The Yankees have made a change at backup catcher, activating Francisco Cervelli from the 60-day disabled list and sending John Ryan Murphy back to Triple-A.
Murphy did a solid job playing behind starter Brian McCann, hitting .286 with one homer and a .673 OPS in 24 games, but at age 23 the Yankees probably wouldn’t mind him playing more regularly in the minors and when healthy Cervelli has been a quality backup for several years now.
He sat out two months with a hamstring injury and previously missed a lot of time with a concussion, but Cervelli is a career .269 hitter with a nice .340 on-base percentage in 206 games for the Yankees.
Phillies third baseman Will Middlebrooks suffered a serious injury during Saturday’s Grapefruit League contest against the Orioles. The infielder was chasing down a pop fly in the eighth inning when he ran into left fielder Andrew Pullin, who inadvertently trapped Middlebrooks’ ankle under his leg. Middlebrooks was unable to put weight on his leg following the collision and was carted off the field and taken to a local hospital for X-rays.
Per MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki, not much is known yet about the severity of the ankle injury or the recovery time it will require, though it appears serious enough to set Middlebrooks back considerably as he seeks a backup/bench role with the team this spring.
The 29-year-old is currently seeking another opportunity to extend his six-year major-league career in 2018. He’s coming off of two down years with the Brewers and Rangers, during which he slashed a cumulative .169/.229/.262 with four extra bases through 70 plate appearances.