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Tuesday, December 17, 2013
Roster reset: Roberts in, Reynolds next?

By Andrew Marchand



The New York Yankees have agreed on a $2 million, one-year deal with Brian Roberts, adding him to the post-Robinson Cano second-base mix. At this point, the injury-prone Roberts will compete with Dean Anna and Kelly Johnson for the spot, with the position ultimately being manned by a combination of these players or a yet-to-be-added infielder.

But the Yankees could re-sign Mark Reynolds next, with the hope of platooning him with Johnson at third. The two would offer Alex Rodriguez suspension/injury protection.

With Reynolds starting against lefties and Johnson against righties, the Yankees would have a power-hitting but defensively deficient combo. Still, it might not be bad.

Here is an issue that will work itself out via trade and/or injuries by the end of spring training. You can only have 25 players on the roster. So let's take a look, going on the assumption the Yankees will have 11 pitchers when they break spring training and head north -- or west, as they begin the season in Houston. For this exercise, we will keep A-Rod suspended. This would be the rest of the projected roster, including Roberts and Reynolds.

12. Brian McCann, C
13. Francisco Cervelli, C
14. Mark Teixeira, 1B
15. Derek Jeter, SS
16. Brendan Ryan, SS/2B
17. Carlos Beltran, OF
18. Jacoby Ellsbury, OF
19. Brett Gardner, OF
20. Alfonso Soriano, OF
21. Ichiro Suzuki, OF
22. Kelly Johnson, 2B/3B/OF
23. Mark Reynolds, 3B/3B
24. Brian Roberts, 2B
25. Dean Anna, 2B/SS/3B

That would leave Vernon Wells off the team. Wells or Ichiro figure to be on the outs if Gardner remains with the club. They actually both could be off the roster because you don't need five outfielders; especially since Johnson can play out there, as well.

Who is going to pitch? That remains a question mark, but maybe Masahiro Tanaka, if he is posted.