Yankees place Alex Verdugo on paternity list ahead of Orioles series

In a surprising turn of events, Alex Verdugo, the lefty-hitting outfielder for the New York Yankees, won’t be gracing the lineup in the upcoming game against the Baltimore Orioles at Camden Yards.

The reason? He’s been placed on the paternity list. However, every cloud has a silver lining, as they say.

To fill in the gap, the Yankees have called up catcher Carlos Narvaez to take Verdugo’s place.

Judge’s Unusual Position

With Verdugo out of the picture, Aaron Judge, a familiar face in the Yankees’ lineup, has been given a new role.

For the first time in his major league career, Judge will be starting as a left fielder in Monday’s game.

This change marks an interesting shift in strategy by the Yankees’ management.

The Outfield Lineup

Alongside Judge’s move to left field,

Trent Grisham and Juan Soto retain their positions in center and right field, respectively.

This outfield arrangement presents a formidable defense for the Yankees, albeit with a slight tweak due to Verdugo’s absence.

Contemplating Position Changes

Before finalizing the lineup, Yankees manager Aaron Boone pondered over a potential shuffle in the outfield.

There was mild consideration given to moving Soto to left field and having Judge play in right field.

This strategic move aimed to optimize the team’s defensive capabilities based on the unique dimensions of Camden Yards.

Judge’s Adaptability

Despite the deliberation, Judge’s comfort and experience in left field were decisive factors in maintaining the initial lineup configuration.

The spacious left field at Camden Yards, coupled with Judge’s preparedness through spring training reps, reassured the management of his ability to perform effectively in this new position.

Verdugo’s Recent Performance

Verdugo’s absence from the lineup is certainly notable, especially considering his recent performance.

In the previous series against the Milwaukee Brewers, he was positioned in the cleanup spot by manager Aaron Boone.

The results were impressive, with the Yankees securing convincing victories with Verdugo contributing significantly to the offensive onslaught.

Narvaez: The Replacement

In Verdugo’s absence, Carlos Narvaez steps in as the replacement. Known for his receiving skills, Narvaez brings a different dynamic to the team.

Despite his batting average of .211 in Class AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, Narvaez’s defensive prowess and adaptability make him a valuable asset for the Yankees in this game.

Additional Flexibility

Narvaez’s versatility extends beyond his role as a catcher.

He also provides backup support as a first baseman, addressing a gap in the Yankees’ lineup caused by DJ LeMahieu’s absence due to injury.

This added flexibility enhances the team’s adaptability in different game scenarios.

Pitching Matchup

Shifting focus to the pitching aspect, the matchup for Monday night’s game features Clarke Schmidt from the Yankees against Grayson Rodriguez from the Orioles.

With both teams vying for the top spot in the AL East, the significance of this matchup cannot be overstated.

The Orioles’ Strength

Boone acknowledges the Orioles’ strength as formidable opponents.

Leading the AL with 44 home runs, the Orioles present a potent offensive threat.

Their athleticism, power-hitting, and versatility pose a challenge for the Yankees, emphasizing the importance of a strategic approach to the game.

Controversial Umpire Call

Adding to the pre-game buzz is the controversy surrounding umpire Andy Fletcher’s postgame comments from the previous match against the Milwaukee Brewers.

Fletcher’s interpretation of a pivotal play involving Aaron Judge has sparked debate and awaits further clarification from MLB.

Looking Ahead

As the Yankees gear up to face the Orioles in what promises to be an intense matchup, all eyes are on the field.

With lineup adjustments, pitching strategies, and potential umpire calls in the mix, the stage is set for an intriguing game at Camden Yards.

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