The Yankees had a tremendous month in June. Any team who can bring together a 22-6 record in a calendar month are going to be out there in the lead and the Yankees expanded their lead in their division from 5.5 to 12.5. A truly impressive series of performances.
Also, to this point in the season the Yankees are managing to remain injury free. They have had relatively few new injuries and some of their long time unavailable players are working their way back.
Here’s our table of who did what with the bat in June.
Let’s see who led the way and who struggled:
|Marwin Gonzalez if/of||19||41||4||13||4||0||3||6||0||2||8||.317||.349||.634||.983|
|Matt Carpenter if/of||13||23||7||7||1||0||4||10||0||6||7||.304||.448||.870||1.318|
|DJ LeMahieu if||26||92||19||25||2||0||4||12||1||20||14||.272||.398||.424||.822|
|Isiah Kiner-Falefa ss||22||76||11||20||5||0||0||6||6||5||10||.263||.325||.329||.654|
|Jose Trevino c||20||57||8||15||1||1||3||12||0||4||11||.263||.317||.474||.791|
|Aaron Judge of||28||109||23||28||2||0||11||21||2||15||30||.257||.344||.578||.922|
|Aaron Hicks of||26||77||10||19||1||1||2||11||2||11||21||.247||.356||.364||.720|
|Gleyber Torres if||23||78||16||19||7||0||4||8||3||9||18||.244||.330||.487||.817|
|Anthony Rizzo 1b||27||94||17||22||0||0||10||22||3||13||22||.234||.357||.553||.910|
|Miguel Andujar if/of||3||9||2||2||1||0||0||1||1||1||3||.222||.273||.333||.606|
|Josh Donaldson 3b||22||83||5||17||7||0||1||7||1||8||28||.205||.274||.325||.599|
|Giancarlo Stanton of/dh||23||74||15||13||2||0||8||17||0||16||23||.176||.322||.527||.849|
|Kyle Higashioka c||14||41||7||7||1||0||4||7||0||1||9||.171||.190||.488||.678|
|Joey Gallo of||22||65||11||9||2||0||4||11||1||11||32||.138||.263||.354||.617|
Jose Trevino has had a truly amazing season. Kyle Higashioka is having a truly awful season.
The really is that if the Yankees hadn’t had to cover the injury to new signing Ben Rortvedt, they would never have brought in Trevino in exchange for Albert Abreu (who is now back in the Bronx). In doing so, they found a diamond-in-the rough.
In June, Tevino appeared in 20 games and batted .263 with 5 extra base hits. By contrast, Higashioka (who could have been still first choice behind the plate at this point) played in 14 games, also hit 5 extra base hits, including 4 home runs to Trevino’s 3, but produced a miserable batting average of only .138.
The Yankees’ first choice first baseman remains Anthony Rizzo with DJ LeMahieu also used in that position. Rizzo has power and defense but doesn’t hit for average as well as he might. Rizzo’s .234 in June is quite a contrast with LeMahieu’s .272. However, LeMahieu has only six extra base hits compared to Rizzo’s 10. Rizzo’s 10 are all homers, making him second on the team to Aaron Judge (11) on the month. LeMahieu is also playing second base, third base and designated hitter, so both workers are very definitely worth their hire.
Gleyber Torres is having a much more satisfactory season at second base this year than he did last year at shortstop. This has also allowed him to add power to the line up with 7 doubles and 4 home runs this month. A little more of a tendency to hit for average would serve him well.
Josh Donaldson is no better than the Yankees could have expected him to be as they considered his performance in the last few seasons. Indeed, this month’s performance was below his season average – a measly .205, although his 7 home runs added even more to the New York team’s cause in an area where they are already strong.
Isiah Kiner-Falefa hasn’t quite lived up to the reputation he brought with him to the Bronx when it comes to his defensive performance and with no power at the plate, there must be a serious question whether he has any future beyond this one season. He bats for a steady average and occasionally adds a double to the stats column, but he still awaits a first homer in the pinstripes. His defense has been adequate but not much better than that.
Marwin Gonzalez was an unlikely addition to the Yankees roster – two stints in Houston and one in Boston is not quite what the fanbase would look for in a new signing, but his advance in Spring Training and the variety of roles he can fulfil have made him an excellent choice. This month he played across a range of infield and outfield positions and led the team in batting average. Who could ask for anything more?
The Yankees’ outfield struggled a little in June, but then they are carrying some deadwood, which will always bring a team down-to-earth. Aaron Judge was, of course, the best of the set, although he seemed to be pressing a little at the plate – seeming like he always expected to be able to clear the fences. As previously mentioned, he hit it into the seats 11 times but, in the process, his batting average on the month, fell to .257.
However, it must be noted that his batting average made him the only one of the regular outfielders with a monthly average over ,250. Aaron Hicks‘ .247 was about the best the Yankees could hope for. Joey Gallo, of whom so much was expected, slumped alarmingly. In June, he hit a mere .138 and more importantly struck out 32 times.
Miguel Andujar spent a few more days on the Yankees’ roster before once again returning to Scranton. He added little to his argument for a regular spot on the team, but perhaps a little support for his desire to be traded.
Giancarlo Stanton came back from the injured list, but his performance upon his return was not what the Yankees were hoping for. He hit 8 home runs but only achieved a .176 average. He has done well in the field, but it can no longer be argued that his time in the field is not hindering his role on the Yankees’ team. It is time for him to become a most days designated hitter.
Matt Carpenter has had an amazing rebirth since being invited to join the Yankees, and there is no sign of the dream coming to and end. He led the team in slugging average, on base percentage and, as a consequence, on base percentage plus slugging (OPS). Not bad for somebody who seemed to be washed up and headed for retirement. Quite a wonderful story.