Ford went 1-for-4 with a two-run home run in a victory over Tampa Bay in Game 1 of Saturday's doubleheader. Ford got the start at first base in place of Luke Voit in the first game of the twinbill, and he capitalized on the opportunity with a 437-foot blast off Tyler Glasnow in the third inning. The homer was Ford's first of the campaign and only his third hit overall.
Ford would be a candidate to make the big-league squad if MLB decides to expand rosters when play resumes, Brendan Kuty of NJ Advance Media reports. Ford's place on the Opening Day roster had been in question throughout the spring, and his spot seemed to grow more tenuous with the possible return to health of Giancarlo Stanton (calf) and Aaron Judge (rib) due to the delayed start of the campaign. However, talk of MLB expanding roster sizes to account for a shortened spring training has Ford solidly back in the mix. Per Kuty, the Yankees value Ford's experience and left-handed bat off the bench despite not necessarily needing a backup first baseman.
Ford's likelihood of making the Opening Day roster is lessened with the probable return to health of Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge by the start of the regular season, Bryan Hoch of MLB.com reports. While Ford's big bat appeared to give him a leg up on a roster spot prior to the suspension of spring training, the delay to the start of the regular season figures to reduce available bench spots by two due to the anticipated return of both Judge and Stanton. Thairo Estrada, Tyler Wade and Rosell Herrera are all candidates for an Opening Day roster spot, which could bump Ford back to the minors, especially considering his limited versatility in the field. Ford didn't help his chances in spring training, as he hit .194 with only one home run during Grapefruit League play.
Ford failed to make the Yankees' ALDS roster. Ford recorded a .909 OPS in 50 games this season, including a 1.142 OPS in the month of September. The Yankees will side with Luke Voit and his longer track record to begin the playoffs despite Voit's poor run down the stretch.
Ford is being considered for a spot on the postseason roster, Lindsey Adler of The Athletic reports. Ford lost time to Luke Voit through the first part of September, but Voit's current 1-for-32 slump combined with Ford's strong play has brought into question which player will make the ALDS roster. Through 14 games in September, Ford is slashing .364/.447/.727 with three home runs, 10 RBI and a 1.175 OPS.