Dean Anna led the Triple-A
League with a .331 average in
2013 and didn’t even get the courtesy of a call up from the parent club San Diego
Padres in September. Fast forward to an under-the-radar
trade early in the offseason and Anna was part of the most storied franchise in
baseball, the New York Yankees.
Better for him, there was some room for movement in the organization with the Yankees losing Robinson Cano to free agency and a slew of question marks around the infield.
Anna reported for spring training and put in his work. He hit
.262 this spring
and played well at three different infield positions. The Yankees announced
over the weekend that the 27-year-old lefty hitter made the Opening Day roster as
a reserve infielder.
With Brendan Ryan on the disabled list, Anna will be the primary back up for starting shortstop Derek Jeter. Jeter is expected to have off days penciled into the opening of the season and Anna will take the role until Ryan is healthy.
Anna, through a press release delivered to The Baseball Stance by his management company Worldwide Career Management, expressed his enthusiasm.
“It was a long journey to get to where I am now, but it was all worth the ride,” said Anna about
making the Opening Day roster. “Every step of the journey has been leading to this moment, and it’s great to finally be here.”
Anna, an Illinois native, will wear number 45 in homage to his childhood hero Michael Jordan. Jordan wore 45 when he came out of retirement.
Photo Courtesy of Worldwide Career Management.
Christopher Carelli is a freelance sports writer/editor and the Director of Content Strategy for Sportsideo.