The New York Yankees are back. With 2 wins against the Red Sox last night, the Yankees extended their record to 93-58, but that’s not accurate. The Yankees are actually 68-36 because games without Aaron Judge simply do not count. If you take away the 48 games played without Judge, The Yankees would only be 2.5 games back of the Boston Red Sox in the American League East. In fact, during those games in which Judge missed, the Yankees played someone named Shane Robinson. Seriously, that’s not a joke. In his time in the Big Leagues, Shane hit .143 with 1 home run. This is the guy they selected to fill the shoes of the most feared hitter in the American League? Now I know what you’re thinking and yes, I know the Yankees traded for Andrew McCutchen but that was for Brett Gardner and his inability to reach base. So, no, he did not fill in for Aaron Judge.
Not only has Judge been out, but the Yankees are also missing the most feared closer in baseball, Aroldis Chapman. I say most feared mainly because no one, including Chapman, knows where the hell the ball is going when it leaves his hand. This year, he has a 2.11 ERA with 31 saves out of 33 save opportunities. Chapman also has 84 strikeouts this season with 27 base-on-balls, which shows his little streaks of wildness. Chapman has missed a month, and with his return on September 19th, the Yankees have their go-to guy back in action.
The Yankees lineup is amazing. The best offensive line-up behind the Boston Red Sox*. With Judge returning to the lineup, it takes pressure off McCutchen, Stanton, Torres, Andújar, DiDi, and essentially everyone, except Gary Sanchez. Don’t even get me started on Gary Sanchez. But, without Judge, the Yankees did surprising mediocre, due to the acquisition of Luke Voit from the Cardinals. With the Yankees, he has played only 28 games, but he is hitting .292 with 7HR. Voit filled the void of Greg Bird, who, let’s be honest, absolutely shit the bed this season. So much so that Neil Walker is playing over him. One could argue that Bird never really found his stride this year, which in a way is true. But, when you’re chasing the Boston Red Sox and one of your players is hitting sub .200, you need to sit (also looking at you, Gary Sanchez).
Their pitching is surviving. Severino has struggled, but recently has started to find his groove. Tanaka is absolutely the most consistent. You know he’s giving up at least one solo shot, but he’ll give you a solid 7 innings most of the time. JA Happ has done amazing as a Yankee posting a 6-0 record. Lance Lynn is hit or miss and so is Sabathia but given Sabathia’s postseason experience, I believe they’ll use a four-man rotation in the playoffs, given that their bullpen alone can pitch a whole game if need be.
Lastly, we need Gary Sanchez. Without Gary Sanchez, this team gets nowhere. Gary is only hitting .187 with 16 HR. That needs to change. He also is tied for the league high in past balls, which just proves how lazy he is. Let’s hope that changes, because if it does, the Yankees will win the World Series.
*Aaron Judge was out 48 games so it technically doesn’t count
Update: Luke Voit hit 2 home runs tonight, bringing his total to 10, and now effectively owns David Price.