Friday, February 19, 2016
Posted by el duque at 6:13 AM
It's possible that Refsnyder will end up with a fat wife and a coal truck, and spend his future Sundays drawing finger pictures into pretzel dust on some laminated Elks Club bar top in Moosic, a place that is as close to Syracuse as it is to New York City... But I say no.
This is going to be Refsnyder's year.
Of course, much depends on Dustin Ackley, the ex-prospect we sluiced from Seattle at last season's trade deadline. Ackley looks like the 23rd man on the 2016 Yankee roster. He can play 1B, 2B and OF, bats left, and if he hits, he could bury Refsnyder in Scranton for yet another year - at age 24.
When Mark Teixeira or Castro need a day off, Ack will handle it. But if someone gets hurt - let me rephrase that - WHEN someone gets hurt - it will dictate a Rube Goldberg chain of events, culminating with Refsnyder's ascension. Here are some scenarios.
1. Tex goes out for a month. First, why would we not expect this? He's old and fragile. I was surprised when the Yankees didn't chase Ike Davis harder, because right now, they have no pro 1B at Scranton. Ackley is a stopgap 1B, not a six-week replacement. But... there is someone who can play first base.
It's Chase Headley. He moves to first. and Castro moves to third. (Girardi has said he wants Castro to learn the position.) That would mean the Yankees bring up Refsnyder, who could platoon with Ackley. Or maybe it's just Refsnyder at 2B.
2. Headley gets hurt, misses a month. Headley was a workhorse last year, one of the few to not miss much time. But hey, shit happens. We have no backup 3B at Scranton. So... Castro moves to third, and - yep - Refsnyder gets the call.
3. Gregorious gets hurt, misses a month. This is unlikely but... you know. Once again, Castro becomes the lynch pin; he moves to his old slot with the Cubs, and Refsnyder plays 2B.
4. Castro gets hurt, misses a month. Need I say it?
5. Refsnyder works in the OF. It's his natural position. Right now, the Yankees don't need another fly-chaser in Scranton. They already have four. But if Refsnyder makes the big club, playing the OF occasionally would be a big advantage.
OK, if everybody stays healthy all season long, Refsnyder does a Jimmy Hoffa. But that's not gonna happen. This is going to be his year. And if he makes himself into a major league 2B, he could become an important homegrown Yankee or - at the least - a future trade chip.
Let's hope. You can get pissed at the way the Yankees do business. But you can't root against guys like Refsnyder. They are the reason we come back.