Harrison Bader’s journey from teenage New York baseball ‘outsider’ to Yankees center fielder

Harrison Bader was born on the Upper East Side, grew up in Bronxville, and played high school baseball at the Horace Mann private school in the Bronx.

He also played for the New York Glades (157th St. Melrose Avenue, just one mile from Yankee Stadium.

on tuesday, he played his first game in a Yankees uniform At the stadium, he scored three RBIs. In the bottom of the ninth, he saw Aaron Judge tie Babe Ruth with his 60th home run of the season. Giancarlo Stanton completes winning grand slam.

“It was amazing,” Bader said the next day. “That was a great feat, but everyone here is thinking about something bigger: winning the World Series.”

Bader, who sat in the stands at Yankee Stadium as a young man, came to the Yankees in August in a trade with the Cardinals in exchange for left-hander Jordan Montgomery.

Harrison-Vader’s trade to the Yankees brought him just a mile away from the neighborhood where he played travel ball for three years.
Photo credit: David Owens

It was The most unexpected move of the trading deadline by the Yankees.Montgomery is A solid left-hander in the middle of a rotation The Yankees were considering an upgrade. To make matters worse, Bader was sidelined due to plantar fasciitis, keeping him out of play for several weeks.

But the Yankees wanted an upgrade in center field after Aaron Hicks broke out of the starting lineup and returned Judge to right field so he could reduce wear and tear. I started pitching like a vintage CC Sabathia.

the transaction is unpopular with fans A question was asked in some parts of the baseball world.

“I didn’t pay attention to the talk or anything like that,” Bader said. .”

Vader is now ready to take part in a stretch run in the Bronx.

“I called him right after the trade,” said former Grays teammate Kevin Martyr. “I said to him, ‘Finally, you’re pinstriped. Yankees. He’s playing for the Yankees in stadiums. That’s what we envisioned when we were younger.'”

Martir hails from Brooklyn and, like most of Bader’s Gray teammates, lived in the inner city. After playing college ball in Maryland, Martyr spent some time in the minors before an injury ended his career. He is currently his affiliate hitting coach for his Low-A Tampa Yankees.

New York Yankees center fielder Harrison Bader #22 scores on an RBI single by New York Yankees catcher Jose Trevino #39 in the fifth inning.
The Yankees acquired Vader, who can help center field and baserunning, in a controversial trade-deadline deal that sent Jordan Montgomery to the Cardinals.
Charles Wenzelberg/New York Post

“We were a bunch of mostly Latino kids from the Bronx, Brooklyn and Queens,” said Martier, who was drafted in the 18th round by the Astros in 2015 and played three seasons in the minors. “He came in and said, ‘Who is this kid?'” But you can immediately see how much he wanted to play and how hard he worked, so he was a good fit.”

David Owens runs the New York Glades and briefly served as Horace Mann’s assistant coach. He helped lead Bader into the Grays program.

“He adapted very well right away,” Owens said. “If you’re a ball player, regardless of your background, you’re a ball player.”

Bader isn’t the only ex-grey in the majors: Jose Cuas is Royals bullpen right hand man.

“Grays taught me that no matter your background, money, or race, once you step on the ballpark, you don’t care about the ball.”Are you from Brooklyn or the Upper East Side?I’m from Spain. I was one of the outsiders because I wasn’t a person, but they welcomed me because I could play.”

He played enough to reach the University of Florida before being drafted in the third round by the Cardinals in 2015.

He worked drills with Owens and other trainers in the offseason to become an elite defensive center fielder. This is where Aaron Boone and General Manager Brian Cashman like his 28-year-old. Vader won his Gold Glove award last season and set career highs in home runs (16) and his OPS (.785).

“He was slovenly and played hard,” said Martia. “He always wanted to get better. Every year he came back bigger, stronger and faster. He put in the work. You could say he was into the game.”

New York Yankees Harrison Vader RBI Single Score Oswald Cabrera 5th inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Yankee Stadium.  February 20, 2022, Bronx, New York.
Kevin Martyr, now the Yankees’ minor league batting coach, who was Vader’s teammate when he was playing for the Grays, said the Yankees’ new outfielder is “obsessed” with the game.
Corey Shipkin

Marutia is a hitting coach and is confident that his old teammates will contribute at bat.

“I think he still has a lot of upside with his bat,” Martier said. “We’re talking about hitting, but I believe he’s in the right place at the right time to get the most out of himself as an athlete.

Now Vader is doing it with the Yankees.

“My only dream was to play in the major leagues,” Vader said. “That’s what I was obsessed with. So when I got into the majors with the Cardinals, I wasn’t thinking about the Yankees yet.

“But I always wanted to play on the biggest stage, so deep down I was thinking about New York. Also, I have work to do.”

save thoughts

New York Yankees reliever Clay Holmes #35 pitched in the eighth inning.
Clay Holmes’ second-half struggle has cast some doubt as to whether Aaron Boone will be in charge of the bullpen in the playoffs.
Charles Wenzelberg/New York Post

who closes?

The Yankees have just a few weeks to put the bullpen in order before the postseason.Clay Holmes leads the team with 20 saves, but his right-hander Not the same since the All-Star break Lacks postseason experience.

Aroldis Chapman has a lot of playoff experience, but a lot of it isn’t good. He’s the Yankees and he has nine saves and he’s second, No guarantee of being on the playoff rostermuch less in closer roles.

Wandy Peralta is next, with four saves.Boone noted the “fearlessness” of being left-handed, but Peralta will be out until at least early October with a back injury. Hoping for a comeback before the playoffs.

Zach Britton returned Thursday after a year from last season’s UCL surgery. far outside.

The Yankees may need to piece together the end of the game, as they did most of the second half.

duck in the pond

New York Yankees left fielder Oswald Cabrera, 95, with a grand slam home run on Wednesday, September 21, 2022, when the New York Yankees faced the Pittsburgh Pirates at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, NY.
Oswaldo Cabrera has generally struggled at bat since being called up from the minors, but has yet to retire in his first four with the bases loaded.
Robert Sabo

Oswald Cabrera has stood out in many ways since being called up from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre in mid-August. He has shown ability to play both all four of his positions in the infield and a spot in the corner outfield.

But perhaps his most impressive achievement is at bat. Cabrera, 23, is going 3-for-3 with the bases loaded and he has four at-bats, walks and eight RBIs. first grand slam Or victory over the pirates on Wednesday.

However, he has some other things to do in other situations. Cabrera has no bases loaded and he has 119 at-bats and he has only 7 RBIs.

Still, this is another example of how Cabrera has shown his ability not to be overwhelmed in another new location in the majors.

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