2. Jonathan Loaisiga
Speaking of players who have had ample time to prove their worth, Jonathan Loaisiga is another one. Look, it’s not easy in New York. The expectations are higher and the Yankees hope for more out of their players.
Though Loaisiga has gradually improved ever since debuting in 2018, he’s certainly not what you’d call reliable and the Yankees brought in a bunch of new relievers this offseason. Darren O’Day and Justin Wilson will do their best to replace Adam Ottavino and Tommy Kahnle while veterans Nick Goody and Kyle Barraclough (non-roster invites) will try to make an impression. And don’t forget about prospect Addison Russ!
All we’re saying is that there will be a good old fashioned competition for the remaining bullpen spots that Aaron Boone feels need fortification. Where does Loaisiga’s value lie? Is he a starter or a reliever? He has good stuff, but when will he be able to put it all together?
The Yankees mentioned potentially using Johnny Lasagna as a Swiss Army option — he can start games, he can pitch multiple innings in relief, he can come in for a few high-leverage outs — but that’s not an easy job to fill if you’re still trying to “figure it out.”
The 26-year-old could very well lose his job in the ‘pen if the aforementioned guys manage to give Boone a reason to act boldly. Plus, Loaisiga has one option remaining, so the Yankees can stash him at Triple-A for at least the beginning of the season if they think they can do better.