Yankees key stat improvement proves they really are savages
By Tim Capurso
The 2019 Yankees are outperforming last year’s team in a very important stat. It bodes well for their postseason aspirations.
In 2018, the Yankees failed in their quest for championship No. 28. The biggest reason why? An inability to produce hits when it mattered most.
Check this stat out. In their Division series loss to the hated Boston Red Sox, the Yanks were 4-for-26 with runners in scoring position, via Baseball Reference. That’s a .154 batting average.
Time and time again, the Yanks left men on base when they should have been cashing in runs.
Teams can get away with this in the regular season if they pitch well and hit home runs, as the 100-win Yankees did. But the playoffs expose all weaknesses.
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Fast forward to 2019 and it’s been a different story thus far. According to MLB.com, the 2018 team hit .253 with runners in scoring position. In 2019, the Yanks are hitting a robust .300 in these situations, a mark that currently leads the majors.
There’s even a different feeling surrounding these Yankees. The feeling is, when they get their chance to pounce, they won’t miss.
In this regard, the injuries have been a blessing in disguise for New York. Guys who weren’t supposed to play every day, like DJ LeMahieu, Gio Urshela and Mike Tauchman are bringing a more contact-oriented approach to the lineup.
These guys have helped to end the stigma of lineups past. For years now, the Bombers have been called “home run reliant.” The narrative was, they couldn’t beat you without the long ball.
Now, don’t get me wrong, this year’s team can flex their muscles just as well as any club of the past several years. The difference is, the 2019 Yanks don’t try to do too much at the dish. And that might make all the difference come playoff time.
So, the next time you turn on a Yankee game, pay particular attention to how the lineup operates in situations where they need to come through. I’ll bet that they do.
After all, they are a bunch of savages.