Yankees’ starting catcher set to miss several weeks of spring training with new injury

jose trevino, yankees
Feb 16, 2023; Tampa, FL, USA; New York Yankees catcher Jose Trevino (39) works out at George M. Steinbrenner Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Yankees opened spring training on Wednesday afternoon with a few injury updates, notably that bullpen arm Scott Effross underwent back surgery in December, which will sideline him until the summer, and starting catcher Jose Trevino sustained a calf strain several weeks ago.

Yankees’ Injury Updates and Roster Implications

Trevino is expected to return at some point during spring training and should be ready to go for Opening Day, but this situation will undoubtedly give Austin Wells more opportunities to crack the roster and potentially even steal the starting job.

Trevino, now 31, has two more years of team control before he becomes a free agent in 2026, settling at $2.73 million to avoid arbitration for the 2024 season. Last year, he played just 55 games, suffering a right wrist tear that ended his season prematurely. He hit .210/.257/.312, including four homers and 15 RBIs, with a 13.1% strikeout rate and 4.8% walk rate.

Defensive Skills and Trevino’s Role

The veteran catcher isn’t known for his offensive production; rather, he’s best known for his defensive efficiency. Trevino was ranked the top defensive catcher in baseball in 2022, ranking 5th in strike rate last season at 49.9% and tied for 8th with six catcher framing runs.

Losing Trevino would certainly be a significant loss, but the injury doesn’t seem to be overly severe, and Wells will be the direct beneficiary, earning additional reps, including catching for Gerrit Cole.

Potential Shift in the Catching Dynamic

One of the primary reasons Trevino will maintain his “starter” moniker is because he serves as Cole’s personal catcher, but Wells earning Cole’s trust would signify a major shift in the power dynamic. This opportunity for Wells to step up could lead to interesting developments in the Yankees’ catching situation as the season progresses.

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