Yankees Sign Adam Lind to Minor League Deal to Shore up First Base

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Adam Lind, the 34-year-old first baseman/outfielder, was working out at the free-agent camp on Thursday, but no more:

The move is intended to provide depth for Greg Bird at first base, who is currently backed up by Tyler Austin, both of whom have had injury concerns in the past. Lind is a solid veteran who has played 582 career games at first base.

In particular, Bird was lost to the Yankees with a shoulder injury in 2016 and an ankle injury until August of 2017. As a result, first base was filled first with an underperforming Chris Carter, and later, more successfully, by Chase Headley, who has since been traded to the San Diego Padres.

Austin had a series of injuries, including a fracture in his ankle and a hamstring problem that kept him mostly out of the lineup in 2017. On the season, Austin had only 46 plate appearances and hit .255.

Lind posted a .303/.362/.513 slash line with 14 home runs and 59 RBIs in 116 games with the Nationals in 2017.

The lefty made 30 starts at first base, 25 in left field, and six as the designated hitter. He also hit a league-high four pinch-hit home runs in 48 plate appearances as a pinch hitter.

With the infield battle for second and third bases taking center stage this spring, could first base join in the fray? With Adam Lind in the mix, the battle to add depth at first base just got more exciting.

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One Response

  1. Tim Mahoney

    It would be interesting to know how this late signing came to be. Possibly a consequence of the glut of unemployed veteran free agents this off season. Certainly, Lind would be a better backup for Bird than Carter was last year and another left handed bat in a lineup arguably too heavily right handed. And on a cheap minor league deal. Not bad. Of course, Lind is an accomplished veteran and the split minor league/major league contracts could cost the Yankees some if they are forced to bring him up later in the season. Wonder what the cost impact would be for that, though it’s almost certain that Cashman wouldn’t have grabbed him if bringing him up would endanger their ability to stay below the CBA pain threshold.

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