With the signing of Brett Gardner, the New York Yankees have very good outfield depth going into the season. Clint Frazier and Gardy can play left field, Aaron Hicks is the starting center fielder, and Aaron Judge is one of the gameâ€™s premier right fielders.
In addition, designated hitter Giancarlo Stanton is more than capable of playing the field every once in a while, and Yankeesâ€™ skipper Aaron Boone recently indicated that he wants to give the slugger some time out there to keep his legs fresh and prepared.
However, if you hadnâ€™t noticed, there is a noteworthy name missing in that outfield depth chart: Mike Tauchman. The lefty-hitting Yankeesâ€™ player is a very good fielder, but his bat just wasnâ€™t there in 2020, and now, it appears he is in danger of not making the team.
Per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, Tauchman’s spot on the Yankees Opening Day roster could be in jeopardy.
What will the Yankees do with Tauchman?
With a triple slash of .242/.342/.305 with no homers, 14 RBI and six steals in 111 plate appearances, Tauchman has a lot to prove in spring training, especially on offense.
It was a steep downgrade from 2019, when he batted .277/.361/.504 with a 128 wRC+.
The fact that Gardner returned, plus fellow lefty Jay Bruce showcasing a power element that Tauchman simply lacks means that the latter could have a hard time proving to the Yankees that he can be included on the opening day roster.
Bruce can also provide a backup option at first base. Tauchman does have versatility, as he can cover all outfield spots well. But the offensive questions are enough to put his spot in jeopardy.
Tauchman could be traded, as he is out of minor league options. Itâ€™s unlikely that the Yankees release him, so they would probably want to test the market to see if he can fetch something.