Yankee Outlook 2024 as Spring Training Ends

The bummer of Spring Training 2024 was that defending Cy Young winner Gerrit Cole came down with elbow inflammation and has been shut down for 4-6 weeks to start the season. The good news was that the MRI showed no structural damage; so now Yankee fans cross their fingers and hope Cole returns and is fully healthy with rest.

Other worrisome news of this Spring Training: Nestor Cortes pitched to an 8.10 ERA in 10 innings. Cortes threw strongly and said he felt fine so that is good news. He starts opening day and Yankee fans will be crossing their fingers and hoping this season isn’t a replay of last year with Cortes, when he started good but by end of April couldn’t get out of the 5th inning regularly, until he shut it down.

A Lot of Good News this Spring

But the good news has outweighed all that:

  • Juan Soto looked Great — he looks like The perfect fit for this lineup.
  • Anthony Volpe batted .314 in the Spring with a .364 OBP.
  • Gleyber Torres — heading into a contract year — batted .356 with a .444 OBP.
  • Anthony Rizzo batted .389 in Spring Training with a .488 OBP, and a much slimmed down Giancarlo Stanton batted .317 with a .370 OBP.
  • Austin Wells batted .300 with a .391 OBP.
  • Carlos Rodon had some poor starts but more than made up for it late in Spring Training and finished with a 2.93 ERA. Luis Gil is back and was lights out (2.31 ERA) — he may be the #5 starter as the season starts. Clayton Beeter also looked good (3.46 ERA) — he may be the #6 starter.

It’s just Spring Training but you like the fact that the Yankee batters are ripping the ball.

Aaron Judge missed some games with a slightly pulled abs muscle and batted .208 in Spring Training. Judge is still in his prime at 32 years old this year — one hopes he stays healthy and has another big year.

Spencer Jones lit up Spring Training with his hitting and overall play. He starts the year in AAA but looked so good one might expect him called up late this yr. With The Martian Jasson Dominguez is coming back in late August, Yanks look like they have Future set.

Here’s the post-Spring Training breakdown of the 2024 Yankees:

The Lineup

Is projected to look like this — can you say “Balanced”?

Hitter (age this year) Position Bats
1 DJ LeMahieu (35) 3B R
2 Juan Soto (25) RF L
3 Aaron Judge (32) CF R
4 Anthony Rizzo (34) 1B L
5 Gleyber Torres (27) 2B R
6 Alex Verdugo (28) LF L
7 Giancarlo Stanton (34) DH R
8 Jose Trevino (31)/Austin Wells (24) C R/L
9 Anthony Volpe (23) SS R

Juan Soto, age 25, looks like the Perfect fit for this lineup. Because he walks so much, he will hit #2 in the lineup, before Aaron Judge, pushing Judge back to the #3 spot which is something Judge has been asking for.


Aaron Judge is 32 and in his prime. Giancarlo Stanton showed up to Spring training much trimmed down and hit well — he and Soto led the Yanks in HR’s with 4 each.

Into the Future

Spencer Jones, 6’6 lefty bat and only 23, looks like he is going to be a big-time player. Like Judge, he hits with power and to all fields. He’ll start the season in AA or AAA and there’s a chance we’ll see him at the end of this season. When The Martian Jasson Dominguez (just turned 21 yrs old; lefty bat) returns in late summer, the Yanks will be setup in the outfield now and into the future.

The Starting Rotation

  1. Gerrit Cole, RH, 6’4, age 33 — will miss the first 6 weeks of the season. Reigning Cy Young Award winner was 15-4 2.63 last yr.
  2. Carlos Rodon, LH, 6’2, age 31 — looked good at end of Spring Training. Was 3-8 6.85 last yr in a season of injury. Was 14-8 2.88 in 2022.
  3. Nestor Cortes, LH, 5’11, age 29 — pitched to 8.10 ERA in Spring Training. Is opening day starter. Was 5-2 4.97 before going on shelf last year. Was 12-4 2.44 in 2022.
  4. Marcus Stroman, RH, 5’7, age 33 — looked pretty good in Spring Training. Was 10-9 3.95 for Cubs last yr. Grew up Yankee fan.
  5. Clarke Schmidt, RH, 6’1, age 28 — came into his own last yr; 9-9 4.64 after dreadful 2-5 5.58 start to season.
  6. Clayton Beeter, RH, 6’2, age 25 — pitched pretty well in Spring Training. Was 6-2 2.08 in AA last yr, & 3-5 4.94 in AAA.

Insurance Starters:

Aka the legion of 6’2 righties:

  • Luke Weaver, RH, 6’2, age 30 — former top young arm; looked great for Yanks at end of last yr.

Starting the Season in the Minors:

  • Luis Gil, RH, 6’2, age 25 — starts year in minors to get starts until he’s needed. Looked great in Spring Training. Is coming back off Tommy John surgery.
  • Will Warren, RH, 6’2, age 25 — was 7-4 3.61 in AAA Scranton last year — starts year in minors.
  • Chase Hampton, RH, 6’2, age 22 — a top prospect; the 6’2 righty should be in AAA this yr — starts year in minors.


Gone from last year are Michael King (to San Diego as major part of the Soto deal), Luis Severino (signed with the Mets), Domingo German (still unsigned at this writing), Jhony Brito (to San Diego as part of Soto deal), and Randy Vasquez. (also to SD as part of Soto deal). Also Frankie Montas. Remember him? He signed with the Reds (just like Sonny Gray did to resuscitate his career after failing with the Yanks.

The Bullpen

Starting the Season in the Minors:


Gone from last year are Wandy Peralta (signed with the SD Padres), Albert Abreu (signed with the Seibu Lions of the Japanese league), Jimmy Cordero (signed with the Chiba Lotte Marines of the Japanese league), Deivi Garcia (signed with the ChiSox), and others.



Gone from last year is Kyle Higashioka.

1st Base

2nd Base

3rd Base


  • Anthony Volpe, 23, Righty bat — the Gold Glove winner. Looked good as rook; except must raise avg from .209. Batted .317 in Spring Training 2024.

Backup Infielders

  • Oswaldo Cabrera, 25, Infielder/Outfielder, Switch hitter
  • Jon Berti, 34, Infielder, Righty bat. Slashed 7-33-.294 (.344 OBP) in 424 at bats last year for Miami. Yanks traded for him the day before 2024 season began in 3-team trade that included Rays — NY giving up Ben Rortvedt — after Oswald Peraza got injured.
  • Oswald Peraza, 24, Infielder, righty bat. Starts season on injured list.

Starting the Season in the Minors:

  • Jorbit Vivas, 23, Infielder, lefty bat picked up from LA Dodgers for Trey Sweeney — Starts year in minors.
  • Jordan Groshans, 23, 3B, righty bat claimed off waivers from Toronto — Starts year in minors.
  • Jeter Downs, 25, SS — the one-time elite prospect (#44 in MLB Top 100 for 2020) who was a core part of the Red Sox Mookie Betts trade to LA, and was named after Derek Jeter. Didn’t make it in Boston, or Washington afterwards, and Yanks picked him up off waivers during the winter. Starts year in minors.

Gone from the Infield

Gone from the infield from last year are Isiah Kiner-Falefa (signed with Toronto), and Josh Donaldson (traded near end of year). Ben Rortvedt was traded to the Rays in a 3-team trade that also included Miami just before the season started; the Yanks picking up Jon Berti. Rortvedt was out of options and Yanks needed infielder after Peraza was injured toward end of Spring Training.


Right Field


  • Aaron Judge, 32, righty bat — Still in his prime. He wants to play center, but Yanks should give him some rest in right field too, moving Soto to DH on those days. Judge shoulda won several Gold Gloves by now.

Left Field

  • Juan Soto, 25, lefty bat — perfect fit for lineup. Must show he can play D in right.


  • Trent Grisham, 27, centerfielder, Lefty bat.
  • Jahmai Jones, 26, left fielder, righty bat — Yanks picked up off waivers from Milwaukee in late February.

Starting the Season in the Minors:

  • Everson Pereira, 23, outfielder, righty bat — starts the season in the minors.
  • Greg Allen, 31, centerfielder, switch hitter. Yanks love this guy — starts the season in the minors.


  • The Martian Jasson Dominguez, 21, centerfielder, lefty bat — due in late August. Looked Great last year before the injury.
  • Spencer Jones, 23, lefty bat — will start the year in AA or AAA. Brian Cashman said many other teams keep asking for Spencer. Has 5-tool talent. Hits HR’s; hits to all fields; stole 40 bases in minors last year.
Aaron Judge (6’7) and Spencer Jones (6’6).


Gone from last year is Jake Bauers (now with Milwaukee), Harrison Bader (traded before season ended, and signed with Mets), Willie Calhoun (signed with LA Angels), Franchy Cordero (signed with the Seibu Lions of the Japanese league), and Billy McKinney (traded to Pittsburgh for International Bonus Pool money).


  • Giancarlo Stanton, 34, righty bat. Came into Spring Training much slimmed down to avoid muscle pulls and hopefully increase bat speed/batting average. He batted .191 last year (in an era of historically low batting averages). Batted .317 in Spring Training while tying for team lead in homers with 4.



  • If Cole comes back in May and is healthy and stays healthy, and Cortes does well, the starting pitching, the starting pitching will be a strength. Rodon looked good at end of Spring Training. Many Yank fans wanted NY to sign or trade for another elite starter (like Blake Snell, Jordan Montgomery, or Dylan Cease), but with the lively baseball that results in everyone and their mother striking out 10 in 5 innings, starting pitching seems overvalued. The Yanks pulled good starting pitchers out of their ass last year. This year, Luis Gil and Clayton Beeter both looked prime to do well as starters.
  • The bullpen will be a strength again.
  • The lineup is rocking.
  • The infield defense should be superb.


  • Age is creeping in with LeMahieu at 35. Rizzo and Stanton are both 34 but that is still in the window of a hitter’s best years, albiet at the back end in the non-steroid era. But there’s a ton of youth to counter that.
  • You’d like to see more production from 3rd base — LeMahieu is pressed in as the everyday 3rd baseman this year and his true-value position has always been 2nd base. But he can pick it and his 15-44-.243 (.327 OBP) last year is, incredibly, better than it seems in this era of historically low batting averages.
  • Judge in centerfield doesn’t seem ideal but he can play the position well and it opens up rightfield for Soto. Soto needs to show he can play a decent outfield.
  • Clay Holmes can be fantastic as a closer, and not fantastic as a closer — depending on if his sinker is sinking. Some fans have speculated the Yanks need a more consistent deadly closer. Not sure if there are any out there better than Holmes.
  • Then of course there is the competition — Baltimore is stacked with exciting young players and picked up Corbin Burnes to head their rotation this off season. Tampa always wins 100 games it seems.

Early Prediction

100 wins.

Yanks only were 82-80 last year but that was no ordinary 82-80 season. They were decimated by injuries. We had predicted them for 102 wins.

This year they look even more awesome with the addition of Soto, with Gleyber in his contract year, with a seemingly revitalized Rodon, and with Volpe looking like he can hit for a higher average. Can they increase their win total by 18 wins? They decreased it by 17 last year (having won 99 in 2022).

So we predict 100 wins. We had them for 102 before Spring Training, but the injury to Cole and Cortes’s 8.10 Spring ERA provide some worry. Again all of it based on their other players staying reasonably healthy.

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