The past two springs, I made a point of talking to David Adams. Not because I expected him to break camp with the Yankees or anything, but because I like talking to the young guys in the middle lockers, and Adams was an interesting case because of his college success, his unusual injury history, and last year’s position change. These weren’t particularly in-depth conversations, just occasional small talk on the slow days.
I mention it only because there’s been absolutely no noticeable difference between Adams’ personality in spring training and his personality here in the big leagues. He’s polite, focused and composed. By all outward appearances, this environment has no affect on him.
“I think he’s been pretty calm in the way he approached it,” manager Joe Girardi said. “Third base is not his natural position – he’s played it in the minor leagues – but I think he’s handled it very well. He just seems to prepare very well and he’s ready to go. Even in the spring trainings (when he) was here, we didn’t see him a lot. It was hard to say what we were going to get, in a sense. I think he’s handled it really well.”
“If you play extremely well at this level, you’re going to play,” Girardi said.
Adams has played extremely well so far. He’s hit for average, shown power, and played a good third base. There are times when he seems to have a typically weak second baseman’s arm, but there was also a play this week in Baltimore when Adams needed to get the ball to first base in a hurry and put something extra on the throw. It was the first I’d seen that, and it suggested he has more when he needs it.
Seven games aren’t nearly enough to label Adams a future star, but the Yankees got him to New York just as soon as he was eligible, and he’s wasted little time making a strong first impression. He’s made that impression with his steady production on the field, and with his quiet demeanor in the clubhouse.
“To be thrown in here in the Yankees lineup, the history, the tradition they have,” Adams said. “They expect to win every game and I understand that. For me, I’m just trying to work as hard as I can and just put my head down and keep working. I think the wins are huge. If I’m jumping in there and we’re losing, I don’t think it’s a good thing. I think having the wins behind us is helping out a lot.”
Associated Press photo