Kratz will not be on the roster for the ALDS against the Rays. The Yankees carried three catchers during the AL WIld Card Round but unsurprisingly didn't need all three, with Kratz failing to make an appearance. He won't be there as bench depth for the next series, with right-handed pitcher Michael King joining the roster in his place.
Kratz started behind the plate in Game 2 of Friday's doubleheader against the Orioles and went 2-for-3 with a pair of RBI. With Gary Sanchez catching the earlier contest, Kratz was called upon to make his first start since Aug. 30 in the nightcap. The veteran responded by accounting for half of the team's hits in the loss and driving in a pair of runs on a fourth-inning single. Kratz has done well when given an opportunity to play this season, slashing .348/.375/.435 with two doubles and three RBI.
Kratz could be designated for assignment by the Yankees when No. 2 backstop Kyle Higashioka returns from the injured list, Brendan Kuty of NJ Advance Media reports. The Yankees are in a difficult position with Kratz, who was summoned from the team's alternate training site and added to the 40-man roster Aug. 8. With the team already facing a roster crunch, it will likely be inclined to designate Kratz for assignment when Higashioka returns unless the Yanks choose to carry three catchers on the big-league squad. Kratz has performed well while filling in for Higashioka, collecting six hits in 20 at-bats including a pair of doubles.
Kratz's contract was selected by the Yankees on Saturday. After being chosen for the taxi squad for the team's trip to Tampa, Kratz will join the active roster after Kyle Higashioka (oblique) was placed on the 10-day injured list in a corresponding move. It's unclear how much time Higashioka will miss as a result of his injury, but Kratz should serve as the backup catcher until he returns.
Kratz is traveling with the Yankees this weekend as part of their five-man taxi squad, Bryan Hoch of MLB.com reports. Kratz began the season ranked fourth on the team's catching depth chart, but he'll move up a spot with Chris Iannetta's placement on the restricted list Friday. That will enable Kratz to travel with the Yankees on their weekend road trip in Tampa, though he won't be eligible to play unless he is first moved to the team's active roster.
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