Yankees get the World Series-winning crew back together to help out in spring training

Sat, Mar 16, 2024
MLB News (AP)

Yankees get the World Series-winning crew back together to help out in spring training

Former Yankees center fielder Bernie Williams was back at camp as guest instructor on Saturday, joining teammate Andy Pettitte and four-time World Series-winning manager Joe Torre.

The trio, all key members of the 1996-2000 Yankees teams that won it all four times, were together behind the cage during batting practice in Tampa, Florida.

Torre arrived Friday for his initial instructor stint and said this was the first he was in uniform at Steinbrenner Field since his final spring training as manager in 2007. He initially wasn't going to put on his old No. 6, but he changed his mind after being seeing Pettitte and guest instructor Ron Guidry in the coaches room.

Also present was Yankees general manager Brian Cashman, who was an assistant GM in 1996 before being promoted to his current role two years later.

Guidry and guest instructor Willie Randolph were members of the powerhouse late 1970s Yankees teams.

"There's a lot of wisdom, you know, whether it's Joe Torre or Bernie Williams or Willie Randolph," Cashman said.

NO RELIEF

Cleveland's pitching problems could be deepening.

Guardians manager Stephen Vogt said reliever Sam Hentges will be shut down for a few days while the team gathers more information on his swollen left middle finger.

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Hentges' injury is the latest for the Guardians, who announced earlier this week that reliever Trevor Stephan and top prospect Daniel Espino will undergo season-ending surgeries and starter Gavin Williams will begin the season on the injured list with a sore elbow.

All that news came in one day.

Hentges has struggled this spring, but the Guardians are counting on him to be part of a bullpen that suddenly has some major questions. The 27-year-old Hentges went 3-2 with a 3.61 ERA in 56 games last season.

STRONG PROSPECTS

Tigers infielder Jace Jung, the team's top pick in the 2022 amateur draft, hit two homers in Detroit's Spring Breakout prospects game against the Phillies.

Jung's first homer came off of Philadelphia's No. 2 prospect, Mick Abel, and his second was a 412-foot shot against Griff McGarry. Detroit won the game 5-1.

Jung hit 28 homers in the minors last year, when he split time between Single- and Double-A.

KOLE CALHOUN RETIRES

Kole Calhoun, a Gold Glove-winning outfielder during a 12-year career with the Angels, Diamondbacks, Rangers and Guardians, says he is retiring.

"Baseball was always my dream, and to make that my reality fills me with gratitude," he posted on Instagram on Friday night. "I have loved this game since I can remember so making this announcement weighs heavy on my heart. This day comes for all players eventually and I can honestly say that I have given this game everything I have and I walk away with no regrets."

Calhoun, 36, was an eighth-round draft choice by the Angels in 2010 who was a lifetime .242 hitter with 179 homers and 582 RBIs. He won a Gold Glove for the Angels in 2015, when he also hit a career-high 26 homers. He was third in the NL with 16 homers in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season.

"I once read that endings are not a bad thing, they just mean that something else is about to begin," he posted. "Thank you baseball for the memories!!"

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AP Sports Writer Tom Withers in Cleveland and AP freelance writer Mark Didtler in Tampa, Florida, contributed to this report.

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