Yankees News, 1/10: Everything you need to know in one place

New York Yankees fans tired of lack of real news

With the most significant story, who will replace Gleyber Torres at short? Yankees fans have had absolutely no news at all, and we’re tired of! After more than two months since the 2021 World Series, fans know no more about a replacement than they did months ago. Meanwhile, there have been no meaningful discussions on how to get a new Collective Bargaining Agreement. During the Manfred instituted lockout, teams couldn’t ever talk to players.

The lack of an agreement has caused no confirmed news as to what a new season will look like for the Yankees or any MLB team for that matter. It is more critical for Yankee fans as general manager Brian Cashman made no significant moves before the lockout. Many teams made major improvements to their teams during that time, removing 20 of baseball’s top players scooped up. This has produced hundreds of articles written about what the Yankees might do or might not do. Unfortunately, that is not real news, as issues are hashed out and rehashed. Yankee fans are tired of it and want factual information that will affect the 2022 team.

The Torres debacle: Will there be an upgrade?

One of those issues is what the Yankees will do to replace Gleyber Torres at short. Torres was permanently moved to second base as the season wound down. Although many of the big-name replacements have been hired by other teams, there are still options. Still, we don’t even know if the Yankees will pounce on a remaining big-name (Correa/Story/Simmons) or take the stopgap road while waiting for Anthony Volpe or Oswald Peraza to advance.

There has recently been talk about acquiring Matt Chapman, a third baseman, as a replacement. Some say he would be an adequate replacement, while others say he should take third base and move Gio Urshela to short. The big question with this move and many others is would it be a real upgrade. Unfortunately, the fans are no closer to knowing the answer to that question than months ago. The Yankees could surprise us and make a long-term deal with the best shortstop out there, Carlos Correa, but with other needs that does not seem likely.

Andrew McCutchen’s name is mentioned

In his short time with the Yankees, McCutchen was a fan favorite. Now three years later, he is being mentioned as a backup for the Yankees’ oft-injured Aaron Hicks. McCutchen, in his mid-thirties, is still a productive player. Last season hi slash line was .222/.334/.444, 27 HR, 78 RBIs. Those home run numbers are undoubtedly attractive to the Yankees. He is also a walking artist, walking as often as striking out.

But don’t hold your breath waiting for a reunion. His age is already showing decline in his numbers. The upside of his personality may not be enough to overcome the Yankees’ other needs, which are far more important.

Yankees hire a woman to lead Tampa team

The Yankees have made history hiring the first women manager. Rachel Balkovec broke the barrier by becoming the first full-time female hitting coach within an MLB organization. The 34-year-old Balkovec will be named manager for the Yankees’ Low-A affiliate in Tampa this season, a source confirmed Sunday, as first reported by The Athletic. Balkovec will become the first woman to manage an affiliated minor league team. 

Balkover is not new to coaching. She has spent the last two seasons as a hitting coach for the Yankees’ rookie-level Florida Complex League. She has also been a first base coach in the All-Star Futures game in Denver. This new challenge she is grateful for and will not take lightly. 

“I view my path as an advantage,” she told The Associated Press in 2019. “I had to do probably much more than maybe a male counterpart, but I like that because I’m so much more prepared for the challenges that I might encounter.”

Will Granderson return as a coach?

The short answer is no. He was approached first by the New York Mets that he also played for. He was not interested in coaching at this time, as he told general manager Bill Eppler. He would probably tell the Yankees the same thing.

Granderson spent four years at Yankee Stadium before becoming New York Met for three years. Many rumors have been that Granderson might return to the Yankees in coaching gig, but Jon Heyman reports that Granderson is not interested in the position. Granderson for years has been an MLB ambassador around the world. He has kept busy in his retirement for being an active player. He is the Players Alliance president. He also works with TBS and his many charities. 

Cameron Maybin may join the YES Network staff

Yankee favorite Cameron Maybin may be joining the YES Network team of broadcasters. Both play-by-play announcer Michael Kay and color commentator David Cone will be taking on new responsibilities with ESPN while holding down their gigs with the YES Network; both have said they will still be a major force on YES even though you may see more of Ryan Ruocco. Ex-Yankee manager Buck Showalter will also not be with the network this season as he has taken on the job of managing the New York Mets.

 Cameron Maybin, who announced his retirement from the game last week, has been mentioned as a new addition to the YES Network’s team. Maybin’s reaction to the rumor was any indication, he’d be ready to sign on the dotted line shortly.

Jake Hirst young but successful at Hudson Valley

Often minor league news is just that, minor. But quietly, Jake Hirst has been making a name for himself, coaching the likes of Oswald Peraza, Anthony Volpe, Austin Wells, and many more Yankee prospects. Hirst, who is very young, came to the Yankees with plenty of experience. For Assumption High School in Assumption High School in 2017, he was hitting and outfield coach at the sophomore level. After that, he was the sports and performance coach for the Summit Training Center in Iowa. At Augustana College, he worked daily with hitters and outfielders. Program fall, winter, and spring hitting progression.

The Yankees hired him to be a hitting coach in 2018 with Low-A Tampa. After no minor league season in 2020, he was promoted to the High-A Hudson Valley Renegades. He learned much from Dillon Lawson, the new major League New York Yankee hitting coach during his time there.

“I learned a lot from just watching Dillon in the cage, his cage presence is really just impressive… the way he is able to quickly build relationships with players is second to none. He knows when to push, he knows when to back off. He really gets to know each hitter that steps in the cage, a lot of that comes from just how well he prepares. He just doesn’t leave a lot to chance, and he prepares better than just about anyone I know.”

With Dillon Lawson’s promotion to the Stadium, Joe Migliaccio, who most recently served as the Double-A Somerset hitting coach, was recently announced to take over Lawson’s previous role as the organizational hitting coordinator. Going into the 2022 season, Hirst will continue learning and taking on the challenge of being a Yankee minor league hitting coach. He will continue his path to the major league level with significant potential.

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