British stone. ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Anthony Volpe’s goal of playing all 162 games this season is over.
Volpe took a full day off for the first time this year on Saturday, spending time on the bench in the Yankees’ 3-0 loss to the Rays.
In the other six games he hasn’t been in the starting lineup this season, the rookie shortstop has found his way, playing in all 128 of the Yankees’ games going into Saturday.
Volpe was the last Yankee to play in every game, but that record is now over.
“I think the fact that he plays every day has value,” head coach Aaron Boone said before the game. “The fact that he’s playing every day — we’ve got to pay attention to that of course. He’s never gone through and played an entire major league season until September or anything like that. Whether it’s 152, 162, 156, you like to watch to these numbers.
“I think his drive has remained healthy, which is encouraging. Yankee shortstop, going through the grind of a first season at this level, I think he’s handling it really well.”
The Yankees haven’t played in all 162 games in a season since Alex Rodriguez and Hideki Matsui in 2005.
Volpe, 22, didn’t hit the field before Saturday’s game as it appeared the Yankees were trying to ditch his typical pregame workout.
Volpe’s most appearances in any season as a pro came last year, when he played 132 games between Double-A Somerset and Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre ( 596 appearances).
This year, Volpe made 474 appearances.
While he also struggled quite a bit at the home plate, he showed more signs of improvement in the second half and was strong overall defensively.
Anthony Rizzo (post-concussion syndrome) and Josh Donaldson (calf strain) were at the Yankees’ player development center in Tampa on Saturday morning with a recovering Luis Gill (who underwent surgery on Tommy John) On-site batting practice.
Boone said Donaldson could begin rehab “very soon,” though he won’t be eligible to be removed from the 60-day disabled list until Sept. 14.
Boone said the Yankees “at some point” will want to land rising first base star Austin Wells, currently in Triple-A.
But the organization is encouraged by the work he’s doing behind the scenes.
“We also feel like he continues to develop a lot as a receiver,” Boone said. “We want to keep that progression going, especially as he keeps climbing the levels.”
After throwing a career-high 62/₃ innings Saturday, Clark Schmidt has thrown 129 2/₃ innings this year, the most in a single season of his career.
His previous high was 90 innings in 2019.
While Boone said the Yankees are monitoring Schmidt’s workload, they’re satisfied with how he’s coping with his heavy workload.
“The barriers to entry are high [of innings] It’s there,” Boone said. “Obviously we’ll continue to follow his story. But it feels really good about his fitness and how his body and stamina seem to hold up. “