The Yankees announced that outfielder Greg Allen has elected free agency after clearing outright waivers. New York had designated him for assignment on Tuesday when bringing up rookies Everson Pereira and Oswald Peraza from Triple-A.
Allen has had a pair of stints in the Bronx. After suiting up for 15 games two seasons ago, he returned to the organization in May when the Yanks acquired him in a minor trade with Boston. Allen rather quickly thereafter suffered a strained hip flexor that cost him more than a month and a half. He returned in late July and operated in a fourth/fifth outfield capacity until this week’s DFA.
The switch-hitting Allen tallied 28 plate appearances over 22 games this time around. He picked up four extra-base hits, including a homer, while striking out 10 times. The former fifth-round pick has now appeared in seven straight MLB campaigns, working mostly in a depth capacity. He’s a .231/.300/.340 hitter in 828 career plate appearances. Allen has an excellent .292/.403/.433 batting line through parts of five seasons at the Triple-A level.
A plus runner, Allen has 48 stolen bases in 57 attempts at the major league level. That’s an 84.2% success rate that’s nearly five percentage points better than this year’s league average (despite the fact that the bulk of Allen’s attempts came before the introduction of the more favorable rules for baserunners last offseason). That speed gives him the ability to cover all three outfield positions, though public defensive metrics suggest he’s better suited for work in the corners than center field.
Active rosters expand from 26 to 28 players at the start of September. Clubs are required to bring up at least one position player as part of that expansion, leading some to roster a pinch-running specialist for the stretch run. Allen could hold some appeal in such a role. If he finds another landing spot before end of day on August 31, he’d be eligible for postseason play with his new employer.