3 reasons Yankees fans owe Brian Cashman an apology after fast April start

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Anthony Rizzo #48 of the New York Yankees (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
Anthony Rizzo #48 of the New York Yankees (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images) /

1. Anthony Rizzo Was “The One”

Yup, we did it too. Biggest offenders by far. We joined the chorus demanding the Yankees to trade for Matt Olson or sign Freddie Freeman solely because we knew they weren’t going to bring in a high-profile shortstop or center fielder. The upgrade had to come somewhere, didn’t it?

Though we never ruled out Rizzo and, in fact, constantly reiterated he’d be a valuable addition should the Yankees re-sign him, it was evident the slugger, on paper, was Plan C.

Uh, not anymore, though.

Rizzo leads MLB with eight home runs and is hitting .290 with a 1.098 OPS and unthinkable 222 OPS+. Those numbers will not continue on this trajectory, but the spark he’s provided from the left side of the plate while very much taking advantage of the short porch (how long have fans been waiting for that?!) is the exact reason the Yankees are 13-6. He’s also stolen two bases and leads the league with four hit by pitches! What?

He’s also on a one-year deal worth $16 million with an option for 2023, so there’s no long-term investment holding the Yankees back from, say, making more additions at the trade deadline or making eventual offseason adjustments when countless names hit the open market.

Nobody here is saying Rizzo will out-perform Freeman and/or Olson, but the production, even when it regresses to the mean, will likely be exactly what the Yankees need for a fraction of the price. We don’t usually endorse that kind of thing, but we’re left with no choice at the moment.