TAMPA — With just over a week left of camp, the Yankees’ roster is still a work in progress.

There is the fifth-starter race and a few bullpen spots up for grabs, of course.

But the club probably has too many catchers, and there is wonder whether it has the backup infielder Brian Cashman & Co. desire.

Yankees catcher Jose TrevinoAP



The Yankees have five catchers on the 40-man roster, which is plenty, and three who have strong arguments for major league time.

Jose Trevino will be playing regularly, and 24-year-old Austin Wells has impressed both defensively and offensively this spring, posting a .997 OPS in 11 Grapefruit League games.

Ben Rortvedt has gotten off to a slower start at the plate but is a strong defensive catcher. Unlike Wells, Rortvedt has no more minor league options, so he would be exposed to waivers if he does not crack the roster.

There is still time for catchers to gain separation through performance or for injuries to settle debates, but Cashman acknowledged there is a glut.

“It’s certainly an area of depth,” the general manager said before a 10-9 win over the Blue Jays at Steinbrenner Field on Saturday. “Everybody’s actually done a great job showcasing their abilities, not just for us but for others. So clearly a dam is going to break one way or the other toward the end of camp, so we’ll see how we navigate that.



Yankees general manager Brian CashmanUSA TODAY Sports via Reuters Con

“But I’m proud of those guys and how they have gone about their business and put themselves in a really good position to have consideration because I feel like we have more than just two major league catchers sitting here in our camp.”

There is question, however, whether the Yankees have their backup infield sitting in camp.


Oswald Peraza’s shoulder injury has forced him out of a competition that includes prospects Jorbit Vivas and Jeter Downs and non-roster invite Kevin Smith.

Yankees utilityman Oswaldo CabreraAP

Oswaldo Cabrera can be used as the backup infielder, though the utilityman is expected to roam around the outfield, too.


None has run away from the rest of the competition. Smith, who can handle shortstop, might have an inside track if the Yankees want a true backup for Anthony Volpe.

But as camps wind down, other infielders will shake free of other clubs and could entice the Yankees.

“Feel like we have people we can rely on here, but any spring we’ll always look external, too,” Cashman said of the last bench spot. “So we’ll see how the rest of camp plays out elsewhere as well as trade conversations. Something that might not fit elsewhere might fit better here. I don’t know. We’ll see.”