Yankees players forgotten on Opening Day rosters


Kevin Youkilis with the Yankees in 2013

The Yankees have had their fair share of Do you remember that boy? players on their Opening Day rosters for the past few decades. Here are some of the most memorable of the forgotten:

Kenny Lofton, 2004

The Yankees signed the borderline Hall of Famer ahead of his doomed 2004 season, which added another moment of heartbreak to Lofton’s résumé. He hit .275 in 83 games with the Yankees, then was traded to the Philadelphia Phillies for the start of the 2005 season.

Tony Womack, 2005

Four years after hitting the game-tying single in the ninth inning of Game 7 of the 2001 World Series against New York, Womack signed with the Yankees for the 2005 season. On Opening Day, he was 3-for-5 in a 9-2 victory over Boston. So his time at Pinstripes was not wasted.

Josh Phelps / Doug Mientkiewicz, 2007

After spending the 2006 season in the Detroit Tigers’ minor league system, the Yankees took a flier on Phelps to place him in a platoon with Mientkiewicz, as Jason giambi became the team’s designated hitter. What a duo. The latter got most of the time at the beginning until he collided with Mike lowell in early June and suffered a concussion that kept him out for three months. Phelps received DFA about two weeks later.

LaTroy Hawkins, 2008

The 1,000-team relief pitcher (actually 12) appeared in 33 games for New York during the 2008 season. His 5.71 ERA in that span played a role in his July trade of that season to Houston. He was also booed after using Paul O’NeillIt is number 21 and has not been used since.

Kevin Cash, 2009

The 2020 Yankees ‘number one enemy was briefly on the right side during the 2009 season. He signed in December 2008, appeared in 10 games in May for the Yankees’ pitching stable, then was transferred to Triple-A.

Travis Hafner, 2013

After 10 years in Cleveland, Hafner signed with the Yankees in the offseason before the 2013 season. In 82 games, he performed exactly as you would think a 36-year-old Travis Hafner would: a .202 average with 12 home runs and 37 RBIs.

Kevin Youkilis, 2013

It’s truly a miracle that the 2013 Yankees finish above .500, that entire roster could potentially be on this list. But yeah, Youkilis was that year’s Opening Day third baseman, clean-shaven after spending his previous nine seasons with the Boston Red Sox. But he only played in 28 games after sustaining neck and back injuries earlier in the season.

Brian Roberts, 2014

A Baltimore Orioles legend, Roberts signed a one-year deal with the Yankees after 13 seasons with the division rival. He was the replacement for Robinson Cano, who went to Seattle on a 10-year contract that Brian Cashman refused to give. He hit .237 in 91 games with them and was a DFA on August 1.

Brandon Drury, 2018

The Yankees thought they found a diamond in the rough when they acquired Drury before the 2018 season from Arizona; his last trade with the D-Backs was for Didi gregorius, which is why fans thought the Yankees plucked them again. He started Opening Day at third base in 2018, but suffered from migraines earlier in the season. He played a total of 18 games for the Major League Baseball club before being traded to Toronto, along with Billy McKinney, by JA Happ.

Troy Tulowitzki, 2019

Poor Tulo was nearing the end when he signed with the Yankees two years ago, and his time in the Bronx didn’t last long, even though he started over on Opening Day. DJ LeMahieu. He played five of the first six games of the 2019 season, then went to IL and voluntarily retired a few months later, in July. However, he will always be linked to the Yankees through baseball trivia lore: With which team did Troy Tulowitzki play his last game?

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