June 13, 2024

The Yankees quietly released their power-hitting Triple-A first baseman, who previously excelled in the KBO, in a move not motivated by performance. On Wednesday, the Yankees announced changes within their minor-league system, likely unrelated to performance.

Jose Rojas, formerly of the Angels and a standout in the KBO, showcased his hitting prowess with the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders before his June 1 opt-out date, finishing his tenure with 10 homers, 34 RBIs, and a .900 OPS in 43 games. Despite the potential for Rojas to stay beyond this date, especially given the first base issues at the major league level with Anthony Rizzo’s decline, he did not play past May 31. The Yankees have previously promoted non-40-man roster players, though reluctantly, as seen with Estevan Florial.

Yankees sneakily release slugging Triple-A first baseman who starred in KBO

The minor-league update on Wednesday confirmed Rojas’ release, likely a mutual decision to let him pursue opportunities elsewhere. Rojas had shown potential after hitting 19 homers in 122 games with the Doosan Bears, reminiscent of Jorge Vazquez, who dominated Triple-A but never broke the “Quad-A” label.

The Yankees will now focus on TJ Rumfield, who has been impressive this season. Additionally, the Yankees traded Luis Torrens this week, possibly making room for Ben Rice, who recently caught Gerrit Cole’s rehab start.

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