By Brendan Kuty
TAMPA, Fla. — The Yankees might look to bring a middle reliever from outside the organization, according to the MLB Network’s Jon Heyman.
The back end of the Yankees’ bullpen might be the best in the league, with Aroldis Chapman serving as closer and Andrew Miller and Dellin Betances setting him up. The club also seems to expect Chasen Shreve to fill a mid- to late-inning role.
But Chapman won’t be around until May 9, thanks to a 30-game domestic violence suspension.
So the team has to fill his spot in their bullpen until he returns. It has spent the spring whittling down the number of relievers in camp, and it sliced another two off the major-league spring roster Saturday, sending youngsters Nick Rumbelow and James Pazos to minor league camp.
The Yankees don’t seem all too enamored with what they have in camp. Bryan Mitchell has pitched well, but he could open the season in the Triple-A rotation. He could also end up taking the club’s swingman role, which Adam Warren filled admirably until he was dealt to the Cubs for second baseman Starlin Castro in the offseason.
At the moment, Kirby Yates, Tyler Olson, Branden Pinder and Johnny Barbato seem like the leaders to fill the clubâs final two or three spots the Yankees have open.
General manager Brian Cashman has said the team will continue to stay in contact with other clubs, looking to see if it could pick away another teamâs player if heâs better than what the Yankees have.