The Yankees officially announced a series of expected roster moves this afternoon. Eric Chavez was placed on the 7-day concussion deal, creating room on the roster for Jayson Nix. Joba Chamberlain was transferred from the 15-day DL to the 60-day DL to clear a spot on the 40-man roster. Nix is in tonight’s lineup against the left-handed Danny Duffy, batting ninth and playing left field.
Brian Cashman made an appearance on WFAN 660 earlier this afternoon and had a number of interesting things to say beyond the usual YankeeSpeak schtick. Let’s recap (with some help from our own Stephen Rhoads)…
- Eric Chavez will be placed on the DL and was actually still at the hospital as of the time of the interview. Jayson Nix is taking his place on the roster and Cashman says he can play the outfield if needed.
- “I believe he’s getting there … baby steps,” said Cashman about Phil Hughes, making it sound like his rotation spot is safe for at least another few weeks. “I think he throws a fantastic curve, I think he’s better than what he’s shown … We want to be patient and optimistic but we also want to reward performance.”
- Joba Chamberlain has already shed his walking boot and is recovering well from both Tommy John surgery and his dislocated ankle. There’s even a chance he may return this year, though I wouldn’t count on itl. “Definitely a possibility [he returns in 2012],” said the GM. “He’s got some sort of amazing recovery ability, he doesn’t feel pain … Definitely possible we’ll see Joba.”
- Brett Gardner will head out on a minor league rehab assignment before returning to the team. He was shut down with pain in his right elbow a few days ago, though Cashman didn’t specify a new timetable. With the scheduled day off on Monday, me thinks the earliest we’ll see Gardner is Tuesday.
In a separate radio interview, Cashman said Andy Pettitte will make his next minor league tune-up start with Triple-A Empire State this Sunday. That game is scheduled to be played in Batavia but apparently is in the process of being moved to Rochester. It that goes well, it’s entirely possible we’ll see Pettitte make his return to the Yankees next weekend against the Mariners.
Via Sweeny Murti, the Yankees will recall utility man Jayson Nix today. No word on the corresponding move, but I have to think Eric Chavez will be placed on the DL after leaving last night’s game with whiplash and a possible concussion. Michael Pineda, Joba Chamberlain, and Cesar Cabral are all 60-day DL candidates, so clearing a 40-man roster spot is a non-issue.
Nix, 29, posted a .311 wOBA in just 31 plate appearances for Triple-A Empire State after starting the season on the DL. He owns a .286 wOBA in 869 big league plate appearances, though he’s actually hit lefties decent enough: .321 wOBA with a .204 ISO. The Yankees could use some versatility on the bench, and Nix has experience at every position other than pitcher, catcher, first base, and center field. He is out of options though, so they won’t be able to send him to the minors once everyone gets healthy without first sending him through waivers.
Via Joel Sherman, the Yankees have signed utility infielder Jayson Nix to a minor league contract with an invite to Spring Training. Thanks to the new Collective Bargaining Agreement, they’ll have to pay him a $100k bonus if he’s not added to the 40-man roster or released just before Opening Day.
Nix, 29, spent last season with the Blue Jays. He’s a terrible hitter, owning a .207/.280/.368 batting line (.286 wOBA) in 869 career plate appearances. He did manage to hit 26 homers in 653 plate appearances from 2009-2010 though, so there is some pop in his bat. Nix has played second, short, and third extensively in recent years, and he’s also filled in at both corner outfield spots. His defensive stats aren’t anything special though. It’s just a depth move, I doubt he has much of a shot of making the team.