Yankees: DJ LeMahieu is helping 2019 team do what they couldn’t in 2018
The Yankees finished the 2018 season with a 44-32 record (57.9 winning percentage) against the AL East. They were 12-7 against Baltimore, 9-10 against Boston, 13-6 against Toronto and 10-9 versus Tampa Bay.
Comparing the 2018 Yankees to the 2019 Yanks thus far — the 2018 Bombers were 6-4 against Baltimore, 3-3 against Boston, 4-2 against Toronto and 5-4 versus the Tampa Bay.
In 2019, Yanks are 10-2 against Baltimore, 4-1 against Boston, 1-2 against Toronto and 7-2 versus Tampa.
The Yankees currently hold winning records against all AL East teams except Toronto. In order to keep up their winning record against all of the AL East teams, the Yanks need to beat the Blue Jays in the three-game series beginning on July 12.
The Bombers also swept the Rays in 2019 instead of being swept by them in 2018.
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Trading Sonny Gray is one of the reasons that the Yanks have improved their record against the AL East. In games started by Gray, the 2018 Yanks were 4-1 against Baltimore, 1-2 against Boston, 2-3 against Toronto and 1-2 against Tampa Bay.
Gray had a losing record against every team in the AL East in 2018 except the O’s, which leaves a lot to be desired since the 2018 Orioles made top five on a list of worst sports teams ever.
The addition of DJ LeMahieu is another reason the Yanks have improved their record against AL East clubs.
LeMahieu is hitting .478 with runners in scoring position with 42 RBIs and four home runs — and has also hit 10 home runs on the season. His career high, set last year, was 15.
A huge, eye-opening example of the Bombers failing to hit with RISP in ’18 is when they went from July 11 to August 1 without getting a hit with the bases loaded.
The Yankees are hitting .387 with the bases loaded in 2019, the second best in MLB, according to Baseball Reference, which is a major improvement from last year — and as the team gets healthier and stronger, hopefully, it will continue to follow the same pattern.