The New York Yankees have several decisions to make with the postseason roster, and Tyler Wade has proven himself worthy of a spot.
The New York Yankees have shown first-hand all that goes into a successful postseason run that ends with them hoisting the World Series trophy. There are several aspects and factors that go into playoff success. Tyler Wade might just be a part of that recipe.
Teams that have won it all typically have strength in a few areas. The postseason pitching—starting or relieving—has been elite for the stretch run. Timely and situational hitting is always key. But every postseason roster needs a player that has elite speed and the ability to serve as a defensive replacement.
The way Wade has been playing recently, there is a chance he’s turning into that player for the Yankees’ postseason roster.
There is a cliche in sports that is well overused. “Speed kills.” While that phrase is said by analysts and coaches often, there is some truth to it. Having difference-making speed on the postseason roster is essential for late-game situations. Wade has that type of speed to be a pinch-runner late in a game to help make an impact for the Yankees.
Simply look at current Yankees outfielder Cameron Maybin. During his time with the Houston Astros in 2017, he won a World Series ring by contributing as a defensive replacement and pinch-runner. Wade can hold that same role. He has the speed to make a difference late in the game.
Whether the Yankees want more speed on the bases or in the outfield, Wade could be the guy to fill that role.
Another cliche for you. Defense wins championships. While that’s mostly true, this is another aspect Wade can make a difference. Though he’s an infielder first, Wade has been working in the outfield and appears solid enough to trust for a few innings—even if it is in the playoffs.
Wade’s speed and positional flexibility give him the edge over someone like Clint Frazier, who has struggled mightily in the field. Having defensive liabilities can hurt a playoff run. He can also play in the infield if worse comes to worse and someone goes down.
There are many decisions to be made about the postseason roster over the next week or so. Wade has shown enough to warrant a spot on the playoff roster in a role that is necessary for postseason success. What happens remains to be seen, but he’s done all he can to prove he deserves a spot.