Jobu updates us on the status of a couple of his least favorite Yankees.
I wasn’t thinking of updating this series for a while, but things have definitely been happening on the Ben Francisco and Shawn Kelley roster spot watch front. Let’s just quickly review and we can all go about our business… Here we go.
Ben Francisco: It’s Alive! It’s Aliiiiiive!
The Yankees made a flurry of roster moves this week. Guys were called up, sent down and even designated for assignment… but Ben Francisco lives! The double header monday allowed the Yankees to call up Corban Joseph as the 26th man (a new rule that allows teams to call up an extra player on double header days). Joseph played first base in the first game and second base in the second game, and did alright. At least he got his first big league hit out of the way. After the games were over, the Yankees sent down LHP Vidal Nuno (after the kid impressed with 5 shutout innings) and put another rookie, Brett Marshall on the roster to serve as the long man just in case (Warren pitched 4 innings in game two of the double dip and needed rest).
Here’s the kicker though. When the Yankees sent down Nuno, they also sent down an outfielder. In fact, they sent down an outfielder with no clear role on the team. One that had been struggling so far this season. They sent down Brennan Boesch. He must feel like a total jerk, and must think Girardi is the ultimate troll. The problem is that Boesch is left handed, and the Yankees need Francisco’s right handed bat to balance out the lineup and ensure the killing of rallies… right? Anywho, the next day they called up Curtis Granderson (which is where Nuno’s roster spot went). On wednesday, they called up rookie third baseman David Adams to basically take over until Youkilis or A-Rod get back. They cut Chris Nelson. Seriously. At this point, Francisco must feel like one of those ducks in the shooting game at the county fair. Everywhere he goes, guys around him are getting shot down. He’s just walking back and forth waiting to die.
Hopefully he’ll be out of our hair soon. I’m willing to start a pool to see when (if ever) the Yankees actually cut him. He can’t possibly last much longer… can he??
Shawn Kelley: Roster Spot Watch Off?
I hate to admit it, but I might have been wrong about Shawn Kelley. Well, let’s not get crazy. He was pretty awful to start the year. Flat out stunk up the mound every time out. Something seems to have clicked in the right-hander lately. Along with the rest of the Yankees bullpen, Kelley has looked practically un-hittable of late, and it’s making me consider lifting the watch off of him all together.
Since my first Roster Spot Watch update, Kelley has gotten into two games. In one of them, he did something that no Yankees reliever had done since Goose Gossage. No, he didn’t whine and cry until someone elected to the hall of fame. He didn’t criticize Mariano Rivera for not having to pitch 3 innings for a save every day, in the snow, up hill both ways either. He came in and struck out the first five men he faced against the Royals. Overall, he struck out six of the seven men he faced. He then pitched Tuesday night against the Indians, notching a strike out in 2/3 of an inning. His next game, against Seattle, he gave up a solo homer to Mike Morse, but struck out 5 men in 2 innings. Actually, overall, he has 15 Ks in his last five outings. He just might be turning it all around.
Overall on the season, he’s managed to pull his ERA down to 5.71 and has 30 Ks in 17.1 innings. It might be time to leave him alone for a while… but don’t get too comfortable, Shawn. The Roster Spot watch is always lurking around the corner. Congrats on the turnaround though.
Featured image courtesy of: Mel Evans/AP
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