’s been using his changeup much more often, something critical to his success, and has struck out five batters in just 4.1 innings of work.
Chase Headley – 11AB, 2H, .182AVG – Stat lines should be less concerning for veterans but Headley is important to keep an eye on considering his horrendous 2016 start. His defense on the other hand, has looked good in the early goings.
Chris Carter – 11AB, 2H, 1HR, 5SO, .182AVG – Perhaps we shouldn’t have expected any different but Carter has already struck out five times in just 14 plate appearances. He has hit a HR and walked three times, further perpetuating his reputation as a three-outcome player.
Aaron Hicks – 12AB, 2H, .167 AVG – Looking like the usual suspects thus far eh? Hicks is off to a slow start, which is unfortunate for him as he’s competing with a red-hot Judge.
Didi Gregorius – 5AB, 1HR, .200AVG – Didi smacked a home run at the start of spring training and has been otherwise quiet since. There shouldn’t be much need for concern here as he has just five at-bats. Let’s hope he doesn’t get hurt in the World Baseball Classic.