Yankees’ Anthony Volpe scratched Sunday with upset stomach

Yankees’ Anthony Volpe scratched Sunday with upset stomach

HOUSTON – Aaron Boone spent much of his pregame scrum praising Anthony Volpe’s swing changes and early season success, but the manager had to pull his starting shortstop from Sunday’s lineup.

An upset stomach, something that others who went to Mexico City have dealt with, forced the 22-year-old to the bench. With Volpe unavailable, Jon Berti was penciled in for his Yankees debut at third base. Oswaldo Cabrera moved from third to shortstop.

Before the tummy troubles, Volpe had gotten off to a hot start this season. He’s hit .400/.571/.800 over his first three games, adding a double, two RBI, four walks and a home run, a solo shot in Saturday’s win.

“I feel like I’m just setting myself up better for success, and when I feel like I’m doing that, then everything will take care of itself,” Volpe said after the dinger. “So knowing that I’m always putting myself in positions to succeed definitely feels a lot better.”

Volpe spent much of the offseason revamping his bat path, and Boone noticed immediate changes the first time the two saw each other at the Yankees’ minor league complex over the winter. The tweaks prompted the manager to say, “I think he looks like a way better hitter,” on Opening Day.

That comment followed a three-walk day from Volpe, who has shown improved discipline at the plate so far. Before his stomach issues, he had whiffed on just two of the 70 pitches he’s seen this season.

“I think it’s definitely swing adjustments he’s made,” Boone said of Volpe, who struck out 167 times as a rookie. “Certainly, the experience and his aptitude and his baseball IQ. But swing and miss was an issue for him last year. So as I’ve talked about since early spring, you can clearly see he’s worked hard to plug some holes that the league exposed a little bit at times last year.”

Berti’s first shot

Before finding himself in the Yankees’ revised lineup, Berti was looking at a third straight game on the bench since being acquired from the Marlins. Oswaldo Cabrera’s red-hot start made it tough for Berti to get his feet wet, but Boone insisted that the utilityman is going to play a huge part on this year’s team.

“I think everyone can understand the situation,” Boone said, referring to Cabrera’s surge. “I told Jon this today: nobody wanted him here more than me. I pushed everyone. ‘Hey, we need to go get him. I know what he’s gonna mean to this team in the long haul.’ I know that’s the case.”

Boone added that Miami’s rivals have reached out to express their gratitude over the trade.

“I’ve had many people from the NL East, opponents of the Marlins, reach out and thank me, [saying they’re] glad this guy’s out of our division,” Boone said.

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