Thanks in part to his ability to play both the corner outfield and first base, Jay Bruce has put himself in the running to make the Yankees’ roster, Kristie Ackert of the New York Daily News writes. The Yankees may have to decide in the next week whether to give a spot to Bruce, who can opt out of the minor league contract he signed on March 25. Bruce isn’t on the Yankees’ 40-man roster, which is full, so they will have to make a corresponding move if they do add him. That could spell bad news for another outfielder, the out-of-options Mike Tauchman. While Tauchman unexpectedly thrived as both a hitter and defender in his first year as a Yankee in 2019, his production dipped on both ends last season. Tauchman did post a .342 on-base percentage in 111 plate appearances, but it came with a .242 batting average and almost no power (.305 slugging percentage, .063 ISO and zero home runs). Then again, Bruce didn’t exactly hold his own as a Phillie last year, when the veteran power hitter slashed .192/.252/.469 with six HRs over 103 PA.
- Good news for the Reds’ bullpen: Left-hander Amir Garrett will pitch in his first spring training game of the year Saturday, C. Trent Rosecrans of The Athletic tweets. Forearm soreness has slowed Garrett, perhaps the favorite to close for the Reds if he’s healthy. The 28-year-old notched a 2.45 ERA/2.82 SIERA and fanned hitters at a massive 37.7 percent rate across 18 1/3 innings in 2020.
- With Carlos Carrasco reportedly to miss six to eight weeks because of a torn hamstring, the Mets are stretching lefty Mike Montgomery out and considering him as a swingman, Anthony DiComo of MLB.com relays. Montgomery, whom the Mets signed to a minors pact, has racked up 183 appearances and 70 starts since he debuted in 2013. The former Mariner, Cub and Royal has combined for a respectable 3.84 ERA during his 541-inning career, though his ERA hovered around the 5.00 mark in each of the previous two seasons.
- Mariners reliever Andres Munoz suffered a “little setback” in his recovery from Tommy John surgery a few weeks ago and hasn’t taken the mound since, manager Scott Servais told Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times and other reporters. Munoz underwent the procedure almost exactly one year ago (March 20, 2020), and the Padres then dealt him to the Mariners in a seven-player trade last August. Considering how long it takes to return from TJ surgery, Munoz wasn’t likely to debut with the Mariners until sometime this summer, but now it appears they may have to wait a bit longer. Still just 22, Munoz impressed in his first season, 2019, when he pitched to a 3.91 ERA/3.72 SIERA in 23 innings, struck out 30.9 percent of batters and averaged 99.9 mph on his fastball.