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A New York Yankees blog by Chad Jennings and the staff of The Journal News

Sanchez sees a future even with McCann under contract

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Misc on Feb 28, 2014 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Brian McCannToday’s first Yankees home run was to deep right field. Torii Hunter camped in front of the warning track as if it were a routine fly ball, but Brian McCann wasn’t fooled. He knew he’d hit the ball well, and it was heading to the top of a blue building well beyond the outfield wall.

The second Yankees home run was to left field. This one was more of a line drive, remarkable not for how far it went but for how quickly it left. Off the bat, it might have been a double if didn’t have the hang time, but it stayed up and just keep traveling; Gary Sanchez’s first ever home run in big league camp.

“I’m working hard to be able to belong,” Sanchez said. “Just keep working and we’ll see.”

It was interesting to see those two go deep: the catcher signed to a five-year contract, and the catcher so often labeled as the top prospect in the Yankees minor league system. This was the winter Sanchez was added to the 40-man roster. It’s also the winter he watched the Yankees signed a long-term deal with a guy who plays his position. Sanchez heard the news on his television back home in the Dominican Republic.

“It’s not something that made me feel bad particularly,” Sanchez said. “It wasn’t my decision. I’m just focused on myself and I’m just working hard on myself. … I never thought of it as any sort of danger or anything to my own future with the team. I never saw that.”

Sanchez just turned 21 in December and he’s played only 23 games above High-A. It’s not as if he’s knocking on the door to the big leagues. While the Yankees say they’ve been encouraged by his progress on defense — and Sanchez said he’s been working on his defense a lot this spring — I’ve talked to other talent evaluators who still doubt he’ll be a legitimate big league catcher. Ultimately, he still has hurdles to clear before he’s faced with a true logjam. By the time he’s ready, McCann could be ready for time at first base and designated hitter.

“I’m not going to get too far ahead of myself,” McCann said. “I feel great right now, so that’s kind of the way I operate.”

McCann and Sanchez had their solo homers, Francisco Arcia had a triple and Austin Romine had a base hit. That’s four catchers with hits in this game alone. John Ryan Murphy has also been an early standout offensively, and Francisco Cervelli seems to have a leg up in the competition for the big league backup job. For now the Yankees catching position belongs to McCann, and Sanchez is still a gem of the minor league system, and in between is considerable depth.

It’s become a position with all sorts of possibilities for the short term and the long term.

“Obviously, (the catchers) had a good day and they swung the bat extremely well,” manager Joe Girardi said. “… It’s nice (to have that depth) because we know how quickly they can get nicked up and you want to have people you can turn to. We look at the guys we have in camp now, four of them played in the big leagues last year. That’s unusual.”

Associated Press photo





52 Responses to “Sanchez sees a future even with McCann under contract”

  1. MTU February 28th, 2014 at 5:32 pm

    Trade 1 or 2 of them.


  2. MTU February 28th, 2014 at 5:38 pm

    “•Consensus top-five overall prospect Miguel Sano of the Twins is headed for an MRI after suffering an injury to his throwing elbow. His agent, Rob Plummer, tells Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press that he fears the worst — a torn UCL — although he makes clear that nothing is yet known for certain. Rehab is always an option, though club and player had already considered Tommy John surgery after Sano strained the ligament over the winter. The health of Sano’s elbow could have quite a significant impact on his future value, not just due to possible delays in his development, but because some already believe he will not be able to man the hot corner at the MLB level.”

    Bummer for the Twinkies and Sano.

  3. bbb51 February 28th, 2014 at 5:44 pm

    Cervelli MLB
    Murphy AAA
    Sanchez AA
    Romine trade?

  4. blake February 28th, 2014 at 5:46 pm

    @AnthonyMcCarron: Did Gary Sanchez get the ball after his homer today? “No, I’m going to get the one I hit at Yankee Stadium.”

    Love it

  5. J. Alfred Prufrock February 28th, 2014 at 5:48 pm

    Oops, Gary watch that swag. Almost sounds like “this is my house’, and we know what happened there.

  6. blake February 28th, 2014 at 5:50 pm

    Gary might hit his first one at Chase Field

  7. The Fifth Core Foursman February 28th, 2014 at 5:51 pm

    Let the Montero comparisons begin!

    Ill start. He’s Latino and therefore probably loves carbohydrate rich foods so he could get chunky. Not good. :sad:

  8. MTU February 28th, 2014 at 5:55 pm


    Sanchez for Owings.

    Who hangs up first ?

  9. Blojaldo February 28th, 2014 at 5:55 pm

    It’s just one game but if it continues and Yankee catching prospects impress and are seen as legit trade chips, it could really help this club. A good day for sure.

  10. MTU February 28th, 2014 at 5:57 pm

    “It’s just one game but if it continues and Yankee catching prospects impress and are seen as legit trade chips, it could really help this club.”

    Yup. We’re open for business.


  11. MTU February 28th, 2014 at 5:59 pm

    We’ve got relievers and Catchers out the ying yang.


  12. MTU February 28th, 2014 at 6:01 pm

    I’ve got my eye on Lewis as a possible 2nd lefty going North.


  13. MTU February 28th, 2014 at 6:03 pm

    To prevent bigger fires you need to remove the dead brush surrounding your house.


  14. MTU February 28th, 2014 at 6:04 pm

    Nah. Keep ‘em all.

    Who needs to trade.


  15. Blojaldo February 28th, 2014 at 6:06 pm

    Maybe the farm system isn’t as bad as advertised. We’ll see.

  16. bbb51 February 28th, 2014 at 6:06 pm

    MTU February 28th, 2014 at 5:55 pm

    Sanchez for Owings.

    Who hangs up first ?

    I cut the phone line.

  17. bbb51 February 28th, 2014 at 6:07 pm

    Or take out the cell tower I guess these days.

  18. MTU February 28th, 2014 at 6:09 pm


    It won’t stop the NSA.

    They are going to invade your dreams like in Inception.


  19. MTU February 28th, 2014 at 6:11 pm

    Our Farm system is on round 3.

    Give a me a Banuelos and a Flores and I’m happy for now.

    Maybe throw in a Montgomery for good measure.


  20. Giuseppe Franco February 28th, 2014 at 6:13 pm

    The farm system is indeed that bad, which is why they were forced to overspend in the offseason while still making dumpster dives like Roberts and Johnson their starters at 2B and 3B.

    A farm that’s worth it’s weight in manure would have had viable options to help at either position or used in a deal to acquire that need.

  21. MTU February 28th, 2014 at 6:17 pm

    CC, Nova, Tanaka, Pineda, Banuelos

    GGBG, Ellsbury, Flores, Beltran

    ?, ?, ?, Texeira

    McCann, Cervelli/Murphy

    D-Rob, Bailey, Thornton, Kelley, Betances, Phelps, Lewis

    Money for the IF this way.

    That is next year’s project.

  22. MTU February 28th, 2014 at 6:18 pm

    Got to run.

    Sorry. Catch you all later.

  23. blake February 28th, 2014 at 6:19 pm

    MTU says:
    February 28, 2014 at 5:55 pm

    Sanchez for Owings.

    Who hangs up first ?”

    Maybe neither

  24. braeburn February 28th, 2014 at 6:25 pm

    “Doreen…….I think we’re all going to love McCann ………”

    mccann will have to do better as a yankee than he’s done the past few years with the braves to make his contract worth it.

    i’m wondering how many people have actually taken a close look at mccann’s stats for the past two years. they weren’t that great.

    can he turn things around for the yankees with a change of scenery ? sure, but mccann actually has to step it up to meet the expectations of most yankee fans. he can’t put in two years like the last two.

    …that’s why i’m saying i’m in a wait and see mode with him.

  25. Blojaldo February 28th, 2014 at 6:41 pm

    McCann is a very good player, no one has compared him to Yogi Berra or Johnny Bench. He is a huge improvement over who we have had since Posada retired. He’s a great pickup.

  26. tomingeorgia February 28th, 2014 at 7:07 pm

    I can’t compete with the stats folks here, or the former “pro players”, either, but, then again, why should I? I’m looking forward to the season, even if there are doubts all over the place. We’re a better team than we were last year, by far. I’m not a scout nor a GM, but I think both have done a pretty good job this winter. Let’s go, Yanks!

  27. jmills February 28th, 2014 at 7:08 pm

    I like Floyd Cramer, comfy kind of piano playing. A lot of us predicting 93 wins. It better be a big prize to be able to split up. A Mars bar only goes so far, and somebody’s bound to want to fry it.

  28. jmills February 28th, 2014 at 7:11 pm

    Hi tom, my man Jacques Villeneuve will be in the Indy 500 this year. Jacques and Danica Patrick don’t get along. Good, I love Villeneuve, but….I’m ok with Danica too! :D

  29. jmills February 28th, 2014 at 7:12 pm

    tom, as a former 95 percenter in U stats, this sabermetrics crap spins me.

  30. jmills February 28th, 2014 at 7:14 pm

    Funny, ” Midnight Train to Georgia ” just came on ” – no sh!t!


  31. austinmac February 28th, 2014 at 7:27 pm


    I’ll help you with metrics. it is good if the player hits it so no one catches it. For pitchers, it is good if no one can hit your pitches.

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