The New York Yankees, for the first time this season, are two games up on their longtime rival Boston Red Sox. When the season started, the Yankees had all the hype and all the leagues eyes on them, but the Red Sox stole the show with arguably the best start in baseball history. The Yankees, on the other hand, had some big names playing very little baseball.
Fast forward more than a third of the way through the season, and the Yankees have begun to heat up at the perfect time. The Sox, meanwhile, have hit a little bit of a cold front and can’t seem to find run support for their starters. When they do find runs for their pitchers, their bullpen can’t seem to find a way to hold a win. Ace pitcher Chris Sale has seen all of this too many times. pitching his heart out and only being 6-4. The Sox are 8-8 when he hits the hill and 1-4 when he Ks over 10 batters. Frustration must be rapidly festering in Boston, but its smooth sailing right now in the Bronx. players have all contributed to the Yankees dominance and in big ways.
Aaron Hicks/Brett Gardner
In the last 15 games, Brett Gardner has been batting .323 with 3 homers and six runs batted in. Gardner time and time again has proven to be a very hard out at the leadoff spot. Gardner has power, speed, a great eye, and very good ball location on his hits. A perfect leadoff hitter for a lineup that has the next murderers row behind batting behind him. When Gardner isn’t in the lineup, Aaron Hicks steps into the leadoff spot and does a very good job as well. In his last seven games, Hicks is batting .310 with four homers and six runs batted in as well. Hicks shows to be a promising leadoff man for the ball club. Hicks has power, speed and a laser of a hit when he makes contact. pitching around to Hicks is not something wise to do with the former rookie of the year waiting on deck (Aaron Judge).
It’s no secret that the Yankees have arguably the scariest lineup in baseball, it’s also no secret they have the scariest number-two hitter, as well. Aaron Judge has matured a lot from last season hitting-wise. Judge has cut down on his strikeouts a bit and is hitting for average, RBI’s and clutch hits to help his team. Obviously, Judge is no stranger to the long ball, where he has hit 19 of them this season and leads his team in that category. Judge is a monster in all aspects of the game and is a huge reason this Yankee team is 50-22 and number 1 in the AL East right now. In his last seven games, Judge is hitting .346 with one home run and four RBI’s and nine hits over that span.
Giancarlo Stanton, the name that broke the sports world when it was mentioned next to the New York Yankees. Stanton had a lot of expectations this season and recently has been fulfilling those expectations. In his last seven games,
Stanton is batting .346 with three homers, 7 RBI’s and nine hits. Stanton has been seeing the ball better these past few games and has slowly but surely showing signs of a heat up which would only benefit the lineup 10x more than its already thriving.
Didi is coming off one of the worst slumps in MLB history, but he is coming off of it in a big way. Didi has shown this club time and time again that he is the man for the job. Over the last seven games, he is batting a whopping .393 with one homer and three RBI’s and 11 hits. Didi’s glove has yet to disappoint and now that his bat is turned back on, we are seeing how dangerous he really is.
The rest of the Yankees have done an excellent job doing their part as well. Greg Bird is struggling a little bit coming off of his injury, but has shown signs of improvement. Gary Sanchez continues to struggle, but has upped his average from .150 to .194 and hit a game-tying two-run homer the other day. Sanchez is still a very feared man in that lineup and will stay that way throughout the season. Players like Gleybar Torres and Miguel Andujar have continued to stay in the spotlight and continue to push each other for the Rookie Of the Year award. Both players have 10-plus home runs this reason and both have batting averages of .290 or better. Torres is showing the league that he deserved all the hype he got and also continues to show teams why Brian Cashman refuses to let the young man go.
Yankee pitching has been flawless. All starters are pitching at full potential and the bullpen continues to be lights out. Closer Aroldis Chapman has been ‘goodnight city’ this season, standing with a 3-0 record, 1.07 ERA, and 57 Ks to add along with his 22 saves (2nd in MLB).
It’s no surprise that the Yankees are at the top of the division and its no surprise that they continue to dominate, the only question is of course, can they keep this up all year and finish with the hardware? Only time will tell.