04/04/09 5:05 PM ET
Pena edges Berroa for 25th roster spot
Yanks infielder's impressive spring earns him utility job
By Bryan Hoch / MLB.com
The announcement was made after the Yankees' 10-1 Spring Training victory over the Chicago Cubs at the new Yankee Stadium, with the 23-year-old Pena beating out the 31-year-old Berroa to serve as New York's utility infielder beginning the season.
Despite having not played above Double-A Trenton, Pena opened eyes in camp when Derek Jeter left the club for the World Baseball Classic, showcasing a slick glove and a developing bat. Pena batted .277 (18-for-65) with two doubles, a triple and seven RBIs in 30 Spring Training games for New York.
Berroa, who edged Hideki Matsui as the AL's top rookie in 2003 as a member of the Royals, came up short in his bid to make the big league club, despite having a stronger offensive spring. Berroa was in camp as a non-roster invitee and hit .371 (23-for-62) with eight doubles, two home runs and 11 RBIs in 29 spring games.
In order to make room on the 40-man roster, the Yankees designated right-hander Dan Giese for assignment. Giese was 0-1 with a 6.48 ERA in nine Grapefruit League games.
The Yankees also officially placed third baseman Alex Rodriguez on the 15-day disabled list with a right hip labral tear, retroactive to March 27. Rodriguez continues to rehab in Colorado and is expected back in New York's lineup by May 15.
Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.