CHICAGO – Edwin Encarnacion does not solve the need for the Yankees to have a starting pitcher, but he will certainly add some power to a training course in the process of inserting big biceps.
Mariners acquired Saturday night for prospect of minor league pitchers Juan Then, Encarnacion will debut Monday in the first of three games against the Rays at Yankee Stadium.
This is the first infusion of powerful right handed bats. Giancarlo Stanton must return from the list of injured on Tuesday. The Yankees have not set an exact date for Aaron Judge, but they said it could be during the next home game on Monday at 10 games.
"Potentially, over the next few days, Encarnacion, Stanton and Judge are three elite power hitters connected to our lineup," Aaron Boone said before Sunday's game against the White Sox at the Guaranteed Rate Field. "Hopefully, over time, this creates a huge advantage for us."
According to John Gibbons, who led Encarnacion in Toronto, the Yankees are getting a leading hitter and the ultimate professional.
"He's a great guy, do not say (spit). He goes on his business. You would not know he's here until you see him doing his fieldwork, "Gibbons said Sunday morning by phone," He's very prepared, keeps watch for him, I love him and I can not not say enough good things about it. "
Although Boone may occasionally use 36-year-old Encarnacion on first base, most of it will be DH. That means Stanton will play on the left field and turn Brett Gardner into a fourth player.
"I'm still waiting for Gardy to play a lot. Obviously, it is very important to this team in many ways and will continue to do so, "Boone said of the veteran.
Encarnacion should be in training on Monday. It was would have has not played since Wednesday, but the Mariners may have wanted to avoid the risk of injury during an exchange.
The Mariners sent $ 8.4 million to the Yankees with Encarnacion. As for the luxury tax, the Yankees have to pay about $ 3.4 million.
"It fits well. Boone said about Encarnacion, who led the AL in home runs (21), was tied for third in the RBI (49) and hit .241 with. a. 888 OPS in 65 parts. He has 401 career homers. "I am looking forward to adding it and adding more length to our lineup. Not just a dreaded hitter, but a very good hitter. "