#Yankees continue to phase out Jay Bruce

#Yankees continue to phase out Jay Bruce

Jay Bruce’s phasing out of the lineup continued Saturday in the Yankees’ 6-3 loss to the Blue Jays at the Stadium.

DJ LeMahieu started at first base for the second straight game and fourth time in the past six games. Bruce had started the first eight games of the season at first base, with Luke Voit on the injured list, but the arrival of Rougned Odor — who started his seventh straight game at second base Saturday, bumping LeMahieu to first — and Bruce’s struggles have him on the outside looking in.

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“I think [LeMahieu] is gonna get a lot of looks, a lot of time there [at first base],” manager Aaron Boone said. “I think you can expect to see DJ a lot there in the near future.”

Asked about where Bruce’s place was on the roster given that plan, Boone was noncommittal.

“We’ll see,” Boone said. “Probably a little more committed right now to DJ and Rougie out there. So we’ll have to see.”

Bruce was hitting just 4-for-34 with a home run and 13 strikeouts through Saturday.

Voit, meanwhile, did some light defensive work before Saturday’s game as he continues to work his way back from March 29 surgery for a partially torn meniscus. Boone said he is scheduled to start hitting on Monday.

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“It shouldn’t be too far off now,” Boone said. “Whether that’s another two-three weeks, I wouldn’t want to put a timetable on it. But we certainly like the progress that he’s making.”

Outfielder Mike Tauchman also took ground balls at first base Saturday morning, continuing to get work at the position.

The Yankees have Mike Ford at the alternate site, but the first baseman is not eligible to be recalled (barring an injury) until Monday, needing to spend 10 days down after briefly coming up when Gio Urshela went on the COVID-19 injured list.

Before the game, the Yankees recalled RHP Brooks Kriske from the alternate site.

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