5 Yankees who are flying under the radar
By Ryan Doyle
Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez is poised for another All-Star campaign
C Gary Sanchez
Four years ago, Gary Sanchez exploded onto the scene and dawned the Baby Bombers era. Since then, Sanchez’ career in pinstripes has been tumultuous, according to some pinstripe faithful and local columnists.
Sanchez was able to follow up his breakout rookie campaign with an All-Star 2017 but 2018 was a disaster. Sanchez battled injuries and struggled mightily on defense. His .186/.291/.406 slash line didn’t help alleviate his struggles defensively, either.
The player who helped push the franchise towards championship contention was turning into a scapegoat. Fans clamored about “laziness” and his inability to field his position. Although 2019 was an improvement, Sanchez disappeared in the postseason and took his fair share of flak following the Yankees heart-breaking ALCS exit.
That is exactly why Sanchez is flying under the radar heading into 2020. Take a look at other catchers around baseball. To complain about him being on the roster is irresponsible. Offensively, Sanchez is elite. He led the league in home runs at the position and finished in the top five in OPS, .wOBA and RBIs among catchers.
The Yankees brought in a new catching coach, one of the best pitchers in baseball and should have a relatively healthy lineup to provide protection once the season returns. Defense may never be his strong suit but offensively, there may not be a catcher who is better than Sanchez.
Let us pump the brakes on Sanchez too. While many may argue that Sanchez is a free-swinging slugger who provides little behind the plate aside from his cannon arm, Sanchez is only 27. He is entering the prime of his career.
A superstar on nearly every other team, Sanchez is just another piece of the puzzle for the Yankees. It’s time to stop sleeping on “The Kraken.”