Oswaldo Cabrera ‘ready for any position’ in make-or-break quest for Yankees life

Oswaldo Cabrera of the New York Yankees is taking position during a game in 2023.

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Just six weeks ago, Oswaldo Cabrera arrived at spring training with a determined mindset to reclaim the form that eluded him during a challenging 2023 season. However, his initial efforts were met with obstacles, making it difficult to regain his confidence early on. There were even talks of the Yankees trading Oswaldo Cabrera for a more meaningful target.

Fortunately, Oswaldo Cabrera’s performance at the plate began to steadily improve as spring training progressed. This upward trajectory comes at a pivotal time, as the Yankees will be relying on him to fill the void at third base with DJ LeMahieu sidelined due to a bone bruise in his right foot. It seems that he accepted the naysayers’ challenge to regain the Yankees’ trust and win back his pinstripes.

Speaking on Monday night before the Yankees departed Mexico City, Oswaldo Cabrera acknowledged the team’s disappointment over LeMahieu’s injury. Despite this setback, he expressed his unwavering commitment to stepping up and contributing in any way possible to ensure the team’s success. Oswaldo Cabrera emphasized his willingness to play any role needed, including filling LeMahieu’s spot at third base. He reassured everyone that he has experience playing the position and is confident in his ability to perform effectively.

“I’ve been working hard to just be ready in any position that they need me to try to help the team win,” he said. I’m ready for it. It’s not a new position for me, so I feel that I’m ready to take that [responsibility].”

Oswaldo Cabrera rebounds after struggles


Oswaldo Cabrera’s journey with the New York Yankees has been a tale of contrasting seasons. He burst onto the scene in 2022, making an immediate impact upon his debut. However, 2023 proved to be a different narrative, filled with struggles despite starting the season as the team’s left fielder.

The 25-year-old arrived at spring training with a clear objective: to rediscover the confidence that had waned during a difficult previous year. Speaking at the beginning of camp, Oswaldo Cabrera openly acknowledged this focus. He elaborated on the challenges of 2023, where the Yankees sent him to Triple-A on three separate occasions to address his offensive woes. While these demotions aimed to help him work through his struggles, Oswaldo Cabrera saw limited playing time at Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, participating in only 10 games.

Rebuilding confidence proved to be a gradual process for Oswaldo Cabrera. He admitted to a daily battle in maintaining his newfound belief during spring training. However, his performance at the plate offered encouraging signs of progress. Despite a sluggish start (1-for-23 in his first nine games), the utility star found his rhythm later in spring training, finishing strong with a 9-for-24 performance over his final 11 games (excluding the Mexico City series).

With DJ LeMahieu sidelined due to injury, Oswaldo Cabrera now faces a critical opportunity. He is prepared to step up and fill the void at third base, demonstrating his willingness to embrace any role that contributes to the team’s success.

Oswaldo Cabrera credits coaching, winter grind for improved hitting

Oswaldo Cabrera of the Yankees hits a home run against the Phillies on March 18, 2024.

Oswaldo Cabrera attributes his recent success at the plate to a combination of factors, including close collaboration with the Yankees‘ coaching staff and valuable winter league experience.

Since the start of spring training, Oswaldo Cabrera has been working diligently with assistant hitting coaches Pat Roessler and Casey Dykes. Their sessions have focused on refining various aspects of his swing, incorporating both familiar techniques and new adjustments designed to elevate his performance. Oswaldo Cabrera has expressed satisfaction with the improvements they’ve made together, crediting the coaches for their positive influence on his hitting.

This season brings a new responsibility for Oswaldo Cabrera – participation in pre-series meetings with the Yankees’ hitting staff to strategize against left-handed pitchers. While he had not finalized his specific approach against Astros’ lefty Framber Valdez for Thursday’s game at the time of the interview, the Yankees star clearly appreciates the opportunity to analyze upcoming matchups and develop informed hitting strategies.

“We were working from the beginning of spring training,” he talked about how two assistant hitting coaches helped him. “We’ve been working on a lot of things — not new, but things that help me a lot. So I feel like that work is getting the results we want.”

“When I played in Venezuela [over the winter], I got a lot of reps lefty-lefty. So right now, I feel good. I feel like I faced a lot this spring training lefty-lefty. All those at-bats I feel good.”

Oswaldo Cabrera’s confidence against southpaws has further benefited from his winter league experience in Venezuela. Facing left-handed pitchers regularly during the offseason provided valuable preparation for what he would encounter during spring training. He emphasized his current comfort level when facing southpaw pitchers, attributing it directly to the extensive practice he received over the winter.

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