Yankees still waiting for Giancarlo Stanton to break out
The Yankees are on a roll of late winning 9 of their last 10 with the offense leading the way. However, while most of the lineup has contributed to the recent hot streak new slugger Giancarlo Stanton has yet to breakout and really struggled during his first month as a Yankee.
Newly acquired stars have a history of struggling and getting booed when they first come to the Yankees and Stanton was no exception to that in the month of April. The reigning NL MVP struck out 43 times in only 113 at-bats (38% K rate) and batted .230 in his first month as a Yankee. His power numbers weren’t terrible with five home runs, 15 RBI, and a .737 OPS, but there’s definitely more to be desired from Stanton given his All-Star track record.
Inconsistency has plagued Stanton to start the season as at times he’s looked close to coming around only to follow that up with a lackluster performance. That was the case last Tuesday against the Twins when after he recorded a four-hit game and a home run on Monday he followed that up with an 0-4 and three strikeouts.
On Wednesday he started a mini five-game hitting streak only to see that snapped on Monday with another 0-4 and three strikeout night against Charlie Morton and the Astros.
The Yankees know that eventually, Stanton is going to break out and go on one of his patented home run tears and fortunately for them, their offense is managing just fine without him at the moment. Entering play today the Yankees are first in all the major offensive categories despite the limited production from Stanton.
That speaks to the depth of their lineup, but as the team continues their tough stretch of games against some of the best pitching in the AL they could really use a boost in power from Stanton. Following another game of scoring one run or less against the Astros at Minute Maid Park these next three games would be the perfect time for Stanton to remind everyone why the Yankees traded for him.
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Right now he’s getting outshined by the likes of Didi Gregorius, Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez and even Tyler Austin. That’s nothing to be ashamed of, but coming off of his historic 59 home run season the expectation from many was that he would lead the way in the power department.
Of course, it’s still very early and Stanton could heat up quickly and start carrying this Yankees offense, but in New York, everything is magnified each day his struggles continue.
The good news is that last year in Miami Stanton had similar power numbers in April with seven home runs and 16 RBI. It was during the second half of the season where he really took off with 12 home runs in July and an incredible 18 bombs in August. Yankee fans are historically impatient so for Stanton’s sake you hope that he could have a month like that sooner rather than later to quiet all of his critics.
By all accounts, Stanton has handled himself with class when dealing with the media and the pressure of playing in New York isn’t getting to him. His attitude remains upbeat and positive and it seems like he is ecstatic to finally be playing for a winning organization. That will help him mentally as he continues to grind and tries to snap out of his funk.
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It’s been a difficult adjustment period for Stanton in a new city and a new league but as the weather warms up it’s only a matter of time before his bat does as well. He’s too good and there’s too much talent around him for this lack of production to continue.
Expect big things from him in May.