When the Yankees acquired Dustin Ackley before the trade deadline, the fans questioned what the team was planning to do with him considering Joe Girardi and the Yankees had barely given him any playing time over the last three games. The Yankees stuck with Stephen Drew at second base and have played either Carlos Beltran or Chris Young in right field. So why did the Yankees trade for Ackley if they’re not using him right away?
“I think it just gives Joe Girardi more flexibility from the bench,” Brian Cashman said when asked about Ackley’s specific role on the team. “Especially from the defensive side, with at the very least similar offensive production (compared to Garrett Jones) right now, with some upside as well as control years going forward if we so choose. It just gives us a little more flexibility, a little more youth as we move forward. Again, it’ll provide Joe a lot more flexibility and a better defensive profile.”
The Yankees failed to use Dustin Ackley during the three game series against the Chicago White Sox and even had a perfect opportunity yesterday afternoon; Joe Girardi took Carlos Beltran out of the game after scoring nine runs by the fifth inning but Chris Young got the call instead. Ackley seems more likely to have a role down the line, but as Brian Cashman said, Ackley provides the team depth off the bench, and he could be that guy the team uses when there’s a dire defensive situation in the thick of the playoff hunt.
The Yankees and Ackley can still get to know each other, considering Ackley has two years of team control and won’t be a huge investment, but don’t be too surprised if the Yankees don’t use Ackley a lot down the stretch; they’re trying to punch their ticket to the 2015 postseason and need all their regulars to play.