Yankees prospects: Is it time to give Rob Refsnyder a chance?

Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

Brian Roberts has not played well, and Rob Refsnyder has been dominating the minor leagues. Is it time to call him up?

Brian Roberts has played in 70 games for the Yankees so far this year. Last season, he played in 77 for the Orioles. He has not played in more games than that since 2009. Yet the Yankees saw fit to sign him over the offseason and gamble that he could a) stay healthy and b) return to the player that he was before all of the injuries. Well, we're almost at the halfway point in the season, and while he's been mostly healthy, he has been far from an offensive bright spot in the lineup. Meanwhile, second baseman Rob Refsnyder has been dominating in the minor leagues. How long are we going to have to suffer through with Roberts before Refsnyder finally gets called up?

Although he hasn't been the worst Yankee this season, Roberts has struggled quite a bit. He's batting .233/.309/.341 with an wRC+ of 84. His fWAR is 0.1. It's very hard to find any positives about him, other than the fact that he's only signed to a $2M, 1 year contract. Despite these struggles, he's played in the third most games of all the position players. That's including the week that he missed with back pain earlier in the season. The fact that they continue to roll Roberts out to second base every day is becoming increasingly frustrating, especially because there are not a lack of players on the team who can play second base. Kelly Johnson's actual position is second base, and he's played a grand total of 2 innings at 2B this season. Not that he's having a particularly great season either (.229/.303/.408 with a wRC+ of 97 and 6 HRs), but he's not Roberts. Then again, now that Yangervis Solarte has dropped down to earth, Johnson has to cover third base.

The best solution to the Roberts problem is to call up Refsnyder. First of all, he is an actual second baseman, so they likely wouldn't lose anything defensively. He's also been having an amazing season. Refsnyder begun the year in Double-A, where he hit .342/.385/.548 with 6 HR and 30 RBI through 60 games. Since being promoted to Triple-A, he's batting .356/.479/.610 with 3 HR and a .419 BABIP. At this point, there would be absolutely nothing to lose by calling him up. Even if he regressed significantly, he'd probably still be better than Roberts, or at least the same. I would much rather see what Refsnyder can do than continue to see if Roberts can get anything going.

Do you think Refsnyder will break into the majors this season or are we stuck with Roberts? If he does, will the Yankees cut Roberts and just eat the contract?

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