Yankees News: Catcher position suffers Opening Day blow, young pitcher ready to make impact in 2022

Ben Rortvedt, yankees

The New York Yankees are still trying to iron out the roster over the next few days, with Opening Day just around the bend. Minor injuries have taken their toll early in camp, but nothing debilitating, so far (knock on wood).

The notable injured players are Ben Rortvedt, recently acquired catcher from the Twins, and Luis Severino, who’s been dealing with general soreness lately. Rortvedt’s oblique issues came with him in the trade that sent Gary Sanchez and Gio Urshela out west.

“I’m making strides. Today I felt a lot better than the last live (batting practice) so I feel good,” Rortvedt said, via Kristie Ackert of the NY Daily News. “I hit (tossed balls) the other day and kind of still going day by day, kind of reading the body, but catching wise I feel good and just trying to slowly work in the swing. Still trying to be smart about it so it doesn’t linger. Not bad. We just don’t want any setbacks so we’re trying to really give it time.”

Rortvedt is making progress slowly. The Yankees are high on the former Twin, despite posting a lackluster batting average last season during a small sample size of MLB action. He’s also not much of a power hitter, despite being jacked. In fact, he doesn’t really fit the team’s mold at all, aside from being great defensively and still hosting a questionable arm.

The Yankees will roll with Kyle Higashioka primarily as the starter, which makes sense given his success this spring. Higgy is hitting .450 with five homers this spring over 20 at-bats, hopefully foreshadowing a dominant campaign.

The Yankees are finally ready to rely on Albert Abreu a bit more in 2022:

The Bombers are still trying to determine their pitchers for the start of the regular season, but Aaron Boone did confirm that relief arm Albert Abreu would be on the team.

“Albert’s out of options, and coupled with coming off what he did last year, I feel like he’s doing good here for us so far this spring,” Boone said.
Abreu posted a 5.15 ERA over 28 games last season, totaling 36.2 innings. He also recorded a 4.50 SIERA and averaged a 97.8 mph fastball, which is perfect for the team’s preference. If Abreu can offer significant value this upcoming season, it would smooth over the loss of Zack Britton, who’s projected to miss virtually the entire year.