Yankees: Jay Bruce continues to force Opening Day roster case with homer vs Pirates


The New York Yankees have heated ongoing position battles during spring training.

There’s a reason they extended non-roster invites to Jay Bruce and Derek Dietrich — two versatile veterans and left-handed power bats. They’re serious about making this roster as flawless as possible.

This would likely mean Mike Tauchman or Tyler Wade will end up getting squeezed off the Opening Day roster, but there’s plenty of time before any such decision is even close to being made.

Nonetheless, Bruce is forcing the issue early. He’s 4-for-6 this spring and just homered on Saturday against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

That’s exactly the kind of lefty pop the Yankees are looking for … especially one that can play the corner outfield spots and first base if need be. A veteran presence who has some versatility on defense and balances out a righty-heavy lineup?

Seems too good to be true.

Jay Bruce is forcing an Opening Day roster case for the Yankees.

There are other factors that go into this, however. The Yankees can’t part with Wade unless they’re fully comfortable with Gio Urshela being able to shift over to shortstop and eat up some innings on days where Gleyber Torres needs rest (or, heaven forbid, if he gets injured).

Either that, or the team finds a trade partner for Tauchman, because there’s next to no chance they release him given the fact he’s under club control at a team-friendly price for quite some time.

In short, Bruce, if he continues on this trajectory, is going to present the Yankees with what we call a “good problem.”

The more veterans, the more quality at-bats, the more experience, the better. Too many times have the Yankees fallen short because of guys failing to deliver in timely situations. Too many times have we seen this roster over the last few years lack that influential veteran voice. Why not add another to improve morale?

Bruce is indeed making a statement and he could convince the Yankees to take him on board for April 1 and beyond.