Shortly before the New York Yankees kicked off their three-game series with the Tampa Bay Rays last Friday, fans were provided with some information that very much interested them. And it came from Yankees play-by-play man Michael Kay.
On The Michael Kay show, he revealed that a "high-ranking person" in the organization said "don't be surprised" if Jasson Dominguez makes it to the big leagues this season. No timeline was specified, but the timing of this was perhaps telling.
The Yankees outfield is in shambles thanks to injuries. Aaron Judge is returning, but we just went a week with a roving cast of Aaron Hicks, Oswaldo Cabrera, Isiah Kiner-Falefa and Jake Bauers filling in around Harrison Bader. Injuries to Judge, Bader and Giancarlo Stanton put this team in the worst position possible, and even when Judge is back, it's still going to be a problem.
Cabrera, Hicks and IKF have been terrible offensively. And the best defender of that bunch is Cabrera. Bauers (somehow) might have the most promising bat of this motley crew, but his fielding has been sketchy in his five games with the Bombers.
That's why we're wondering if the Yankees strategically dropping this Dominguez speculation is purely out of desperation, especially given how many fans wanted to see him crack the Opening Day roster out of spring training.
Are the Yankees really going to promote Jasson Dominguez in 2023?
We've previously surmised Dominguez might be up with the team in September when rosters expand, but that was assuming he progressed nicely through Double-A and Triple-A. Nobody expected the Yankees to be more aggressive than that.
So when you look at the timing of this tidbit combined with Dominguez's current performance, nothing really aligns. He's hitting .169 with a .366 slugging percentage and 24 strikeouts in 97 plate appearances. His 3 homers, 11 RBI, 10 stolen bases and .381 on-base percentage are promising, but this is a far cry from his performance with the team this past spring.
Based on how the Yankees handle their prospect promotions internally, there's absolutely no way fans see Dominguez anytime soon unless he does a 180 over the next month or so. At this point, it's more likely someone like Elijah Dunham or Everson Pereira gets the bump, especially if Dominguez stumbles majorly in more than one area.
And it won't come soon enough. The Yankees need reinforcements now. Dominguez has logged just 28 underwhelming games at Double-A. To even suggest this possibility right now is yet another PR failure on the Yankees' part, regardless of their intention.
In theory, a star prospect like Dominguez joining this roster would be awesome ... only if he's ready. Right now, he's clearly not, and the Yankees can't use spring training as hard evidence that he is. Or, you know, they could take the gamble like the Red Sox did with Enmanuel Valdez, who was hitting .184 at Triple-A and then immediately started hitting .324 in the bigs. But you know that would never work out for them.