(Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
In a move that was expected, Francisco Cervelli will open the season as the backup for catcher Brian McCann. Austin Romine, who was battling with Cervelli and John Ryan Murphy for the roster spot, will be sent down to the minors.
Cervelli has had a torrid spring, bouncing back nicely from a myriad of injuries in 2013 which also saw him ultimately suspended for his role in the Biogenesis debacle. He’s hit a robust .455/.500/.909 with four homers and seven RBI in 33 at-bats, cementing his spot on the team.
There were doubts, however, that Cervelli would break camp and still be a member of the Yankees. With their wealth of catching prospects, Cervelli’s been linked to various trade rumors – and since the organization needs upgrades elsewhere, many thought he was expendable.
Cervelli will help give McCann days off, and might even become the personal catcher for Masahiro Tanaka; Cervelli has caught nearly all of Tanaka’s starts this spring. There is always a chance Cervelli’s stock rises even more as the regular season progresses and the trade deadline gets closer, forcing the Yankees to sell high to a team that’s desperate for catching. But for now, the 28-year-old will look to have a bounce-back season in the Bronx.
As expected, Austin Romine was optioned to Triple A , leaving Cervelli as the backup catcher
— Erik Boland (@eboland11) March 26, 2014