Yankees manager warns Luke Voit could take AB’s from Greg Bird
Believe it or not, the hero of the Yankees 7-5, 10-inning victory on Friday night vs. the Orioles was Luke Voit. His two, two-run homers, led manager Aaron Boone to send a warning to first baseman Greg Bird.
Greg Bird, you are on notice. That’s because the crown jewel of the Chasen Shreve trade (sarcasm), Luke Voit, had his first multi-home run game in a come from behind Yankees win against the lowly Orioles.
Voit, 27, hit his first two-run shot in the fourth inning off of O’s starter Alex Cobb, tying the contest at two. The Missouri-native came through again, this time in the 10th inning, driving a two-run blast to right-center off of former Yankees prospect Cody Carroll. Caroll was sent to Baltimore as part of the Zach Britton deal.
Finishing the evening 3-for-5, Voit was serenaded from a large contingent of Yankee fans with a chorus of “LUUUKE,” even though his Players’ Weekend jersey read, “Louis.”
While this is Voit’s first real sign of being instrumental to the Yanks’ chances of advancing to the playoffs, Newsday asked manager Aaron Boone if Voit’s big night could lead to further opportunities.
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"“Sure,” Boone said. “You swing the bat like that, and you create opportunities for yourself. There are some opportunities to be had out there right now, and performance matters.”"
Despite Greg Bird scuffling to the tune of .130/.217/.296 in his last 15 games, which includes going 0-for-10 against the Marlins to begin the week — and an extended 2-for-27 rut, Boone was careful not to dismiss his usual first baseman.
"“There’s going to be opportunities for at-bats there. Performance certainly matters. I’m sure there’s going to be more opportunities for Birdie, more opportunities for Voit, and we’ll just try to match up and hopefully kind of get a hot hand going and see where we are.”"
Thanks in large part to Bird’s dismal .202/.292/.307 line with 11 home runs and 35 RBI in a career-high 247 at-bats, the Yankees production at first base ranks among baseball’s worst.
However, before Voit’s career-night, he was just 3-for-16 in five games with the Yanks, while playing in a total of 78 big league games with seven homers, so it’s way too early to claim him as anything other than a source of hope.
Now 80-47 in 127 games played, this is the fastest the Yankees have reached the 80-win mark since 2002.