While everyone was partying on July 4 and not caring about a single thing the New York Yankees were doing after yet another disgraceful week of baseball, the organization slipped in a fairly notable roster move.
Tyler Wade was optioned to Triple-A after the second game of the doubleheader against the New York Mets, which didn’t exactly surprise anyone, but it certainly left many asking questions about what’s to come.
Wade’s largely been used as a defensive replacement and the last time he saw the field came on June 30 in the team’s gut-wrenching loss to the Los Angeles Angels. Most fans have been calling for a change since Wade is far and away the worst player on the roster. The Yankees have had plenty of opportunities to upgrade.
It’s just interesting they chose now, when Wade was filling in admirably as an outfielder and actually being somewhat of a difference-maker on the base paths. Leave it to the Yankees to make a head-scratching decision two years too late.
What does Tyler Wade being optioned mean for the Yankees roster?
Wade’s demotion was likely the “official” corresponding move for the activation of Wandy Peralta, who re-joined the team on Sunday as their 27th man. His return from the injured list was going to cost someone else’s job.
But there’s more to it, namely the most recent trade Brian Cashman made in an attempt to improve a weakened area of the roster.
It’s now clear Tim Locastro will be here for the long haul, barring an injury or unforeseen circumstance in which he loses his speed and ability to play defense.
Locastro is a natural outfielder and one of the fastest players in MLB. His experience in the bigs also runs laps around Wade, who’s been unable to catch on ever since debuting in 2017. Locastro’s 2019 and 2020 performances leave reason to believe he could be a contributing player with specific skill sets on a contending roster. Ha, we know the Yankees aren’t contenders, but they could be … at some point … soon?
The Bombers already have so many players out of position (Miguel Andújar in left field, Clint Frazier on defense in general, DJ LeMahieu bouncing around the infield, Aaron Judge in center field) and really can’t continue the trend. Wade in the outfield was a pleasant surprise, but he’s a middle infielder. Speaking of which …
You’re going to continue see more of Rougned Odor. The Yankees have obviously determined having a slugging backup second baseman is more important than a capable sub for Gleyber Torres at shortstop. Can you blame them? Nobody saw Torres’ regression upending the roster. He just needs to play through this until there’s some sort of renaissance.
LeMahieu will more than likely be moved off of second base, whether it’s to fill in at first or third later in games when the team needs a pinch runner or someone needs rest, and Odor’s presence allows them to plug in a second baseman who brings much-needed energy and power from the left side of the plate.
It’s not ideal, but at the very least, the Wade demotion can tell us a handful of stories about the roster moving forward.