Numbers are becoming more and more a part of the game when it comes to evaluating talent. You can use numbers to try and figure out some trends. For the next New York Yankees hitting coach, here are some trends from last season with some Yankees hitters that he will have to take a look at.
Fangraphs does a great job of compiling balls in play numbers, and in looking at them, a couple of things really stood out that needed to be fixed.
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Chris Young will see more time in the outfield than you think right now. Young can play all three outfield spots, and with the reputation of the Yankees outfielders not exactly being iron men, Young will see his fair share of time. In his time with the Mets last year, Young had the third highest popup percentage with 14.1%, ninth highest fly ball percentage with 35.4% and the seventh lowest groundball percentage at 28.9%. Young is what he is at this point in his career, however, that popup percentage needs to drop and he needs to hit some more line drives so he can get on base more.
New Yankees shortstop Didi Gregorius had the fifth highest fly ball percentage at 36.9% and the fourth lowest line drive percentage at 17%. While Gregorius isn’t a slugger, coming to Yankee stadium may help his numbers. He did hit over .500 on liners last year. If he hit more of those, his numbers could increase.
Mark Teixeira didn’t exactly have his best season last year, and he had some bad luck as well that can easily be fixed if he would just hit the ball the other way. Tex and Brian McCann each had a .137 average on ground balls. The league average on line drives was .609. The league average was .664. Some of that is luck, but Tex needs to do a better job in beating shifts next year.
The Yankees offense wasn’t great last season. The hope is that some of the new guys will help and the old guys will get better. If some of these numbers improve, it’ll go a long way in helping.