When 22-year-old Greg Bird banged out a pair of two-run bombs in Yankee Stadium on Wednesday, he became the answer to a team trivia question by becoming just the third player to notch a multi-homer performance within five games of his major league debut in pinstripes.
However, it was six days earlier when he took the field for his inauspicious 0-for-5 debut in Cleveland that he really made his mark on the Yankee record books by becoming the team's 15th farmhand to make it to the show this season -- the most in MLB and surpassing the team's 1905 and 1914 clubs to make the 2015 Yankees the launching pad for the second-most major league debuts in team history. Only the 1912 club which recorded 17 major league debuts had more.
Contributions from the ten rookie pitchers, three rookie outfielders and two rookie infielders delivered into the fray to date by the team's retooled farm system have varied from the minor to the major, and represent the tip of a spear that could prove to be a potent weapon for the stretch run.
With a furious divisional battle testing the limits of all the big club's regulars and a farm system that's played no small part in a campaign whose success has been surprising to many, the coming expansion of rosters to their full 40-man potential in eleven days will almost certainly shatter the record -- and along with it, quite possibly, the long-held image of a farm system too green and a big club too old to go the distance.
2015 Yankees Major League Debuts To Date
April 11 Matt Tracy, 26 LHP
24th round, 2011 amateur draft.
April 15 Branden Pinder, 26 RHP
16th round, 2011 amateur draft.
May 20 Slade Heathcott, 24 Outfielder
1st round, 2009 amateur draft.
May 25 Jacob Lindgren, 22 LHP
2nd round, 2014 amateur draft.
May 30 Ramon Flores, 23 Outfielder
Amateur free agent signed 2008.
June 12 Mason Williams, 23 Outfielder
4th round, 2010 amateur draft.
June 21 Danny Burawa, 26 RHP
12th round, 2010 amateur draft.
June 21 Jose De Paula, 27 LHP
Free agent signed 2014.
June 22 Diego Moreno, 27 RHP
Acquired as part of A.J. Burnett trade 2012.
June 23 Nick Rumbelow, 23 RHP
7th round, 2013 amateur draft.
July 11 Rob Refsnyder, 24 Second Baseman
5th round, 2012 amateur draft.
July 29 Caleb Cotham, 27 RHP
5th round, 2009 amateur draft.
July 30 Nick Goody, 24 RHP
6th round, 2012 amateur draft.
August 5 Luis Severino, 21 RHP
Amateur free agent signed 2011.
August 13 Greg Bird, 22 First Baseman
5th round, 2011 amateur draft.
You can email Barry Millman at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter at @nyyankeefanfore.