Yankees’ Aaron Judge Has Spoken, Wants Anthony Volpe In The Lineup
Well, it appears that the Yankee captain has finally slammed his gavel–Judge wants Volpe in the starting lineup.
In an interview on Wednesday, March 8th, Judge had only the best things to say about the 21-year-old Yankee prospect.
“I think he’s got all the makeup tools,” Judge said. “He checks a lot of boxes -- defensively, offensively. He’s a tough at-bat. He’s got the speed, which is a big factor now in the game. My thing has always been, if you’re the best player, it shouldn’t matter your age. You should be up helping the New York Yankees. It doesn’t matter if you’re 19 or 41. If you’re the best guy for the job, you should be playing.”
Big words from a big man–while Judge certainly isn’t the one calling the shots in the Bronx, he sure does have a say in things. If the $400 million man wants Volpe, then let’s see the kid play!
I’d much rather have Volpe, the #5 prospect in the Yankees farm system, playing at short than the .261-hitting Isaih Kiner-Falefa. Volpe has made 20 plate appearances so far across six spring training games and he’s already putting merit behind Judge’s words. He’s hitting .353 with a home run and two doubles, and he’s scored five runs as well.
How The Yankees Have Utilized Their Prospects In The Past
A few years ago, there was a bit of a youth movement in the Bronx. Between 2016-2018, the Yankees experimented greatly with their youngsters. We saw Miguel Andujar, Gary Sanchez, Gleyber Torres, Domingo German, Jonathan Loisiaga, Tyler Wade, and Clint Frazier all make their MLB debuts. Sure, not all of them panned out–but it’s much better than what we’ve seen in the last few years, which was headlined by Deivi Garcia and Ron Marrinacio.
However, last year alone, we saw the Yankees call up Oswaldo Cabrera and Oswaldo Peraza, which brought much-needed youth to an aging lineup. Both prospects even saw playing time in the postseason, which I’m sure will help both of their careers in the long run.
Yankee fans all expected to see at least Cabrera and Peraza in the lineup in 2023, but were unpleasantly surprised when the aforementioned Kiner-Falefa was presumed to be the starter over Peraza, and Aaron Hicks over Cabrera. The youth movement seemed dead, and that rubbed many the wrong way.
Yet if the Yankees were smart, and the jury is still out on whether or not they are, they would listen to their captain and go with Volpe.
If there’s one thing I hate most, it’s teams that don’t let their old players go, and in turn, don’t let their young ones play. There is only one motive behind starting Aaron Hicks–and that’s to try and save face when it comes to the monstrosity of a contract that they gave him. The problem with that, though, is that we all already know that the Hicks deal was a bad one. The same goes for Kiner-Falefa and Josh Donaldson–let the bad deal be bad, and let them move on.
Look at what the Mets did with Pete Alonso. He had a great spring and they didn’t bother waiting–they called him right up to the big leagues, and he hasn’t looked back since. Juan Soto is another case where it worked out, considering he was just 19 years old when the Nationals gave him the call.
It’s time for the Yankees to trust their youth, and listen to Judge’s advice.
Yankees World Series Odds
The Yankees currently have the second-best odds to win the 2023 World Series, sitting at +750 just behind the Astros (at +600). Those odds, according to DraftKings Sportsbook, could definitely move if they decide to take a bit of a youth movement in 2023.