Brooklyn-bred Dellin Betances called it a dream come true as he put on his Yankee uniform as a member of the big squad for the first time. Betances, the 6-foo-8 starting giant, sat at his locker and looked as happy as a little kid who just got his first PSP.
"I still can't believe I'm here," the 23-year-old Betances said.
Derek Jeter, whom Betances watched from the old Yankee Stadium stands, came over to his locker and gave him one of those athlete handshake, half-hug things and Betances took it all in.
Yankees manager Joe Girardi didn't have definitive plans on how he would use Betances, but it doesn't sound like it will be often, if at all. Girardi is not planning on starting Betances and noted that Betances has never pitched out of the bullpen. The scenario Girardi presented that he could use Betances is if he needs a long man and he has plenty of time to warm up.
At Double-A, Betances was 4-6 with a 3.42 ERA. At Triple-A, he was 0-3 with a 5.14 ERA.
"I feel like it was definitely a grind, a battle, an up-and-down year," Betances said. "I was just inconsistent. It is one of those things that I'm working on mechanically. I feel a lot better now. It was one of those years. An up-and-down year, but I definitely accomplished my goals to get here and stay healthy."
To get ready in case the Yankees need him to pitch, Betances played catch with his brother Anthony in the street in front of his house in Teaneck on Thursday.
For more on Betances, here is my story from the spring.