We're back with another addition of "what baseball can we talk about during the MLB lockout?"
Over the past few seasons, there have been some surprise players you never would have expected in pinstripes. This season alone, did you ever think Chicago Cubs legend, Anthony Rizzo, would be the first baseman of the New York Yankees? It'll feel like I had a fever dream when someone reminds me in a decade that Rougned Odor was the Yankees hype man in 2021.
Talkin' Yanks dropped a Sporcle link last week that asked how many Yankees could you guess from the 2017 to 2021 season. Supposedly there were 130 players who made their way onto the club's roster in those seasons.
I landed 82% of the players, which was above average, but there were some I laughed that I completely forgot about.
Some Random Yankees from 2017-2021
Erik Kratz (2017, 2020)
A journeyman catcher joined the Yankees for a couple at bats in 2017. He rejoined the Yankees organization in 2019, where he helped Scranton/Wilkes-Barre make the International League playoffs and in 2020, he was called up to the Yanks after Higashioka went down with injury. He served as Deivi Garcia's catcher, and became emotional when asked about his influence and role in helping young pitchers, particularly Latin pitchers develop their game and succeed at the major league level. He also had a nasty pitch in a brief appearance.
Neil Walker (2018)
Walker was the veteran option at both second and third base, while Gleyber Torres and Miguel Andujar were waiting in the wings. Brandon Drury occupied third base, and the rest is pretty much history. In August of that season, Walker hit a homerun from both sides of the plate in the same game for the first time in his career. That season at the trade deadline, he was also reunited with former Pirate teammate, Andrew McCutchen.
Photo: Julio Cortez, AP
Kendrys Morales (2019)
A World Series Champion for the Royals and a Silver Slugger, Morales is one of those guys you'll laugh and remember a decade later. Acquired by the A's for a PTBNL, he appeared in 19 games for the Yankees before being DFA'd. He hit a whopping 11 hits with a .177 average.
Photo: Fred Thornhill/The Canadian Press via AP
Edwin Encarnación (2019)
The Parrot. Shortly after the Morales experiment, the Yankees traded for Encarnación, and sent the Mariners minor league pitcher, Juan Then. He became
scoring 33 runs on 44 hits, with 37 RBI' and 13 homeruns. Unfortunately, he fractured his wrist in August and was on the IL. In the playoffs, he went 1-for-18 with a .56 batting average. He could've been the absolute difference maker in that postseason.
Photo: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images
Well, have at it! How many can you get?