Romine’s career-best 11 game hitting streak ended while the Yankees were sweeping a two-game set with the Jays and his team-best average dropped from.373 to.344, but his game-calling again was stellar.
Romine did an unbelievable job, Gray said. I didn’t shake him one time. We were going in and out throwing pitches that I normally (don’t throw)… but I just got convicted in what he was putting down and threw it.
Romine, who is a lot like Aaron Judge when it comes to deflecting credit, played down his role in Gray’s success.
You’ve got to be able to read what’s working better than the other one per se, Romine said. Or if all of them are working, it’s just kind of flipping a coin. But I think we were primarily sticking with the (sinking) two-seamer and the curveball and we were able to sprinkle some sliders in there to keep it going.
Poyer had five interceptions, 95 tackles, 13 passes defensed and a touchdown in the first season of his four-year, $13 million deal with the team, but the 27-year-old has been around for half a decade, and it’s possible his career year came a season too late.
White had four interceptions, 18 passes defensed and a touchdown while making nearly $750,000 less than Poyer on average. The 23-year-old 2017 first-round pick made a similar impact for less money and has a higher upside, so he gets the crown.
This one was basically a toss-up between 2015 third-round pick Eli Harold and 2017 third-rounder Ahkello Witherspoon, both of whom have become solid young defensive starters on cheap rookie contracts for the San Francisco 49ers.
Witherspoon didn’t get onto the field during the first month of his rookie season but became a regular starter by November. Per PFF, he allowed a passer rating of just 66.4 between Week 13 and Week 16, and he didn’t give up a touchdown in coverage after Week 12. That probably indicates he’s on a better trajectory than Harold, who wasn’t a liability but failed to take a leap forward in his third season.