Every year in September the MLB rosters expand to 40 players, rather than 25. Here's who I believe the Yankees should call-up for the pennant race.
*Most teams call up 3 or 4 players before the AAA and AA playoffs end, then call up more*
1. Zach Kroenke, LHP, AAA Scranton. Kroenke has been lights out in AAA this year, with a sub-2.00 ERA. Kroenke would help the bullpen by giving them another lefty reliever and by giving them length.
2. Ramiro Pena, INF, AAA Scranton. Pena has seen a lot of time in the MLB this year and could help with the infield depth. We don't want Jose Molina being the backup third baseman, do we?
3. Mark Melancon, RHP, AAA Scranton. Melancon has had limited time in the MLB this year, but has had pretty good results in his time there. Melancon can help out with depth.
4. Shelley Duncan, OF, AAA Scranton. Duncan had one day in the majors this year before being sent down in favor of Jerry Hairston Jr. Duncan has been stellar in AAA.
AFTER THE AAA PLAYOFFS:
5. Josh Towers, RHP, AAA Scranton. Not on the 40-man but could be a spot-starter or a long reliever if needed.
6. Jon Albaladejo, RHP, AAA Scranton. Closing in AAA, has seen time in the MLB.
7. Juan Miranda, 1b, AAA Scranton. One and done this year in the MLB.
8. Kevin Russo, INF, AAA Scranton. One of the most consistent players in AAA this year, needs a spot on 40-man.
9. Austin Jackson?!?!?! OF, AAA Scranton. This is one I am uncertain about. He could use the experience, but they don't want to rush him.
10. Francisco Cervelli, C, AAA Scranton. Was great in his time in the MLB. Currently on the 7-day DL in AAA.
This would give the Yankees 35 players, 36 with Brett Gardner returning. That is more than enough.
PROBLEM: 4 of these players (Kroenke, Towers, Russo, Jackson) do not have spots on the 40-man roster.
WHO WOULD LEAVE THE 40-MAN:
1. DFA Kevin Cash. With Cervelli, Molina, and Posada all healthy, and Cash on the DL in AAA, he is completely not needed.
2. DFA Sergio Mitre.
That still leaves 2 extra spots needed, so two of those (I suspect Towers and Russo) wouldn't be called up.
OTHER OPTIONS: Anthony Claggett, Mike Dunn, Kevin Whelan, Edwar Ramirez.
*This is pure speculation*