Now that Yankees’ No. 1 prospect Anthony Volpe has secured the opening day shortstop gig, it was time for him to pick a new number. Though #77 has something cool about it, it’s not very often you see a middle infielder repping such a high number. Now, fortunately, we have a new number to buy of his, and some Yankees fans that have been fans for the past decade or so will be very happy to see what he’s switching to.
Volpe will be wearing #11 this season and likely for the foreseeable future, as per Jack Curry. The number was most recently worn by future Monument Park member, Brett Gardner, who had a fantastic career with the organization. It’ll be the changing of the guard, and Volpe now has his new jersey that should sell out like hotcakes — unless you already own a Brett Gardner one.
Anthony Volpe was also congratulated by his idol, Derek Jeter, today. On Twitter, Jeter went ahead and tweeted at him and said, “Congratulations. There’s nothing like playing shortstop for the New York Yankees.” Many remember when Volpe was drafted that, he stated Jeter was his favorite player and that the reason he forewent college was because it was his dream to play for this organization.
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Gardner was one of the best Yankees in recent memory:
Now, Volpe can make that dream a reality for the rest of his MLB career. He absolutely clobbered the baseball and forced the organization to make the very difficult decision of optioning Peraza down to AAA, even after he had a great month last year at the major league level. Volpe has the tools to succeed, and now he has the jersey to match.
Gardner donned #11 for his entire Yankee tenure and posted a 38.4 fWAR with a career 103 wRC+ over the 12 full seasons with the team. He was one of the unheralded stars of the early 2010s, and his rookie year was the ‘09 season, which was the last time the Yankees won the World Series.
Maybe, this is meant to be deja vu. This could mean that Volpe’s rookie season will also lead to a World Series title, as now he’s the one tossing on the #11 on his back. For a lot of fans, they now have a Gardner jersey and a Volpe jersey, and both guys should go down as two Yankee greats. Volpe looks to show off his skill set and what impressed in spring this upcoming year.
This spring, he posted a 1.033 OPS, swiped 5 bags, hit 3 HR, and played exceptional defense, which all culminated in him getting the job right out of the gate. Some projections expect him to struggle in his rookie campaign, but I think the kid will be able to adjust and overcome adversity this season. It’ll be a storybook year for him, and what better way to cap off a debut season than with a ring, just ask Brett Gardner.