Why? The man was drafted by and developed by the organization, has spent the last 13 years in the Bronx, and is the last remaining member of the 2009 World Series team.
On top of that, he can play center field (which is extremely valuable), provides a left-handed bat, and is an influential veteran voice. Let’s also not forget such depth accompanied by familiarity will really help the Bombers deal with potential injuries or outfield rotations.
And for those of you unnecessarily worrying about Gardy affecting Clint Frazier’s development as the starting left fielder, it’s time to get a grip.
Manager Aaron Boone already said Frazier is the team’s starting left fielder whether Gardner was re-signed or not. And when he was re-signed on Friday night, Frazier was among the first players to express excitement over the move.
In no way is Gardner going to eat into Frazier’s playing time and adversely affect his status in the starting lineup.
Remember, the Yankees still have to clear two spots on the 40-man roster for Gardner and reliever Justin Wilson. If we were to bet, that means Greg Allen will be DFA’ed, which would create space in the outfield, leaving Gardy, Frazier, Aaron Judge, Aaron Hicks and Mike Tauchman as the likely outfielders.
You mean to tell us that you wouldn’t want Gardner as insurance after witnessing a mini regression from Tauchman in 2020 in addition to the incessant injury issues with Judge and Hicks? We certainly hope those situations turn themselves around, but there’s no telling what’ll happen.
And Gardner “playing a lot” shouldn’t be a concern at all. Guys will need days off. Some will hit the injured list. Boone will play others based on pitching matchups. There are plenty of reps to go around without affecting anyone’s growth/influence in the lineup.
Boone speaking to the media about everything on Saturday should’ve cleared all of this up for anyone who was skeptical about the move. In the end, adding another good player who has pinstripes in his DNA is hardly a bad decision.
Relax. Enjoy the ride. 2021 is going to be a fun one.