Versus Right-handed Pitching
This would be my defacto go-to lineup for the majority of contests, as I think it gives the Yankees the best chance of winning ball games.
- Jacoby Ellsbury (CF)
- Didi Gregorius (SS)
- Gary Sanchez (C)
- Matt Holliday (DH)
- Starlin Castro (2B)
- Greg Bird (1B)
- Aaron Judge (RF)
- Chase Headley (3B)
- Brett Gardner (LF)
Ellsbury and Gardner need to be broken up. They are way too similar to bat back-to-back. Besides, you gave Ellsbury all that money to be your table setter, batting him second is a waste. In the event Ellsbury does get on base, Girardi won’t give him the steal sign because Sanchez and his RBI potential are up next.
I know someone out there is going to complain that I dropped Gardner to No. 9 because he led the club last season in walks with 70 and had a OBP of .351. When you factor in his 106 strikeouts and .261 average, his numbers look much less inspiring.
Getting runners on base to drive in was a huge problem for last year’s team, so it’s time to shake things up from the top on down to the bottom. Besides, Gardner batting ninth gives the team a second leadoff hitter with a bit of pop, once the lineup rolls over.
I’m not totally sold on Castro as a No. 5 hitter, and he could be swapped with Gregorius depending on which one of the two works more counts, but until Bird and Judge prove they can consistently handle big league pitching, he’s the best option this lineup has to offer. Headley could also move up a spot with Judge moving down, but Judge’s potential to drive the ball out of the park lends itself to batting a spot higher because there is a chance more men will be on base… hopefully.