The Yankees took another step toward cementing their 2021 roster on Wednesday afternoon. After falling to the Blue Jays, 5-0, the team announced that four more players would no longer be part of the Opening Day plans. Unlike last week’s moves, which were focused on 40-man roster players like Mike Ford, this decision only affected four non-roster invitees.
Relievers Kyle Barraclough and Asher Wojciechowski were demoted to the minor league camp, as well as outfielders Ryan LaMarre and Sócrates Brito. The latter position players were always going to wind up in the minors unless something went seriously wrong in spring training, but Barraclough and Wojciechowski both had an outside shot at a bullpen spot. Sure, it was a long shot, but it was a shot nonetheless.
The 30-year-old Barraclough was a reliable right-hander for the Marlins from 2015-18, posting a 3.21 ERA and 3.45 FIP across 227 games before seeing shaky results with the Nationals in 2019. He pitched better down the stretch that year with the Giants, but didn’t appear in 2020 after being cut from Padres summer camp. Barraclough posted a 5.40 ERA in seven games this spring, walking over a batter per inning. That’s not going to win much support.
Wojciechowski, meanwhile, was a somewhat-familiar name to Yankees fans, and not just because it’s an unavoidable last name for those who also follow the NBA. This Wojciechowski pitched in the Orioles’ rotation during the last two seasons and was a popular punching bag for the Yankees’ bats. He also didn’t fare well in camp this year, and hasn’t pitched since departing a game on March 21st with a lat injury.
The Yankees might issue some more spring roster news later today or early tomorrow, as the most prominent non-roster invitee, Jay Bruce, has a March 25th opt-out. If general manager Brian Cashman feels comfortable with Mike Tauchman or even possibly Derek Dietrich, he might let Bruce walk away. We’ll keep you posted.
Here are the non-roster invitees who are still around:
- C Rob Brantly
- C Robinson Chirinos (out 4-6 weeks)
- INF Derek Dietrich
- INF Andrew Velazquez
- OF Greg Allen
- OF Jay Bruce
- RHP Jhoulys Chacín
- LHP Nestor Cortes Jr.
- RHP Luis García
- RHP Nick Goody
- LHP Lucas Luetge
- LHP Tyler Lyons