Pitchers and catchers officially report Tuesday for the New York Yankees, which means Gary Sanchez will get right to work with his new ace.
Pitchers and catchers for the New York Yankees finally report to spring training Tuesday. With that group will include starting catcher Gary Sanchez and his new ace in the form of Gerrit Cole. This is hopefully the beginning of what will be a productive relationship.
In a perfect world, Cole will be comfortable enough to work with Sanchez on every start. But he is the $324 million man. So whatever is going to make him produce at the highest rate is what the Yankees will do—even if that means using someone behind the plate other than Sanchez.
However, the 27-year-old is looking forward to working with his new ace for the first time this spring.
“Super excited,” Sanchez said on The Michael Kay Show. “I thought we already had a pretty good pitching rotation, and Gerrit just makes it that much better.”
— YES Network (@YESNetwork) February 7, 2020
It might take some time for Sanchez and Cole to get everything working together smoothly. It’s just the nature of a new pitcher working with a new catcher. Sometimes it happens quickly. Other times it takes a little longer. But Sanchez is preparing constantly to start this relationship off on the right foot entering spring training.
Before the two have even gotten together at the Yankees complex in Tampa, Sanchez has been doing his due diligence on the new ace of the staff.
“Before Spring Training, I see a lot of video,” Sanchez said. “And then once we get to camp, I’m gonna sit down and talk with him a lot throughout camp in order for him and I to have a good rapport.”
Sanchez has a big year ahead of him but it will mostly come down to staying healthy. Despite only playing in 106 games in 2019, Sanchez led all catchers with 34 home runs. Among catchers with at least 390 plate appearances, Sanchez had the second-highest OPS at the position (.841). It was just a few ticks behind the leader in Yasmani Grandal (.848).
“Of course, I always feel like I can get better,” said Sanchez. “And I worked hard this offseason, first and foremost, to be healthy. And if I’m healthy, I think I can really help the team.”
Sanchez also touched on the Astros cheating scandal, which has taken over the storylines around the league. Though no one knows for sure what would have happened, Sanchez feels the Yankees were robbed of a potential World Series because the Astros had an unfair advantage.
“Yeah, we do feel that way,” Sanchez said. “I mean we were doing things right. We were doing things by the book. And to know that a team had an unfair advantage over us is disappointing.”
The Yankees officially have pitchers and catcher report on Tuesday followed by position players on Saturday.