Suddenly there’s no place for Jacoby Ellsbury

If Jacoby Ellsbury got hurt approximately two weeks ago, it would be easy to find a spot for him upon his return. The obvious choice would have been Brett Gardner, since he was hitting .188 prior to the Yankees six game homestand.

Unfortunately for Ellsbury, Gardner has been hitting over .300 since the homestand, which included a three-run home run on Friday afternoon and two hits in Saturday’s 11-6 blowout win against the Chicago Cubs. Suddenly taking Gardner out seems to be a difficult decision, especially with Jon Lester on the mound for tonight’s series finale.

But the Yankees could take Aaron Judge or Aaron Hicks out for Ellsbury, right?

Well…not really.

Judge is a mainstay fixture in right field, and Hicks has been hitting on all cylinders over the last month. In laments terms, taking Hicks out of the lineup is simply out of the question.

“I feel good,” Hicks said after Saturday’s game. “I feel like my plate appearances have been better. I have more of an idea of what I want to do in every at-bat and it’s working out so far.”

So where will Ellsbury get his playing time once he’s ready to return to the Yankees lineup?

The Yankees will try to rotate all of the outfielders so Hicks can get a fair amount of playing time, meaning either Ellsbury or Gardner will sit against a left handed pitcher. However, Ellsbury’s health is raising concern. Ellsbury is putting up some of his best numbers as a Yankee this season, but four years into his seven year contract leaves plenty of people skeptical about his offensive production.

If Ellsbury isn’t ready for tonight’s game against the Cubs, it’s possible he could see some playing time against the Cincinnati Reds in their two-game series. However, one thing is certain; Hicks will play in one of the two games, and depending on how Ellsbury is feeling or performing, he could be the one that sits on the bench.

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12 Responses to Suddenly there’s no place for Jacoby Ellsbury

  1. Jim says:

    Keep trying to find a trade partner for Ellsbury. Unloading his contract would be a very large positive. Maybe the Dodgers would go for it? Don't need anything more than a bag of balls in return or maybe a low A or lower prospects and we throw in some cash.

    His contract has 3 more seasons after this one and an option for a 4th or $5 million buyout.

  2. KennyH123 says:

    Laments terms??

  3. Terry says:

    The entire starting OF since Ells went down has been awesome. So you're right. Where do you play him? If it's me, I'm going with the OFs that are starting now and working Ells in here'n there. Which at 22 mill probably won't happen. Finding a trade partner will be hard as he's still over paid. You would either have to kick in a good chunk or take on another equally bad type of contract i.e. Eithier of the Dodgers. There could be one out there, I can't come up with one off the top of my head. If he starts putting up better numbers, then he gets more attractive but if he does, they might just keep him. Strange situation , damned if you do, damned if you don't

  4. tom says:

    Send him to Nationals and cover 4/5 of his contract for one top prospect. And then move on.

    Frazier and Fowler may be sobbing uncontrollably. lol. Didi, Castro and Hicks' turnarounds are legit? I did not see that coming.

  5. Thomas says:

    It's a long season and Gardner will hurt something sliding into first. I would sit Ellsbury or Gardner against all lefties and sit Hicks against righties. Judge could use a blow every once in awhile. Ellsbury has been playing better of late but at all-star game, you will have a feel of what needs to be done.

    • Olie says:

      For those that have not noticed, for the last couple of years Gardner always sits against the tough left handers.Would be surprised to see Gardner leadoff against Leister if Ellsbury healthy tonight!

  6. Nunzio says:

    Yankees are a team that are playing together , this complete or partial rebuild has to continue, Ellsbury has been doing his part but for a long time he has been so so, the character of this team is not what has been here it's about the new young players that are establishing themselves and about the young players that are coming up, Ellsbury is old news it's all about what is driving this team and it's called Sanchez, Judge, Bird, and all the rest that want to push there way to the top.

  7. Balt Yank says:

    Trading Ellsbury is not realistic and as one commentor noted, Gardner will get hurt at some point, Hicks could cool down, and Judge may need a few days off. The smart money is have Ellsbury get 450 or so at-bats, well rested, and hit 300 for the season. Then, in the offseason, maybe he can be traded for a CC Sabathia type, an overpaid number five pitcher with an upside to # 4 to replace CC's spot and clear up the outfield. PS: I had faith in Gardner and I am glad he's hitting now. He's clutch, something Ellsbury and AROD never have been with the Yankees.

  8. Tommy says:

    All 4 of these guys are guys that i wouldnt be too suprised to get injured or just suddenly stop producing. So, in that case if im Girardi, what I do is see when and where they are comfortable and wait it out changing the lineup and using Hicks especially as platoon guys but other times starting.

  9. Tommy says:

    Also Ellsbury just homered and Gardener has been on a tear and well you should know Aaron Judge,

  10. ERIC PELLIS says:

    Simple solution! Play all four at the same time. Release Carter and have Holliday play 1st base until Bird is ready. This solves many problems by making the lineup much stronger and having all four guys take a day as DH. By releasing Carter and bringing up another outfielder it would give Girardi much more flexibility with the roster.

  11. tbirdfrank says:

    Hate to tell you Ells haters. He is the starting center fielder. He won't be reduced if healthy. He's actually playing really we'll this year. Great defense. Good hitting and great on base %. Hicks is just hot, finally, and Gardner is Ells light. Always has been. Ells has come down a bit from his Sox days when u could never compare Gardner to him. Live with it.

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