(Is the kid already being groomed? Courtesy of Ron Antonelli/NY Daily News)
There's no denying that the Yankees downgraded at more than one position this offseason, perhaps nowhere more than at catcher. Low 2012 batting average aside, Russell Martin was a good 2-way backstop in his two years in New York. He brought power and patience (the top two Yankee offensive staples) to the plate, some decent speed and smarts on the basepaths, and a strong all-around defensive game behind the plate. The Yankees' decision to not even offer him a contract this offseason was beyond puzzling, both because of the money involved in the deal he eventually did sign and because of what they had left available to pick from for a replacement. There's no other way to say it than to just say that the Yankees have two substandard candidates for the everyday job this year, guys who are much better suited as backups than starters. That's the decision the front office made and a decision they've stood by all offseason, for better or worse. Now that camp has started, we'll find out who's the next in line to be the bridge to Gary Sanchez.