The New York Yankees have set their ALCS roster, 13 hitters and pitchers each.
— New York Yankees (@Yankees) October 19, 2022
The most significant addition is shortstop prospect Oswald Peraza. He had a career year at Triple-A and then hit .306 in 18 games at the big-league level. Isiah Kiner-Falefa is also on the roster, but one has to assume Boone will switch between Peraza and Oswaldo Cabrera at shortstop. Does this mean Giancarlo Stanton and/or Matt Carpenter plays left field in Houston?
Even more surprising is having Frankie Montas and Greg Weissert on the pitching staff. Montas hasn’t pitched since suffering a shoulder strain in September and was streaky for New York after coming over in a trade with Oakland. Weissert only appeared in 12 games, but his biting slider could be a nice secret weapon out of the bullpen.
Now, for the absences. DJ LeMahieu and Ron Marinaccio were left off, kind of shocking since both expected to be available, particularly LeMahieu. His toe injury must still be affecting his swing just enough that it’s not worth having him on the roster just to hit singles. Marinaccio’s changeup does well against lefties, but Houston’s righty-dominant lineup means it makes more sense for him to keep rehabbing his shin.
Similarly, this is probably why the veteran Lucas Luetge was left off the ALCS roster after being available in the ALDS. Aaron Hicks is also out for the rest of the playoffs with a knee injury. In a surprising move that neither helps nor harms the Yankees, Marwin Gonzalez is not available this round.
It’d be nice to have LeMahieu available but otherwise, this is a solid ALCS roster for the Yankees. Managing the pitching staff will be tough, but having Montas and Weissert as fresh arms definitely helps. Oswald Peraza has a strong enough glove at shortstop that Isiah Kiner-Falefa shouldn’t raise anyone’s blood pressure. We also have to assume Oswaldo Cabrera will get some starts in the infield.
This is who Aaron Boone believes can get the Yankees past the AL-best Houston Astros. A tough matchup awaits but if these New York Yankees are anything at all, they’re gamers. They will be ready.
Game 1 of the ALCS begins at 7:37 p.m. ET on TBS.
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