Opening Day is a matter of days away, which means the Yankees must continue to cull their roster. Today, the team announced another series of cuts; Clint Frazier was optioned to Triple-A, while pitchers Rex Brothers, Danny Coulombe, Phillip Diehl, and Drew Hutchison were re-assigned to minor league camp.
This concludes what was a hopeful but ultimately frustrating spring training for Frazier. He showed flashes of his evident talents, and encouragingly looked healthy throughout, but managed only a .130/.208/.217 slash line in 53 plate appearances. It’s no surprise that the Yankees sent him down after that performance, but the most important thing for Frazier at this moment is probably his health. If he can continue to stay on the field, he’ll surely be a player to watch in minors in the early-going.
Elsewhere, none of the pitchers the Yankees re-assigned ever had much shot of making the team. Brothers and Hutchison were among the bigger names invited to camp, with Brothers having compiled a solid seven-year career as a reliever, and Hutchison once having profiled as a top Blue Jays prospect. Brothers didn’t allow a run in 5.2 spring innings but walked eight, while Hutchison allowed four runs in 8.1 innings in camp.
Diehl had a fairly impressive spring, and Brock wrote up the former 27th-round pick earlier this month. A 24-year-old left-handed reliever, Diehl has put up numbers at every stop in the minors, and his 4.50 ERA this spring belied his 15.3 K/9 rate. He’ll be an intriguing lower-profile prospect to keep an eye on this season.
The Yankees Opening Day roster is coming into focus, with only a handful of cuts remaining between now and next week. Soon, we’ll have a final roster, and actual, meaningful baseball.