New York Yankees To Test Miguel Andujar At First Base

New York Yankees, Miguel Andujar

The New York Yankees are seeking ways to improve the versatility of their players, as head coach Aaron Boone has begun to experiment with different ways to expand the skill-sets of specific athletes on the roster.

One of the players he mentioned that could move was third baseman Miguel Andujar, who could earn some playing time at first base. They will be testing him out during Grapefruit League games this spring.

“He’ll play entirely at third,” the Yankee manager said of Andujar. “That said, there may be a day or two that we pick to have him on a back field just to get some first base in, which we may do with (backup catcher Austin) Romine or (starting catcher) Gary (Sanchez) just to keep some versatile options when you get into a little bit of a bind. But (Andujar’s) game work will be, I’ll say now, pretty much at third base.”

Several players will earn some time at first, but Andujar will be the only catcher to spend time there. Does this indicate anything in regard to free agent signings? Probably not, but it’s an interesting development nonetheless.

The idea of Manny Machado joining the team and replacing Andujar at third is still a possibility, yet a slim one. I would expect the Bombers to keep their youth star at his natural position and allow him to grow and adapt to the speed and power of the MLB.

Andujar struggled defensively in 2018, recording 15 errors at third. This was a major driving point behind the Machado rumors, but nobody expected him to come out as a rookie and impress on both sides of the ball. He was a fantastic hitter, finishing with a .296 BA with 47 doubles.

Miguel spent a majority of the offseason working on his defense:

“There are some things that we’ve had him work on defensively that I think really have taken hold with him and I think he’s had a great winter of work,” Boone said. “I think (those) who have been around him see the kind of work ethic (he has). That’s reared its head in the winter and I feel like he’s another guy that comes into spring training in a really good place and I’m excited to see him in another year in his progression of what’s a really good player.”

The Yankees have a stellar athlete and player in Andujar, and his youth actually gives them an upper-hand when it comes to bolstering the infield. Knowing he’s just sprouting as a professional player should give the team confidence in what he can become defensively at third base.