Wednesday was a busy day in Yankee camp as Brendan Ryan went down with a leg injury and the Yankees acquired nfielder Gregorio Petit only hours later. Ryan was diagnosed with a Grade 2 calf strain, which could keep him out of action for the month of April, meaning that a spot just opened up for someone to make the Opening Day roster. That someone could have been Jose Pirela, but since he's out with a concussion, the Yankees will need to find someone new. Since they just acquired him, it would make sense that Petit is the favorite to make the team, but just because this might be the most likely road the Yankees take, that doesn't mean it's the only one available to them. The addition of Petit offers them three options on how to go about filling out that final spot:
Option 1: Gregorio Petit makes the team with Nick Noonan and Rob Refsnyder being sent to Triple-A.
If they decide to put Petit on the active roster, it's because they decided to go with the veteran option over youth and valued someone with experience coming off the bench. By sending Refsnyder down, they prove how unimpressed they were by the prospect's showing in the field and would rather him get regular reps in Scranton than sit on the bench in the majors. Noonan originally seemed like the favorite to make the team after Ryan went down, but as a right-handed hitter on a lefty-heavy team, Petit could get the nod.
Option 2: Nick Noonan replaces Brendan Ryan, Gregorio Petit replaces Noonan in Triple-A, Refsnyder sent to Triple-A.
If the Yankees go with Noonan, it's because, as a 25-year-old former first-round pick, they might think he has some slight upside over Petit. Both can play second, third, and short, but Petit played in Triple-A for four straight seasons in between MLB jobs for a reason. In this scenario, the Yankees still don't trust Refsnyder's defense, but this time he'll at least have a veteran double play partner to help him out a bit.
Option 3: Rob Refsnyder makes the team, Nick Noonan and Gregorio Petit are the new double play team in Scranton.
The most unlikely option of the three, considering how shaky Ref's been in the field this spring and by the fact that he'll be a mere bench player. Judging by comments made by Joe Girardi since the injury, it seems that Refsnyder could be seriously considered as an MLB option with the hopes that his bat will help the team now and his defense will get better with time. That would mean that both Noonan and Petit will play in Scranton with one at shortstop and the other at second base.
Whoever the Yankees decided to take North with the team, it will only be a temporary position until Jose Pirela is ready or Brendan Ryan returns. If they expect Brendan Ryan back by May, then whoever makes the team now will be sent packing by then. With Ivan Nova eligible to be placed on the 60-day disabled list, Rob Refsnyder could be added to the 40-man roster, but it would also mean that they start his service time clock. Would the Yankees be willing to do that for a temporary bench role? Petit and Noonan are much more disposable for these purposes, but neither will likely be as helpful as Pirela, or even Ryan himself, might be.