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Around the Empire: Yankees news - 5/20/17

David Ortiz blames Yankees for 2009 PED story; Rob Thomson manages in Joe Girardi’s absence; Revisiting the 2016 trade deadline; Mike Ford conquers the baseball universe

MLB: Boston Red Sox at New York Yankees Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Around the Empire

FanRag Sports | Ryan Posner - One of the nicer parts of the 2017 season is that David Ortiz is retired. He can’t torment the Bombers anymore, at least not in Boston’s lineup. He can still irritate Yankees fans, however, as he demonstrated on Friday. Big Papi claimed that the New York Times’ story connecting him to performance enhancing drugs stemmed from too many Yankees being caught. That’s a new one, yet I’m somehow not surprised. Even in retirement Ortiz is getting on fans’ nerves.

New York Post | Joel Sherman - Last summer, the Yankees sold Aroldis Chapman and Andrew Miller at the trade deadline. They received a coup in return - including top prospects Gleyber Torres and Clint Frazier - but could they have landed a better deal? Sherman speculates that the Yankees could have asked for Ian Happ and Bradley Zimmer, who both recently made their big league debuts. While you can’t go wrong with either, give me Torres and Frazier any day of the week.

New York Daily News | Mike Mazzeo - Joe Girardi wasn’t at Tropicana Field last night. Bench coach Rob Thomson served as acting manager, and for good reason, too. Girardi’s daughter Serena graduated from high school. While Thomson made a questionable move in the ninth inning by not pinch hitting for Austin Romine, you can’t be mad about missing a game for a graduation. Congratulations all around!

New York Post | Mark W. Sanchez - The Yankees have one of the best farm systems in baseball. That’s in no small part due to the hitting talents of first baseman Mike Ford. Sanchez thinks that the undrafted free agent could force his way into the big league picture if the incumbents continue to struggle. I don’t think that’s exactly realistic, however. He’s clearly ticketed as the center piece in a trade for an ace. Seriously, though, Ford’s having a nice little season so far. Let’s not get carried away, however. Tyler Austin’s on the mend, and he can provide help at the position if needed.