The New York Yankees have been on a roll as of late. And with that hot streak comes a deeper introspective on the team. So we look to three players helping to elevate the Yankees play. And three others that need to step it up to assist the team.
1 Up: Aroldis Chapman
The Yankees closer has been dominant this season. Across 21.2 innings this season, Chapman has an ERA of 1.66 and 32 strikeouts. But digging in on his seven most recent innings, Aroldis has an ERA of 0.00 with 11 strikeouts in just seven innings. Add in six saves to aid the Yankees to victory this season.
1 Down: Joe Harvey
Joe Harvey was not expected to be a part of the Yankees bullpen in 2019. (Potentially not ever, if we’re honest.) But he has found his way to the Bronx this season. And it is for the season that Harvey has an ERA of 4.50. But unlike Aroldis Chapman, digging into Harvey’s most recent exploits are trending in the wrong direction. Over Harvey’s last seven innings pitched, Joe has an ERA of 6.43 while surrendering nine hits and walking 6 with five earned runs. Joe Harvey’s ineffectiveness may not have caused the Yanks to lose any games so far. But his presence in the bullpen may mean his call to arms will be needed in a crucial moment. So Joe Harvey must find a way to correct his issues and become a valuable arm out of the Yankee pen.
2 Up: Clint Frazier
Clint Frazier has been on fire, well offensively, and for the moment we will ignore some defensive lapses. For the season, Clint has gone through two “hot streaks” that were broken up by an IL stint. Clint Frazier is slashing .270/.314/.525 for the season and already added a career hit total in Home Runs and RBI’s with 10/28 respectively. The loss of Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton will always be felt as they are “Superstars” in the game of baseball. But the Yankees need to rush them back has been mitigated by the offensive play of Clint Frazier.
2 Down: Kendrys Morales
The switch-hitting First Baseman/DH has struggled this season, and that is putting it mildly. In 144 at-bats this season, Morales has a slash line of .188/.310/.250. Not an impressive line for someone who’s best position is “Designed Hitter.” And as if that slash line wasn’t bad enough, looking at Kendrys last 26 ab’s is even worse. Over the last 26 at-bats, Morales has a slash line of .077/.250/.077. (Talk about yikes.) The Bronx Bombers have not suffered thus far for runs even with Morales’ struggles. But the sooner the Bombers get back their big bats, the better off the Yankees will be this season.
3 Up: Thairo Estrada
Another player that wasn’t expected to be a part of the 2019 Yankees roster is Thairo Estrada. But unlike Joe Harvey, Thairo is making the most of his appearance in the “bigs.” Thairo was projected to be a Ronald Torreyes type but with more “pop” in his bat. And with a slash line of .304/.347/.565 that is proving to be the case. Estrada has three home runs so far, two of which were to the opposite field. Add in eleven RBI’s and two stolen bases to go along with solid defense, and it’s no surprise that Estrada is getting a ton of playing time.
3 Down: Austin Romine
Logical-minded Yankee fans understand that Austin Romine is the backup backstop for a reason. And when looking at his career slash line (.226/.269/.339), you can understand why he’s the backup. But over the past couple of seasons with Gary Sanchez seeing some time on the IL, Romine has seen more playing time. And it’s been during those scenarios that Austin plays and struggles. This season in 83 at-bats, Romine has an even worse slash line of .217/.226/.277. Austin works well with the pitching staff, and at times his offensive woes can be overlooked. But the defense has been as solid this year as in the past, and the offense seems worse. Which is not a good combination for the career backup catcher.
B.O.L.O: Aaron Judge
It has been a long and quiet Injured List stint for the “Sentencer” of the New York Yankees, Aaron Judge. But recently word came out that Aaron is making some progress. The Yanks have played well in his absence, but nothing is as good as having Aaron Judge on the field. So the sooner a healthy Aaron Judge returns, the sooner the Bronx Bombers annihilate the rest of Major League Baseball.