What Happens in the Playoffs if Posada Goes on the DL?

There seems to be quite a bit of panic since the Yankees made the announcement yesterday that Jorge Posada was suffering from concussion symptoms. What happens if his concussion lingers and the Yankees are forced to use Francisco Cervelli and Chad Moeller? Well the sky will fall. Or will it?

The playoff roster eligibility rules stat that the Yankees are only allowed to use players in the playoffs that were on the 25-man roster as of mid-night August 31 with the exception of players on the DL, on the bereavement list, and suspended players.

There is another exception that would allow the Yankees to call-up Jesus Montero and use him in the playoffs if Posada lands on the DL. The rules state that if a player goes on the DL, a team is allowed to use any player in their system. That goes for players in the minor leagues including those not on the 40-man roster. So in the unlikely scenario Montero could be activated and play in October.

Obviously the Yankees don’t want to do this for two reasons. The first is that they would prefer a healthy Posada. Say what you will about his defense, but in the playoffs his experience outweighs anything Montero could do for you. Montero is shaky defensively to start and if he’s thrust into the pressure of the playoffs he’s prone to a rookie mistake that could end up costing the Yankees everything they’ve worked for.

Also, the Yankees want to keep Montero off the 40-man roster. The reason for this is because they have a lot of players that need to be protected from the Rule 5 draft this offseason. Montero doesn’t have enough service time in the minors so he is automatically protected. Putting him on the 40-man now would mean that there would be one more player susceptible to being plucked by another team.

Those are the biggest reasons. There are others, but keeping Montero out of a big spot where his defense could be exploited and keeping him off the 40-man roster are the two biggest.

Still, if needed, the Yankees could turn to him instead of being forced to go with a Cervelli/Moeller combo in October.

(Thanks to The Detroit Tigers Weblog for help with this post).

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One Response to What Happens in the Playoffs if Posada Goes on the DL?

  1. Mike S. says:

    An excellent and tragic example is the case of the 1940 Cincinnati Reds. On August 3, 1940, backup C Willard Hershberger committed suicide in his hotel room in Boston. Late in the season, starting C Ernie Lombardi got injured. Lombardi played in two games in the series, going 1 for 3 with a double. Coach Jimmy Wilson, 40, was activated soon after Hershberger's suicide. He played in 16 games down the stretch. He caught six of the seven games in the WS and went 6 for 17 as the Reds won the Series.