A few weeks ago, Joe Torre all but put Ron Villone on the roster. He reversed course earlier today.
“Initially when I saw him throw earlier in the spring it look like he was ahead of last year,” Torre said. “But after watching yesterday and a couple of other outings, it looks right now that he’s trying to impress by creating more velocity. But it’s what it is. Last year we certainly didn’t see the velocity until we got into the season. He is the same guy we see here this spring. Which means we have to make a decision.”
Torre said he has been impressed with LHP Sean Henn, who is far more effective as a reliever than he was as a starter. “He’s much improved, he seems much more relaxed. Villone aside, we certainly have Sean on our radar,” Torre said.
There are two other considerations in play. Henn has another option (based on minor-league DL) time and Villone’s contract guarantees him $2.5 million if he makes the team.
So they can demote Henn and give Villone a chance to get going. But that chance will cost $2.5 million.
Camp doesn’t break until March 31. A lot can happen.
Henn will pitch today against the Pirates. Villone will appear in a minor-league game.
The Yankees reassigned T.J. Beam to the minor-league camp. “He’s not the same guy we saw last year,” Torre said.