Francisco Cervelli Returns To New York Yankees
Francisco Cervelli is officially off of the 60-day disabled list and back on the Yankees’ active roster. Sidelined since April, a healthy Cervelli will be assuming his role as backup catcher. To make room on the roster, NY has sent down catcher, John Ryan Murphy, to Triple A. Will the return help the Bombers climb the AL East standings? These stats may sway your mind in answering YES.
With Francisco Cervelli returning to the Yankees’ lineup today, the team had to option current backup catcher, John Ryan Murphy, to the minor leagues. At 36-33, the Yankees are just 3.5 games behind the division leaders and tonight’s opponent, the Toronto Blue Jays. The minor shakeup in the roster could very well ignite the Yankees and possibly takeover the standings with just 25 games left until the All-Star break.
Murphy’s bat has been ice-cold in the month of June. Going 2-17 this month, Murphy hasn’t walked a single time and his on-base percentage has dipped to .308% in a total of 63 at-bats. His glove hasn’t done well, either. The Yankees are just 9-15 in games which Murphy has played in, and 7-10 during his starts. The pitching ERA is 3.83 while John Ryan is catching in 159.2 innings. Three passed balls have also missed the mitt.
While Cerveilli’s playing time has been limited due to various injuries, when he’s healthy, the Yankees prosper. Health being key, Cervelli had a broken hand and an elbow injury in 2013. A broken foot and a concussion took playing time away in the prior season. This year, a hamstring injury put Cervelli on the shelf back on April 13th. When not banged up, Cervelli boasts a career on-base percentage of .340. In 17 games as a catcher last season, his OBP was .377 in 52 at-bats. Behind the plate, starters were 10-6 with a 3.13 ERA and he let zero passed balls through. His Spring stats were phenomenal – hitting .405 in 37 AB, Cervelli’s OBP was .450 and he also knocked in four home runs. Quite the step up from Murphy.
He may just be a role playing, backup catcher, but if the injury bug doesn’t bite Francisco Cervelli for the rest of the season, the Yankees may chalk up an extra win or two and contend for a playoff spot. Missing the playoffs by seven games in 2013, every win will help in 2014 if the Yankees plan to be part of the post-season.