Warren senses Yanks' 'hunger' entering camp

Right-hander likely to fill bullpen role for New York in 2018

February 10th, 2018

TAMPA, Fla. -- 's rookie season with the Yankees took place during the final days of the "Core Four"' with Mariano Rivera bowing out one year ahead of Derek Jeter. His only World Series ring sits at home, seldom worn, having been acquired by appearing in 29 games for the 2016 Cubs.

Warren has been thinking about that season of late, reflecting upon his strange half-year playing alongside , and the rest of the Cubs team that snapped a 108-year World Series title drought. The right-hander senses a similar vibe with this promising Yankees roster.

Spring Training: Info | Tickets | Gear

"It reminds me a lot of coming into spring with the Cubs, when I was with them that one year," Warren said. "Everybody was expecting a lot of us, and I think as a team, we embraced the attention and expectations. I think that's what this team is going to do. We're not going to shy away from it."

In the wake of the Yankees' trade for National League Most Valuable Player Award winner , Warren said that "this is probably the most hype that I've had since I've been with the organization," a statement that includes those years when Rivera and Jeter were finalizing their Cooperstown cases.

Warren said that he was "kind of in disbelief" after learning of the Dec. 11 Stanton trade, in which the Yankees shipped second baseman , infielder Jorge Guzman and infielder Jose Devers to the Marlins.

"Already having the talent that we had, to add somebody of his caliber was pretty exciting," Warren said. "Once you soak it in, you start rolling through the lineups we were putting out there and what opposing pitchers were going to have to face. With the amount of run support we're going to get this year, it's going to be a lot of fun for us as a pitching staff."

The Yankees project to use Warren out of the bullpen, and for the first time in recent memory, he has not been asked to prepare as a starter; that task has been issued to right-hander , who is also likely to return to a relief role after his excellent 2017 performance.

Warren logged a 2.35 ERA in 46 appearances, limiting opponents to 35 hits in 57 1/3 innings while walking 15 and striking out 54, but he also had two stints on the disabled list -- he missed 17 games in July with right shoulder inflammation and 24 games in September with lower back spasms.

Warren said that he experienced no back issues during the offseason, which began after he fired 1 1/3 scoreless innings in Game 7 of the AL Championship Series against the Astros, a 4-0 loss in Houston.

"It was tough to swallow, as close as we got," Warren said. "I think we were happy how far we got, but we weren't satisfied once we got that close. We weren't satisfied with just making it that far. It drives you a little bit during the offseason, to push that little bit extra.

"We have that taste, that little bit of hunger. Now we want more of it. It's going to be a driving factor for us."