Why this Yankees promotion means more to Clint Frazier

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Ask a lot of big leaguers what the most memorable day of their career is and they point to the first day in the majors.

Clint Frazier made his major league debut last year in Houston, but the left fielder was more jazzed about playing his first big league game of the season than tasting the big leagues for the first time.

“I am more excited this year because I earned the promotion, last year it was injuries,’’ Frazier said before facing Royals lefty Danny Duffy as the Yankees’ DH on Saturday night at Kauffman Stadium. “I feel I earned this one.’’

When Frazier tumbled to the warning track in Bradenton, Fla., on Feb. 24 he hit the back of his head against the left field wall but didn’t come out of the game. Nevertheless, he was diagnosed with a concussion that at times delivered debilitating affects to the point where returning to the majors was secondary.

“I wasn’t thinking about getting back to the big leagues, I was thinking about getting back to myself,’’ said Frazier, who was recalled from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Tuesday but didn’t play in the first two games. “The whole time I was thinking about my health first over playing because it was affecting my everyday lifestyle and there was no finish line.’’

After not hitting much while on a minor league rehab assignment for Single-A Tampa and SWB, Frazier was activated from the DL and optioned to SWB. That’s where he believes he earned the promotion, because in 11 games he hit .395 (17-for-43) with three homers and four RBIs.

Manager Aaron Boone said it is possible Frazier would start in the outfield on Sunday when the Yankees face lefty Eric Skoglund.

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