Schmidt finds Yankees outing super tough, Trevino impresses in spring debut

Clarke Schmidt of the New York Yankees

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During the latest Yankees outing, Clarke Schmidt encountered early difficulties, failing to record an out until facing the fifth batter and conceding three runs by that point. After throwing 27 pitches, Schmidt managed to secure just two outs before being removed from the game. (He later returned to pitch the second and third innings.)

After the Yankees’ 9-8 win at Steinbrenner Field, Clarke Schmidt provided insight into his unique strategy during the first inning. With a spot in the starting rotation seemingly locked up, Schmidt viewed the game as a chance to test out new pitch sequences.

He specifically noted that he focused on incorporating more sinkers into his repertoire and evaluating how his cutter complemented the sinker in various scenarios. However, this experimentation came at a cost early in the game, as the Braves took advantage of Schmidt’s lack of familiarity with the new sequences.

Yankees manager Aaron Boone acknowledged Schmidt’s early struggles, stating, “He struggled a bit figuring it out early.” Nonetheless, Boone observed that after making adjustments following the first inning, Schmidt “looked like Clarke” on the mound.

As the likely fifth starter in the rotation, Schmidt encountered less resistance in the second and third innings. He allowed only one baserunner, Jarred Kelenic, who reached base on a walk but was subsequently erased on a double play initiated by Sean Murphy.

Even though Clarke Schmidt’s stat line shows that he gave up four runs on four hits and two walks over 2⅔ innings, his performance cannot be judged solely by the numbers. Schmidt managed to record five strikeouts while throwing a total of 52 pitches.

As the regular season draws near, it seems that the Yankees‘ right-hander has solidified his place in the Yankees’ starting rotation, unless the team makes a last-minute acquisition, such as signing Blake Snell. This newfound sense of security allows Schmidt to take a different approach to spring training, focusing more on his development rather than immediate results.

In previous seasons, when Schmidt was vying for a spot on the roster or in the rotation, he had to demonstrate both raw talent and impressive statistics to gain the trust of the Yankees’ organization. However, with his position now more secure, he has the freedom to experiment and refine his craft, as demonstrated by his performance on Sunday.

More significantly, the outing fulfilled its intended purpose. Schmidt emphasized the importance of spring training as an opportunity for experimentation. He recognized that during the regular season, the primary focus is on winning games, which leaves little room for testing new pitch sequences or fine-tuning techniques. In contrast, spring training offers the ideal setting for players to engage in such experimentation and refinement.

Yankees exploring Vivas’ versatility, Loaisiga’s strength

Jorbit Vivas celebrates after hitting a homer during Yankees 22-10 win over the Tigers at Tampa spring training facility.

Jorbit Vivas, a promising infield prospect for the Yankees, is broadening his defensive skills during this year’s spring training. Known primarily as a second baseman, Vivas was given the opportunity to showcase his abilities at shortstop for the final four innings of a recent game. This marked the first time he had played shortstop in quite some time, with his last appearance at the position dating back to his tenure with the Dodgers organization. Additionally, Vivas also spent time at third base during Saturday’s game.

Yankees manager Aaron Boone confirmed that this move is a purposeful approach aimed at providing Vivas with valuable experience on the left side of the infield. By exposing him to different positions, the team hopes to enhance Vivas’ versatility, which could potentially lead to a more diverse role for him in the future.

In other news, pitcher Jonathan Loáisiga took part in a live bullpen session, effectively simulating two innings of work. Boone stated that if Loáisiga recovers well from this session without any setbacks, he is scheduled to make his first appearance of the spring against the Tigers on Thursday in Lakeland, Florida.

Judge exits early in precautionary move


In a recent spring training game, Aaron Judge‘s participation was limited to just two at-bats. However, both Judge and Yankees manager Aaron Boone were quick to assure everyone that this early exit was not related to any injury concerns.

Boone disclosed that he had engaged in a discussion with Judge earlier in the day about the possibility of substituting Trent Grisham into the game. Judge was fully on board with this plan, indicating that the decision to remove him from the game prematurely was a deliberate strategy for managing playing time during the spring training period.

Judge himself reiterated this point, playfully reminding Boone of the current date (March 10th) and expressing his complete willingness to comply with any decisions made by his manager regarding his playing time.

Trevino returns, Gonzalez falters, Torres shines

Jose Trevino, who missed the second half of last season due to a wrist injury and the beginning of spring training with a calf issue, returned to the field and made an immediate impact. He hit a home run and spent five innings behind the plate.

Victor Gonzalez, the left-handed pitcher acquired from the Dodgers in a December trade, has struggled in his Grapefruit League appearances. He has allowed at least one run in each of his three outings and gave up a home run to Luke Williams on Sunday.

Gleyber Torres has been aggressive on the base paths during spring training, exemplifying his energetic style of play. In a recent game, he turned a ground ball up the middle, which deflected off the glove of shortstop Andrew Velasquez, into a hustle double in the third inning. Additionally, Torres has recorded three multi-hit games in his last four appearances.

The Yankees have a split-squad game at Steinbrenner Field against the Orioles at 1:05 p.m., with Will Warren scheduled to pitch. They also have another game against the Phillies in Clearwater, Florida, with Zack Wheeler on the mound, and Clayton Beeter starting at 1:05 p.m.

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