Yankees tab Torreyes as backup infielder

New York also options pitchers Goody, Pinder and Olson

Yankees tab Torreyes as backup infielder

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- The Yankees settled one of their spring decisions on Wednesday, informing Ronald Torreyes that he has won the backup infielder competition. The club is preparing to finalize its other calls within the next 24 hours.

Manager Joe Girardi said that Torreyes edged non-roster invitee Pete Kozma and will serve as a reserve at second base, shortstop and third base. Rob Refsnyder was also in the competition but was optioned to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre earlier this week.

"I want to thank God for the opportunity," Torreyes said through an interpreter. "This is a special moment for me that I will always remember, but I knew that my job was to work hard here every day. Because of the hard work that paid off for me, I made the team and I'm really happy about that."

Torreyes batted .303 (10-for-33) with two doubles and two RBIs in 20 spring games. He appeared briefly with the Dodgers last season, notching two hits in six at-bats.

"I thought he swung the bat well, he played good defense," Girardi said. "He runs the bases. He does all the things that he needs to do. I thought Kozma played well, too. But we decided to go with Ronny."

Other than confirming Masahiro Tanaka as the Opening Day starter and deciding between CC Sabathia and Ivan Nova as the fifth starter, still outstanding are the Yankees' decisions on a backup catcher and their bullpen. At catcher, Austin Romine is believed to have an edge over Carlos Corporan.

"Bottom line, it's just performance -- this camp he performed, last year he didn't, so good for him," Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said of Romine. "He's got a lot of ability, he's a great catch-and-throw guy, tremendous defensive catcher. We think the bat has potential."

Romine's RBI single

Cashman said that the team will contractually offer Corporan to all 29 other clubs on Wednesday.

"If we don't add him to our 40-man roster, we have to send an email to all clubs asking if anyone is interested in adding him to the 40-man roster," he said. "If so, send us an email within 24 hours and we have 24 hours after that to either let him go or put him on our 40. It's like a 48-hour situation, starting today."

The Yankees trimmed three of their bullpen hopefuls on Wednesday, optioning right-handers Nick Goody and Branden Pinder and left-hander Tyler Olson to Triple-A and reassigning them to Minor League camp.

Of that group, Pinder seemed to have the best chance of making the club. He pitched in seven games this spring, allowing one run on five hits in 6 1/3 innings (1.42 ERA).

Pinder escapes bases-loaded jam

Goody, who pitched in seven games for the Yankees last season, threw 9 2/3 innings in 10 games this spring, allowing eight runs on 12 hits. Olson allowed five runs on seven hits in seven innings this spring.

"It was probably the first year they had a chance to make the club out of Spring Training," Girardi said. "Sometimes they can put too much pressure on themselves. You get them on a roll, I believe all those guys are capable of helping us."

The Yankees project to have two bullpen spots left to decide, adding to a group that is expected to include Andrew Miller, Dellin Betances, Chasen Shreve, Bryan Mitchell and a long reliever.

The contenders include Johnny Barbato, Luis Cessa, Anthony Swarzak and Kirby Yates.

"I think we have all the answers here," Cashman said. "It doesn't preclude opportunities presenting themselves between now and Opening Day, but as of right now, I'd say it would come from here."

Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch, on Facebook and read his MLBlog, Bombers Beat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.