TAMPA — Add three more positions and one more competition to Isiah Kiner-Falefa’s camp.
Ostensibly still in the shortstop debate, Kiner-Falefa will be thrown all around the outfield and might be entered into the center field derby.
As the Yankees tinker with Kiner-Falefa’s role and test whether their 2022 shortstop can be a super utilityman, they first will get a glimpse of IKF’s abilities in center field.
With Harrison Bader’s oblique strain expected to keep the everyday center fielder out for about six weeks, the Yankees will need capable center fielders to begin the season.
Aaron Boone is not ruling out that when real games begin in just over two weeks, Kiner-Falefa could be thrust into center field.
“It’s possible,” the Yankees manager said before the Yankees faced the Blue Jays at Steinbrenner Field on Tuesday. “I think he’d be natural out there. The ability to move around [and with] his speed and his athleticism.”
Kiner-Falefa shagged fly balls in the outfield before the game and is expected to get his first Grapefruit League action in center this weekend.
He will play third base Wednesday, the Yankees shifting him everywhere to see if they can develop a second Oswaldo Cabrera: a player who can be plugged in at just about any spot.
The Yankees also will try Kiner-Falefa in the corner outfield. The shortstop battle may be down to Oswald Peraza and Anthony Volpe, but the center-field competition is much more open.
There is not an obvious answer to the Yankees’ center-field problem, but there are a lot of possibilities beyond Kiner-Falefa:
The Yankees acquired Bader last season in part to lighten Judge’s load in the field, preferring he play a less-demanding corner-outfield spot.
He still likely will see time in the middle of the outfield, but the Yankees would prefer not playing him there every day.
Judge has yet to play center field in the spring.
“I wouldn’t really hesitate to put him [at center]. Not that I really want to do it,” Boone said. “He can go play center Opening Day having not done it [in the Grapefruit League] and be fine. He and I have talked about that.”
The former top prospect manned center field Tuesday and might be the strongest outfield defender behind Bader.
But the 25-year-old Florial has never hit in the majors and has not hit in camp, entering play 3-for-24 with a double, 11 strikeouts and five steals.
Florial is out of minor league options. If he does not make the Yankees’ roster out of camp, he would be exposed to waivers.
In major league camp as a non-roster invite, Ortega has impressed as a quick defender capable of playing all three outfield spots and a lefty hitter known for hitting opposing righties well.
Boone has called the 31-year-old “one of the guys that’s stood out to me.” Ortega was terrific with the Cubs in 2021, when he posted an .823 OPS with 11 home runs and 12 steals in 103 games, before taking a step back last season (.688 OPS).
“It was consistency in my at-bats. I was missing my pitch in the 2022 season,” Ortega said in explaining the drop-off. “Those  numbers can come back.”
The 33-year-old has been competing for the left-field job, but he might be a part of this competition, too.
Hicks has played center field twice this spring and appeared in 64 games in center last season.
As his offense plunged last season and the Yankee Stadium fans turned on him, his defense suffered, too.
Still, Boone has said Hicks can be a legitimate major league center fielder.
The bigger question will be whether the switch hitter can get his bat going after he finished last season with a .642 OPS.
Cabrera is battling with Hicks in left field after coming up through the system as an infielder. Like Kiner-Falefa, Cabrera is trying to learn center field and has appeared there in one Grapefruit League game.
Cabrera, who is 7-for-28 (.250) with two walks and a pair of homers during a nice spring, likely will keep moving around but could see regular-season time in center.
“[Kiner-Falefa] and Oswaldo I think generally have the ability to play a lot of positions. Not just in a pinch, but potentially really well,” Boone said.