On Sunday the New York Yankees demoted second-baseman Rob Refsnyder after he started guns a blazing as a big leaguer.
By Robby Sabo
Just when you think they’re out, they get pulled back in.
Finally, it started to look as though Brian Cashman and the New York Yankees were infusing young talent into the big league level. But alas, it turns out these remain the same old, tired Bronx Bombers.
Today though, the Yanks announced the demotion of Refsnyder after only four games making room for Carlos Beltran to slide back onto the 25-man roster.
Via Dan Martin of the New York Post:
“I wasn’t expecting this, but I had a great experience,” Refsnyder said before Sunday’s game. “I got my feet wet. I saw what major league pitching, defense, what it was all about.”
Nobody was expecting it Rob.
The most logical option to keep Refnsyder on the squad would’ve been to designate utility-infielder Brendan Ryan for assignment. This now means Stephen Drew – who’s currently hitting .182 with 12 home runs and 25 runs batted in (79 games) – will once again be the starting second-baseman for the foreseeable future.
The first question that comes to mind is simple: why?
Granted, Refsnyder didn’t light the world on fire during his four games (.167 BA, 1 HR, 2 RBI), but he showed much more than just numbers during his brief stay.
His timely home run in Fenway Park against the Boston Red Sox prior to the break showcased a skill-set for which Yankee fans adore. He came up clutch on one of the bigger stages in baseball.
This, for a 24-year old rookie, was something for all fans to stand up and be excited about.
He had already become a fan favorite after just four-games.
The other thing his arrival marked was the idea that the Yanks were finally attempting to infuse youth into the lineup. Everywhere you look around the diamond, there’s just one more veteran high-priced player playing alongside another. The incredibly tough task of trying to find opportunities for these young position players has become increasingly difficult for Cashman.
Furthermore, the scary thought of being out of a pennant race in August and September scares Hal Steinbrenner and the rest of the brass to such an extent that unnecessary signings come heavy during the offseason.
Perfect case and point comes in the form of Drew. Was it really a priority to sign Drew to a one-year, $9.5 million deal prior to the season? The man is 32-years old and provides very little upside moving forward.
The continuing struggles of Drew during the 2015 campaign should’ve already prompted the Yanks to cut their losses and move in a younger direction.
After all, it’s not easy to find opportunities for these youngsters in this lineup. They finally found one at second-base for Refsnyder and yet they couldn’t stay the course.
This demotion just further proves that this organization is still not ready to endure some of the hardships that comes along with committing to a full time prospect.
Allowing Refsnyder to assume the second-base spot was a no-brainer. Because of that, fans are completely befuddled right now.
Fans of the New York team from the Bronx want to see a club that has young, homegrown talent involved. It’s a notion that has caught on fast and hard with the New York Mets.
Sure, records are what they are (as the Yanks remain comfortable atop the AL East), but developing and building a team is also a very important aspect to fandom excitement. What’s going to happen in a few weeks? Drew will continue to struggle and provide marginal play while fans clamor for a Refsnyder call-up.
All Cashman did today was delay the inevitable for another few weeks. Poor job by the Yankees.
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