Prior to Wednesday nights game up in Toronto, Yankees utility-man prospect Rob Refsnyder was spotted fielding some grounders over at first base.
Also, according to Brendan Kuty of NJ Advanced Media, the 25-year old prospect wasn’t just practicing over at first for the heck of it. In fact, Refsnyder actually feels confident enough to man the three corner.
"“I feel comfortable enough to try it in a game and see how it goes,” he told Kuty."
The Yankees lost their original backup first baseman, Dustin Ackley, earlier in the week when he suffered a season-ending shoulder injury.
Keep in mind that with top first base prospect Gregory Bird on the shelf, the next best option to back up Mark Teixeira after Dustin Ackley is either Nick Swisher (currently batting .250 with 4 HRs and 15 RBI down in Scranton) or platooning Brian McCann and Austin Romine at first when they aren’t behind… so maybe Refsnyder at first isn’t such a bad idea after all.
Though Refsnyder has yet to log a single game at first base, learning a new position isn’t out of the ordinary for him. He was drafted as a right fielder out of the University of Arizona before the Yankees converted him into a second baseman. Over the spring, he started taking some reps at third base, and he’s spent some time in the corner outfield in the majors and minors so far this year.
Whether or not Refsnyder is realistically a possibility at first, the fact of the matter is his bat belongs in the Yankees lineup, as he evidently displayed on Thursday night during the Yankees make-up victory in Mo’ Town.
If it means getting his bat into the lineup more often, the Yankees should absolutely give Refsnyder the opportunity to spell Mark Teixeira when he needs a days rest… or better yet, maybe Refsnyder should just replace the .185 hitting Teixeira indefinitely.