A new story from Effectively Wild: A FanGraphs Baseball Podcast


To DJ le mayhew, I don't know that this Julie could be considered a bounce back season for him. He was so good before the all star break last year, and then the toe started giving him trouble. This is where the silver lining of the Yankees infield glut comes into play because they got a lot of infielders, but they got DJ le mayhew, who, you know, you don't know if that toe, which never had surgery this off season will hold up through a full year. So maybe you need those extra guys. Maybe you need to watch DJ lemieux he was workload and play him only 5 games a week, and you need those extra bodies. I don't know. You're talking about how athleticism is going to be more important than ever for middle infielders, particularly second baseman with the shift restrictions, while if he's out there running on a bum toe, you're going to drive him into the ground earlier than he did last year. So, you know, I think that the skills are there for DJ. It's just about whether his toe is going to hold up and whether the Yankees can keep him upright. So man, it's tough to say on both Donaldson and DJ but I would think the outlook is better for DJ. And at catcher trevino really sees that job became an all star gold Glover. He led the league in framing according to fan crafts. There is still a lot of hope out there for Kyle higashioka bat and he did seem to underperform some of his peripherals last year. He's got good strike zone judgment. So do you expect that trevino will still get the bulk of the playing time there? Absolutely. The Yankees love him behind the plate. They love him from a strike stealing standpoint. They're really gonna even more appreciate his throws over the first base. The staff throws. Because he'll give either more opportunities to pick off runners at first base. But also low key, he'll throw it over the first base just to give the pitcher maybe a breath or two between pitches, knowing that the pitch clock is putting him up against it and, you know, kind of have him against the ropes. So I think it'll be trevino. I think that Kyle higashioka, I know that Kyle believes that he figured something out in his swing, late last season, in August. Kind of made himself a little bit more contact oriented. And if you go back and look at his numbers, like I think he hit two 80, the rest of the last 30 games that he played in. So that's an improvement. And Kyle is such a smart guy. He really will figure it out, you think. But I think that trevino is the kind of unquestioned starter with Kyle there as a really high quality backup on the cusp of challenging him for playing time. Yeah, it's interesting you mentioned the back picks. Noah Woodward in his substack, the event scout wrote the other day about how sometimes there's a tradeoff if you're a catcher, lots of catchers have gone to the one knee set up now in part because it does help you frame low pitches and so trevino does that too. Often it can be kind of an either or that can make it tough to get up and throw and do a back pick quickly. But if you don't do that, you're surrendering sometimes you have to make a kind of calculus because on a pitch when you try it back pick, you don't get the chance to frame and also if you're down on one knee, it might be tough to do the back pick. You end up potentially losing strikes on those pitches, even if they're fairly close. So there's kind of an interesting cat and mouse calculus that catchers have to make. Yeah, they're in. There is. But Rizzo and trevino last year are super on the same page with that. They coordinate themselves and I'm sure that a lot of catchers do this. But they coordinate themselves on when that snap throws in a comfrey pitch. And I'm sure the picture is in on that to an extent too. So I think that there is some coordination there and when you are giving a bit of that strike zone control, a bit of that pitch framing superiority, when you're giving it away, you know it's what the possibility of grabbing someone gets at first base. I think trevino far and away had the most back picks last year. I think it was something silly. Like, I think he outpaced the field almost by double. So I don't know whether Yankees Twitter is representative of Yankees fandom in real life. But certainly seemed that Yankees Twitter was not thrilled about both Aaron Boone and Brian cashman being back, although given their longevity and given how operates it was not a huge surprise given that the Yankees all told had a fairly successful season despite the strange trajectory of it. So do those guys just kind of have unlimited leashes like is there anything that could jeopardize them? Obviously Brian cashman came back after his contract ran out. So is there anything they actually could do to jeopardize their jobs and should Yankees feds be happier to have them than they are? I mean, I think that Brian cashman is by far more safe than Aaron Boone is and I think that goes without saying. Just one from UC how long he's been in the job and how long he's been in the Yankees organization, really he goes back to I think a year before I was born in 86 and I think he's been in the organization for that long.

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