Yankees Clint Frazier Is Quietly Making A Case For Left Field


It’s hard to think of the Yankees Clint Frazier doing anything quietly. But, amongst all the loud home runs, Frazier may be playing the best ball of any prospect. Does this mean the Yankees will trade Brett Gardner in March?

What an exciting Spring Training the Yankees are having. Aaron Judge might be figuring it out and has already hit a home run into (Spring Training) legend. Greg Bird has two dingers and at least 12 total bases, depending on when you read this. Gary Sanchez has one homer and reminded the world: You don’t run on number 24. I’m sorry, let me make that more clear: YOU DON’T RUN ON NUMBER TWENTY-FOUR!

But the Yankees youngster who might be playing the best is Clint Frazier. He has not made a big noise like hitting a monster home run and, yes, he has only seven at-bats, but it is early for everyone. His very early line, however, is very impressive. He’s batting .571 with a 1.714 OPS. He has four hits and four RBI’s. And of course, he has also scored twice. He is driving the offense more than any other player.

On the downside, he did make a base-running mistake in his first (or second) game. He failed to pick up the sign from third and might have cost his team one or more runs. But a couple of days later he turned a single into a double with an aggressive, heads-up approach.

We also have to judge him on his mental and emotional ability to play when the games count. Miguel Andujar and Gleyber Torres, for instance, each have two errors. They are getting their first taste of the big leagues, and it is a bit too sweet for them to handle. The sugar high is making them jumpy.

Gardy Might Have to Leave the Yardy

Not Frazier. He looks intense in the batter’s box; he looks like the pitcher just insulted his mom. And it sounds like he belongs. His attitude, approach, and forearms remind me of Matt Holliday. Now that is a magnificent thing. I already frigging love that guy and the only thing better than having one Matt Holliday in the lineup would be to have two. Any team is better off with as many strong competitors as it can get.

More from Yanks Go Yard

And it’s something we have been missing in left field. We all love Brett Gardner, and he does play the game hard. But there is an obvious tentativeness to his game. Just read this article from 2010

Or this one from 2015:

Or how about this article…okay, just Google Brett Gardner Base Stealing and you will have plenty to read. The common thread is that Joe Girardi and the Yankees have wanted Gardy to be much more proactive in making his moves. They apparently felt the team would be better off with a more aggressive approach.

The Yankees Future is Now

The 2017 Yankees are in the middle of rebuilding. Brett Gardner is the past and, if he continues to hit and play both smart and aggressive, Clint Frazier is the future. And I think the Yankees should follow their advice and be more proactive in making this move. The team will be better off with a more aggressive approach to rebuilding.

Related Story: What do the Yankees Really Have in Miguel Andujar?

Clint Frazier might not get another hit in Yankees camp. He might still show he needs to start the year in Pennsylvania. But if he does keep playing the way he is—as a smart, aggressive offensive engine—he is going to force the Yankees to bring this Baby Bomber to the Bronx.

If that means the end of Brett Gardner in pinstripes, Yankees fans will remember him fondly. And I hope we get to the remembering phase sooner rather than later.