After the New York Yankees won their game on Friday night against the Texas Rangers, they made the move to designate Chris Carter for assignment and call Tyler Austin up to the majors.
With Carter hitting just .204 with eight home runs and 23 RBI, he was a strikeout waiting to happen. His last at bat for the Yankees was in fact, a strikeout, and in a big spot too. That last strikeout may have been the final straw in Carter’s time with the Yankees, as he was immediately sent packing after the game.
With Austin hitting .316 in the minors, he finally got the chance to be recalled to the major leagues. It was a move that made sense and one many fans were hoping for.
Now that Carter is off the team and with Greg Bird continuing to deal with injuries, Tyler Austin has a tremendous opportunity to solidify the first base job for the Yankees. On year ago, Austin showed glimpses of what he can do at the big league level. In 31 games, Austin hit .241 with five home runs and 12 RBI for the Yankees. Some thought he could make the Yankees initial roster in 2017, but a fractured foot landed him on the disabled list to start the season.
Now that he’s fully recovered and back in baseball, Austin has been given the opportunity to play with the Yankees on an everyday basis. Because of the circumstances, Austin has the first baseman’s job for the Yankees. At least for now. Sure, Matt Holliday may get sprinkled in from time to time. But for now, Tyler Austin will get every chance to show that he can stick in the majors.
But if not, then he could be the deciding factor in if Brian Cashman makes a trade come next month. With a little over a month to go until the trade deadline, New York has a prime opportunity to compete for the American League East. With them and the Boston Red Sox in a deadlock for the division, the Yankees may need more firepower for the second half.
A few names have already been floated as possible options. Todd Frazier of the Chicago White Sox has been talked about for both first and third base. Eric Hosmer of the Kansas City Royals has been talked about as well.
Other potential options in the short term are Yonder Alonso of the Oakland A’s, Mike Napoli of the Texas Rangers and Lucas Duda of the New York Mets.
All of them are potential free agents and shouldn’t cost the Yankees an arm and a leg in a deal. Although, Alonso might cost more considering Billy Beane doesn’t like to make trades with the Yankees. But all are potential options that the Yankees could consider for first base.
But for the time being, Tyler Austin is going to get his opportunity to show the Yankees. If he performs like he did in Scranton, then maybe a trade for a first baseman isn’t needed. But if Austin struggles at the big league level, then the smart money is on Brian Cashman making a trade next month for some help.