Yankees: Justus Sheffield Among The First Eleven Players Cut


The Yankees Spring Training camp is undergoing a massive transplant of players to their assignments for the 2017 season. The first wave occurred on Sunday.

The Yankees, following their loss to the Braves on Sunday,  made the first of what is traditionally a long and painful process of cuts that will pare their roster down to the 25 players who will open the season against Tampa Bay on April 2.

ESPN’s Transaction Wire  for the New York Yankees looks like this today:

March     12, 2017 Reassigned LHPs Daniel Camarena, Joe Mantiply, James Reeves, Evan Rutckyj and Justus Sheffield; Cs Kellin Deglan, Jorge Saez and Francisco Diaz; and RHPs J.P. Feyereisen, Brady Lail and Nick Rumbelow to their minor league camp.

One by one, each player gets the proverbial “tap on the shoulder” to report to  Joe Girardi‘s office where the executioner is waiting. It’s not quite like that, of course, but it’s been known for some players to spend an awful lot of time hiding in bathroom stalls from this point on in Spring Training. The team has yet to decide on specific minor league assignments for each player.

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Of note in the lot are Justus Sheffield, who has shined in two spring appearances with an ERA of 2.45, and Joe Mantiply, who had an outside chance of making the squad filling one of two bullpen openings.

Mantiply has had a bumpy ride with the Yankees over the past three months. He was first signed by the team on November 8, 2016, only to be designated for assignment on November 19. He was then released on November 28, but resigned to a minor league deal on December 7, bringing him full circle to where he finds himself today.

Sheffield is a prime blue chip stock in the Yankees organization. He reminds of  Johan Santana  both in stature and makeup. Not surprisingly, Girardi’s  scouting report  on Sheffield is glowing:

"Girardi’s take on Sheffield:“Really like what we see. Really good movement on his fastball. Changeup is good. Slider is at times really, really good. It’s something that probably needs to become more consistent with him. Tremendous athlete. Tremendous worker. Really good focus. Pretty exciting prospect.”"

This leaves the Yankees with 56 players still in camp.

On Monday, the Yankees travel to face Tampa Bay in a 1:05 PM start, followed by a night contest with the Phillies on Tuesday that will be televised by YES.