Yankees: Predicting statistical leaders for the 2018 season

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Hits: Didi Gregorius 

It seems likely that some combination of Judge, Stanton, and Sanchez will lead the team in the power categories but no Yankee will pick up more hits than Didi. Didi is coming off another career year as he has continued to get better in every statistical area since taking over for Derek Jeter back in 2015. Last year he started the season on the DL and basically missed the entire month of April, but when he returned he was outstanding the rest of the way and throughout the team’s postseason run.

In only 136 games Didi picked up 153 hits, just one shy of Aaron Judge’s team-leading total of 154. He also hit .287 with 87 RBI and broke the Yankees single-season record for home runs by a shortstop with 25, passing the Captain’s 24.

One thing Didi does better than anyone in this Yankee lineup is put the ball in play. In a lineup that will probably strike out more than most Didi only did so 70 times in 2017. He’s also doesn’t walk much but with all these three true outcome guys (HR/BB/K) in today’s game that’s a very low strikeout total.

Didi is also a hitter who doesn’t get fazed by left-handed pitchers. He stays inside the ball extremely well and he doesn’t budge at a weird arm angle or a nasty breaking ball. Over the last two seasons, he’s hit a combined .294 against southpaws. His power numbers are much better against righties, but his ability to make consistent contact against lefties will help him find more holes and pick up more hits.

If Didi can replicate the kind of year he had in 2017 while staying healthy over the course of an entire season his hit total could range anywhere from 180-200. That should be more than enough to lead this year’s Yankee squad. It should also finally lead to his first All-Star game appearance.