Did Yankees put Josh Donaldson on B-team to send him a message?

Josh Donaldson is training at Yankees spring training camp, Tampa.
John Allen
Tuesday February 28, 2023

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The spring training was just two days old on Sunday and the Yankees put Josh Donaldson on the B-squad. The message was clear and the split-squad placement showed the Yankees wanted the player to prove himself.

On Sunday afternoon, the Yankees played two games. Their first split-squad with most regular players in the lineup thrashed the Atlanta Braves 7-0 at George Steinbrenner Field. The other split-squad that traveled to Dunedin, 25 miles from Tampa, beat the Toronto Blue Jays 9-5.

The home-game squad had the captain, Gleyber Torres, catcher Jose Trevino, new cutter pitching Clarke Schmidt, and unreliable Aaron Hicks. The Yankees beat the Braves 7-0 in a pitching masterpiece. Only Josh Donaldson was missing. Wilmer Difo replaced him.

The Yankees squad that beat the Blue Jays 9-5 in their other game featured no starting player from the last year except Josh Donaldson.

Josh Donaldson must prove himself in the spring

The new pitch clock in center field is the only item in spring training more obvious than this. Donaldson was put on the second team. Even Hicks didn’t join him on that team. After a dismal first season with the Yankees, he has his work cut out for him to show himself.

Josh Donaldson ended the last season with .222/.308/.374. Each of those stats is the worst performance in his career so far. When the team got him in a trade, they had high hopes for him. He didn’t even come close to meeting those hopes.

Even though it’s hard to believe that Josh Donaldson is even close to losing his starting job. It is because the Yankees don’t have anyone else at the position except DJ LeMahieu, who can play anywhere in the infield as a utility player. But Donaldson should not ignore this wake-up call.

According to Aaron Boone, the Yankees are confident that Josh Donaldson will have a good year. But there is not a single clip available where Boone is seen claiming anything negative about his players, even when it would be fair, helpful, or even wanted for him to do so.

But it is hard to believe the way the Yankees send a regular starter to the B-game. Are the Yankees really want to convey Josh Donaldson a message?

On his part, Josh Donaldson didn’t take it the wrong way, which was good of him. He knows he has a lot of work to do.

“You take it at one day at a time,” he said to NJ.com. “I feel like the work that I’ve done in the offseason, I’m ready to go out there and do what’s expected of me. I want to go out there and play hard and play well and help our team win.”

What do you think? Leave your comment below.

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