46° Good Afternoon
46° Good Afternoon

Jonathan Holder will begin season as Yankees’ 13th pitcher

Jonathan Holder #65 of the New York Yankees

Jonathan Holder #65 of the New York Yankees pitches against the Baltimore Orioles at Yankee Stadium on Sunday, June 11, 2017 in the Bronx Borough of New York City. Photo Credit: Jim McIsaac

TAMPA, Fla. — Jonathan Holder turned out to be the last man standing.

The 24-year-old righthander earned the slot as the Yankees’ 13th pitcher, filling out the 25-man roster with which the Yankees will leave spring training Sunday night.

(There could be a change in that roster if the Yankees get bad news regarding first baseman Greg Bird, scratched from his Saturday start because of what the club called “a sore right foot.” Bird was to be evaluated later in the day Saturday by the club’s orthopedic surgeon.)

Holder, a sixth-round pick in the 2014 draft who posted a 3.89 ERA in 37 games with the Yankees last season, quietly had a standout spring training with a 1.80 ERA in seven games. He struck out 11 and did not walk a batter in 10 innings.

“Holder earned it,” said general manager Brian Cashman, who added that he could be used in a multiple-innings role if necessary.

Cashman said righthanded starters Domingo German (who pitched well in spring training) and Luis Cessa (who did not perform as well) will be stored at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre as rotation depth.

“We [figured we] would benefit keeping them on rotation and being available when and if needed,” Cashman said.

Aaron Boone said the Yankees plan to use a sixth starter April 24 against the Twins.

Boone said finalizing the 25-man roster gave him a sense of closure on spring training, which has two games left — Sunday in Port Charlotte against the Rays and Monday night in Atlanta. The regular season starts Thursday in Toronto.

“I feel like I’ve been asked a lot over the last few days, ‘Are you ready to get out of here? Are you ready to break camp?’ and my answer has been that there is a lot to do in these last days,” Boone said. “But now it feels like it’s time to go. We’ll obviously hold our breath on Greg and hope for good news there, but it does feel like after today and we set our roster, we’ll head to Atlanta tomorrow and it’s about ‘go time.’ I think we’re ready for it and I’m officially looking forward to it now.”

Impressive shot

Giancarlo Stanton hit his second homer of spring training, hammering a 1-and-2 pitch by Carlos Ramirez halfway up the scoreboard in left-center in the fifth inning in the Yankees’ 13-6 victory over the Blue Jays.

“It was good to see him clip a ball like that,” Boone said. “He’s one of those guys, once the timing clicks, it’s over. He impacts it like very few. Good to see him on time with one and really hammer one.”

Stanton, who has a .208/.333/.417 slash line, drove in Aaron Judge, who had singled.

In other action . . .

Luis Severino, in his final outing before starting the season opener, allowed two runs, two hits (including a home run) and two walks in five innings in the Yankees’ 8-3 victory over the Braves in Kissimmee. Severino, who finished spring training with a 3.38 ERA, struck out seven. Aaron Hicks had two hits, including his second homer. First-base prospect Ryan McBroom, acquired last July from Toronto for Rob Refsnyder, also hit his second homer.

No word on Frazier

Cashman declined to give a specific progress report on Clint Frazier, who has been out since Feb. 24, when he suffered a concussion making a catch against an outfield wall in Bradenton.

“He’s doing baseball activities,” Cashman said. “The whole process is you add to their endurance. When the [concussion] symptoms get created, you back off for a period, then get him going and add to the workload until they work through it, that’s what the neurologists say. He’ll be back and playing baseball eventually, but I can’t give you a time frame yet.”

Andujar at first

Cashman said third-base prospect Miguel Andujar will be on an “80-20” plan with Triple-A Scranton, meaning he’ll play 80 percent of his games at third base and 20 percent at first, a position he recently was introduced to at minor-league camp.

“We’re just trying to make sure, just like we’re doing with Stanton in left, we’re just trying to get some flexibility and versatility if need be,” Cashman said. “Just get him baptized there a little bit.”


We're revamping our Comments section. Learn more and share your input.

New York Sports