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The 10 most random Yankees from the last 10 seasons

Jeter, Rivera, Rodriguez, Judge, and Torres are just a few of the famous names to have worn pinstripes in the last decade. Then, there’s these guys.

Kansas City Royals v New York Yankees Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images

With the decade winding down, it’s a chance for us to look back at the past ten years of Yankees baseball. In most such exercises, it’s going to be stuff about the good and notable things that have happened.

However, because 162 is a whole lot of games to play per season, there have also been countless completely forgettable things that have happened, and a lot of random players to have taken the field in pinstripes. With that in mind, let’s go back through the last ten years by highlighting one “oh yeah, him” person from every season.

2010: Austin Kearns

The Yankees made three notable deals at the 2010 trade deadline. The headliner was the acquisition of Lance Berkman. The one that ended up being the best was picking up reliever Kerry Wood. There was also the Austin Kearns trade.

The outfielder was in his ninth season when the Yankees got Kearns from the Indians for a player to be named later, which would eventually be pitcher Zach McAllister. He played 36 mostly uninspiring games, left at the end of the season, and just signed with Cleveland again the next season. The only notable thing about his tenure was being the original use of John Sterling’s “Austin powers one” home run call.

2011: Gustavo Molina

Yes, Gustavo Molina is a catcher. No, he’s not one of those Molinas.

With Francisco Cervelli injured to start the 2011 season, this Molina was tabbed to be Russell Martin’s backup. His hitting numbers prior to that hadn’t exactly been great, even for someone who was ostensibly a third-string catcher. In his major league career before going to the Yankees, he had a -19 OPS+. He ended up playing three games for the Yankees, going 1-6. That raised his career OPS+ to -13, which is where it still stands today. He most recently played in the Venezuelan Winter League last year, where he hit .175/.186/.193.

2012: Darnell McDonald

McDonald was a bit of a journeyman when the Yankees picked him up off waivers from the Red Sox in July 2012. A thing you may remember about him was that he had dreadlocks. In accordance with the Yankees’ hair policy, he had to shave them off, and, well...

He lasted just a couple games with the Yankees, meaning he got rid of his dreadlocks for four at-bats.

2013: Travis Ishikawa

The 2013 season was a whole year of randoms, but there is one clear outlier. Here is a timeline of Ishikawa’s Yankee career.

  • July 7, 2013: Acquired off waivers
  • July 8, 2013: Gets the start at first base, strikes out twice, gets pinch-hit for
  • July 11, 2013: Designated for assignment
  • July 13, 2013: Clears waivers, elects free agency

Even more weird than that week was that just over a year later, Ishikawa hit a pennant-winning home run for the Giants, and played six games in their 2014 World Series win.

2014: Eury Perez

While not quite as many as 2013, there are also several “who?” people on the 2014 roster. Perez stands out for one reason.

On September 26, 2014, the Yankees played the Red Sox in Boston. It was the night after Derek Jeter’s walk-off in his last game in the Bronx. Between the fact that it was a meaningless game and the, um, “festivities” that likely occurred the previous night, the Yankees ran out arguably one of the worst lineups in team history.

If you look through the replies to that tweet, Perez is the only one who no one seems to know existed.

2015: Sergio Santos

In the early/mid-2000s, Santos was a top-100 prospect according to some outlets. He was not that by the time he ended up of the Yankees in 2015. He threw three innings in two games with them and hasn’t played in the majors since. The Yankees picking him up is the last transaction listed on his Baseball Reference page, so I choose to believe that means he is still part of the organization on a technicality and no one is aware of it.

2016: Chris Parmelee

Dealing with some injuries, the Yankees called up the former Twin and Oriole who had signed a minor league free agent deal in the previous offseason. He then proceeded to hit like Babe Ruth upon getting the call.

Parmelee went 4-8 with two home runs, a double, and four RBI in four games before getting hurt himself. He hasn’t played in the majors since, meaning his OPS+ for his most recent season in the bigs is 374.

2017: Erik Kratz

This year has to be none other than Yankees all-time batting average leader Erik Kratz. The catcher was a September call-up, played in four games, and went 2-2. The next season he went on to play for the Brewers, where he put up a 1.375 OPS in the NLDS against the Rockies. He rejoined the Yankees organization in 2019, where he helped Scranton/Wilkes-Barre make the International League playoffs.

2018: A.J. Cole

Noted relief ace A.J. Cole joined the Yankees in April 2018. In his second game, he was called on after Aroldis Chapman had walked the bases loaded in a tie game against Oakland. Given his career to that point, you would have expected things go south soon after. Instead. he got a strikeout and a double play. He threw another scoreless inning and the Yankees eventually won. Cole then put up a 1.02 ERA in his next 11 games, leading some to wonder if he could be a genuinely useful bullpen option. An 8.82 ERA in his next 15 appearances answered that question.

2019: Joe Mantiply

Mantiply had had two previous stints in the Yankees organization without appearing in a game when the Yankees picked him up in August. He finally appeared in a game on August 12th and allowed three runs in three innings.

There are plenty of others that I could’ve gone with in pretty much every year. Who have been your favorite randoms from the past 10 years?