3 Yankees who won't make Opening Day roster, but will contribute a lot in 2023

New York Yankees Spring Training
New York Yankees Spring Training / New York Yankees/GettyImages
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Matt Krook, LHP

The only thing holding the 28-year-old Krook back from a spot on this list is the possibility that Brian Cashman, suddenly concerned with the low number of left-handers in his 'pen, summons Krook for the Opening Day roster.

Whether the moment comes now or later, rest assured that the ex-Rays prospect will have an impact on the 2023 team.

We're going to go ahead and demote him for the Opener, though, mostly because the team probably views him as a spot starter in the JP Sears mold rather than a short reliever. Now that Domingo Germán has grabbed hold of the fifth starter spot and Clarke Schmidt is more likely than not going to the 'pen to start the year, that would also require there to be someone waiting at Triple-A who can come up and eat innings at a moment's notice.

Once upon a time, that would've been Sears, Ken Waldichuk, or Hayden Wesneski. Now? It seems Krook is the leading candidate for the job, after going 10-7 with a 4.09 ERA and 155 Ks in 138.2 innings at Triple-A last year, using that sweeping slider to perfection.

Jimmy Cordero has also shined at this year's camp, and will likely have a big-league future with these Yankees. He's a reliever through and through, though, and could crack the Opening Day roster if anything else goes wrong (or on his own merits). Krook is more likely to be the last cut, but we'll see him plenty this season.