The Yankees have 22 retired numbers — by far the most in all of Major League Baseball.
And as a result, they’re almost running out of numbers to offer players, and are considering removing numbers from manager Aaron Boone and coaches as a measure to help combat their first-world problem, according to The Athletic.
“It’s going to get to a point where, if the coaches are going to keep their numbers, we may get to triple digits one day,” Yankees director of clubhouse operations Lou Cucuzza told the outlet.
The report indicates that Boone, along with other coaches, may not wear numbers beyond Opening Day, wearing league-issued pullovers or hoodies, similar to other staffs in the league, and may not show numbers anymore during games.
Additionally, a movement to no longer have managers and coaches wear numbers is reportedly gaining steam in Major League Baseball.
The Athletic says that Cucuzza presented the idea to senior vice president of on-field operations for MLB, Michael Hill, but a drastic change won’t yet occur.
However, it reportedly hasn’t been thrown out entirely either, leaving room for the possibility.
“Nobody’s wearing the jerseys anymore,” added Cucuzza. “They wear them because it’s Opening Day. They’ll wear them in the postseason during introductions. That’s really it. The coaches today are probably a lot different than the coaches of yesteryear.”
In total, the Yankees offer 75 numbers to their 40-man roster, plus coaching staff.
It’s not 78, despite having 22 retired numbers, because three others — No’s. 19, 52, and 69 — are being held out.
No. 19 hasn’t been worn since Masahiro Tanaka’s departure, and No. 52’s been stored away since CC Sabathia’s retirement.
As for No. 69, it was worn once by Alan Mills in 1990 — in only one game.
He was forced to change it midseason, and he then wore No. 28.
“I wanted to keep it. They didn’t want me to have it in New York,” he said.