Israel baseball's great hope Eladio Rodriguez has gotten a lot closer to Yankee Stadium this morning— but only geographically. The slugging catcher has been demoted from the Triple A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees to the Staten Island Yankees— aka The Baby Bombers-- of the Single A Penn League, as injuries and player shuffles have the Pride of The Israel Baseball League bouncing around more than the 99 Bus in Jerusalem.
E-Rod, the IBL’s swing king co-MVP and mystery man won a controversial Yankees contract amid the fracas of the IBL’s post season scandals, played the winter in his homeland of the Dominican Republic, failed to show up for spring training with the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre boys, and then was called up from Florida after injuries and moves in the The Bronx had him poised to make it all the way to The Big Show.
But Chad Jennings, who covers the Pennsylvania Yanks for the Scranton Times-Tribune, writes:
Got the clubhouse today and saw the guy I wrote six months ago the Yankees should consider signing to a minor league deal. Catcher J.D. Closser (left) has joined the Yankees on a minor league deal and been assigned to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. To make room for him on the Triple-A roster, Eladio Rodriguez was assigned to Staten Island... Given the state of the Yankees catchers, it makes sense to have another experience player in the fold.
Is the dream over? The Staten Island season doesn't start until June. We look forward to the weekend...