New York Rangers Overcome Sluggish Start to Defeat the Sabres

Igor Shesterkin made 36 saves, and the New York Rangers keep pace in the East Division playoff race with a 3-1 win against the Buffalo Sabres.

In the playoff race, the Rangers are still four points behind the Bruins, who defeated the Penguins on Tuesday night. However, the Blueshirts are now just five points behind the New York Islanders, who fell to Washington. The Rangers and Islanders play in a home-and-home series on Thursday and Saturday.

Brendan Smith put the Rangers in front 1-0 at 2:22 of the second period. The Sabres tied the game on a Sam Reinhart goal.

Alexis Lafreniere broke a tie in the third period for the Rangers, who won their third straight to sweep the two-game series.

Mika Zibanejad extended the lead to 3-1 on a power play at 13:49 of the third period.

Ryan Strome picked up two assists in the game, which gave him his 300th career NHL point.

With Zibanejad’s goal, the Rangers are the only NHL team that has five players (Artemi Panarin, Adam Fox, Mika Zibanejad, Pavel Buchnevich and Ryan Strome) who have recorded at least 44 points in 2020-21.

Lafreniere nets game-winner to help keep the New York Rangers in the playoff race.

Lafreniere talked about his game-winning goal during his post-game interview. “It was a great forecheck by our line. Stromer made a nice pass and I just tried to shoot it as quick as I could and was lucky enough to go in. Great play by my linemates.”

Per the NHL Public Relations, Lafrenière is the fifth teenager who has recorded 10+ goals in a season in Ranger history.

“The fact that we won six games from the Devils and Sabres is no small feat”, head coach David Quinn said in his post-game Zoom conference. “It’s the National Hockey League and it is not easy to beat teams.”

On the Lafreniere goal, Quinn said, “It was important that he scored that goal because of the circumstances. He’s really played well lately. He’s played really well in the last month. People have made a big deal about his stats earlier in the season but he has had a really good rookie year.”

The Rangers have won nine of their last 11 home games and have also earned at least one point in 11 of its last 13 home games.



New York Yankees Recap: Corey Kluber and 12 hits win it for the Yankees

New York Yankees, Corey Kluber

The New York Yankees met up with the Baltimore Orioles for the second night in a row and game two of a four-game set at Orioles Park at Camden Yards. The Orioles won the first game 4-2. The  Yankees hoped to win tonight to have a chance for a series win. The Yankees have always played well at Camden Yards, but anything can happen tonight with the Yankees not hitting. The Yankees started Corey Kluber, and for the Orioles, it was Bruce Zimmermann. It was a partly cloudy night for baseball with a light 82-degree breeze at game time.

DJ LeMahieu led off the first against Zimmermann and greeting Zim with a double to left. Giancarlo Stanton struck out. Aaron Judge singled DJ to third base. Gio Urshela moved up to the third spot in the lineup had a sac fly to center to drive in DJ for the Yankees early going. Gleyber Torres, with two outs, flew out to left field. At the bottom, Mullins popped out to the catcher. Mancini went down on strikes. Stewart lined out to Torres to end the 1-2-3 inning for Kluber. No score.

The top of the second inning was led off by Aaron Hicks, who struck out swinging. Clint Frazier flew out to the center field. Kyle Higashioka had a two-out single to left. Rougie Odor singled to left, moving Higgy to second. LeMahieu popped out to second to end the half, but the Yankee got the lead in the game. At the bottom, Maikel Franco flew to Aaron Judge in right. Austin Hays walked. Chance Sisco was hit on the legs moving Hays to second base. Ryan Mountcastle hit into a double play ending the inning. Yankees 1 Orioles 0.

Giancarlo Stanton led off the third inning by striking out on the tenth pitch of the at-bat. Aaron Judge hit a 397′ line-drive homer to left-center. Urshela stuck out. Gleyber Torres had a two-out double to the left-field wall. Aaron Hicks lined out to the shortstop to end the half, but the Yankees tacked on another run. At the bottom, Rio Ruiz went down on strikes. Pat Valaika flew out to Judge. Mullins went down on strikes for another 1-2-3 inning for Kluber. Yankees 2 O’s 0.

The New York Yankees led off the fourth with Clint Frazier flying out. Kyle Higashioka hit a home run. Rougie Odor lined to short for the second out. LeMahieu singled to left. Stanton hit a rocket to the middle, moving DJ to second. Judge walked the bases full of Yankees. A pitching change brought in Dillon Tate to face Gio Urshela, who singled driving in LeMahieu, but Stanton trying to score, was called out. Yankees  4 O’s 0.  At the bottom, Mancini led off with an inning opening double. Stewart ground out with Mancini moving to third base. Franco singled in Mancini. Hays went down on strikes looking for the second out. Sisco grounded out to Odor. Yankees 4 O’s 1.

Gleber Torres started the fifth inning by singling to center. Aaron Hicks at the plate, but Torres was called out trying to steal second base. Hick ground out. Frazier chopped out to the pitcher Tate to end the inning. Mountcastle led off the bottom by flying out to Frazier. Ruiz singled. Valaika flew out to Judge. Mullins popped out to Torres. Yankees 4 O’s 1.

Kyle Higashioka led off the sixth inning, lining out. Rougie Odor lined out on a super bullet shot to second base. LeMahieu grounded out to short for a quick Tate inning. With Corey Kluber still on the mound for his longest outing of the year, Mancini walked. Stewart blooped out to Hicks. Franco singled to center, moving Mancini to third base. Hays hit sharply to Urshela for out number two. Sisco lined to first to end the inning. Yankees 4 O’s 1.

Giancarlo Stanton led off the seventh inning, hitting his sixth home run of the season (434′). Judge struck out swinging, and that did it for Tate. The new pitcher was Cole Sulser facing Gio Urshela, who flew out to center. Torres, with two outs, struck out swinging to end the scoreless half. Kluber, with 81 pitches, was back out to face Mountcastle, who led off at the bottom and singled to left. Ruiz struck out. Valaika flew out to far-right, but Judge hauled it in for the second out. Mullins singled, which was the night for Corey Kluber, who has by far his best outing of the season. He was replaced by Jonathan Loaisiga, facing Mancini, who lined out. Yankees 5 O’s 1.

Aaron Hicks led off the eighth inning for the New York Yankees by striking out swinging. Clint Frazier flew out, and Higashioka popped up to catcher Sisco. At the bottom of the eighth, Stewart led off against Loaisiga walking. Franco struck out swinging. Hays singled, moving Stewart to second base. Sisco, with one out, struck out for the second out. Mountcastle struck out for 3 strikeouts in the inning for Loaisiga. Yankees 5 O’s 1.

Rougie Odor led off the ninth for the New York Yankees walking. LeMahieu also walked. Stanton hit into a double play moving Odor to third base. Aaron Judge struck out swinging to end the Yankee night. At the bottom, with last licks on the line for the Orioles, Rio Ruiz faced Lucas Luetge, and he ground out to Urshela for the first out. Pat Valaika flew out to Frazier, replacing Judge in right. Cedric Mullins ground out to first to end the game.

Final score New York Yankees 5 the Baltimore Orioles 1. The winning pitcher was Corey Kluber, and the loser was Bruce Zimmermann.


Richards 10 K’s Propels Red Sox To 2-1 Win Over Mets

New York Mets, David Peterson

Another day, another game where the New York Mets failed to support a strong outing from their starting pitcher. The Boston Red Sox were not much better but pushed across enough runs to support a terrific outing from Garrett Richards. They only needed five hits to support themselves in the 2-1 victory in game one of their two-game set.

Darryl Strawberry called into the SNY telecast, and the Mets desperately needed his bat against Richards. He concocted the formula most pitchers have used to beat the Mets, bend but do not break. Richards pitched seven innings, allowed seven hits, and struck out 10 in his longest outing of the season. The biggest obstacle for Richards in the past was his inability to find the strike zone, but he did not any free passes on Tuesday.

Richards also had just one three-ball count during the entire outing. Jeff McNeil‘s second-inning home run was the only damage he allowed on the night. Richards also had help from J.D. Martinez in the outfield as he recorded an assist during a rare outfield appearance. Matt Andriese and Matt Barnes shut the door by throwing 1-2-3 innings in the eighth and ninth.

Sorry Petey

David Peterson received the deGrom treatment as the tough-luck loser. Peterson did a great job to quiet a very hot Red Sox offense. In six innings, he kept the Sox to just two runs on four hits. Peterson recorded 15 outs on the ground and served up weak contact all night. Bobby Dalbec tagged him for a third-inning solo homer, and Rafael Devers bloop single gave the Red Sox the lead in the sixth inning.

This loss was another example of how bad of an offensive funk the Mets are in. Manager Luis Rojas can mix up the lineup all he wants, but if the hitters do not produce, the team will not win. Hopefully, Michael Conforto‘s two hits, including double, shows his slump is coming to an end. The biggest concern is Francisco Lindor, who barely hit the ball out of the infield. Lindor is off-balanced, overswinging, and swinging at pitches outside of his zone. He needs just one solid drive into the gap to get himself going and out of his month-long slump.

Jacob deGrom hopes to get the Mets back in the win column on Wednesday against Nick Pivetta. The first pitch is an earlier 6:40 p.m. start from Citi Field.

UFC: TJ Dillashaw – Cory Sandhagen is off; Michelle Waterson – Marina Rodriguez to headline May 8th card

The UFC return of TJ Dillashaw (16-4) is going to take a little longer. The former bantamweight champion took to Instagram tonight to announce that he suffered a bad cut during training and his main event against Cory Sandhagen is off (14-2).

The fight was scheduled to headline the UFC‘s Fight Night on May 8th. Dillashaw said in the post that they are working on rebooking the fight as soon as possible. It’s likely we will see the fight in either late May or early June depending on how the cut heals.

This fight had extreme importance in the UFC‘s bantamweight division. This was being looked at as a title eliminator and it still likely will be. Originally, the UFC was planning on having the winner of this fight face the winner of the Petr Yan – Aljamain Sterling fight.

However, after Sterling won by DQ, things took at turn. The promotion started working on the rematch, but Sterling opted for neck surgery which will keep him out of action until near the end of the year.

The UFC was supposedly kicking the tires on having Dillashaw or Sandhagen fight Yan for an interim title depending on how Sterling was recovering. Ultimately, that might still happen, but a lot will depend on Dillashaw’s recovery.

New UFC main event

With Dillashaw out of the fight, the UFC has shifted their attention to a new headliner. According to ESPN’s Ariel Helwani, the front runner for the new headlining fight is Michelle Waterson (18-8) – Marina Rodriguez (13-1-2).

Waterson last fought in September in a main event against Angela Hill. That night, those two stole the show and Waterson walked away with a split decision victory.

We last saw Marina Rodriguez at UFC 257 when she took on Amanda Ribas. Ribas had a ton of momentum heading into that fight, but Rodriguez stopped it all with a TKO in the second round. This should be a fantastic matchup and a very important one for the strawweight division.

Yankees strike trade, sending Mike Tauchman packing for pitching

Mike Tauchman, New York Yankees

The New York Yankees announced on Tuesday before the first pitch against the Baltimore Orioles that they were trading outfielder Mike Tauchman for pitching. Tauchman, who has played in 11 games this year, enjoying only 16 plate appearances, will make his way over to the San Francisco Giants in exchange for left-handed pitcher Wandy Peralta.

Per the Yankees PR:


The New York Yankees announced today that they have acquired LHP Wandy Peralta and a player to be named later from the San Francisco Giants in exchange for OF Mike Tauchman.

Peralta, 29, is 2-1 with two saves and a 5.40 ERA (8.1IP, 11H, 5ER, 3BB, 8K, 1HR) in 10 relief appearances with the Giants in 2021. Over six Major League seasons with the Cincinnati Reds (2016-19) and San Francisco Giants (2019-21), he has gone 9-9 with two saves and a 4.72 ERA (192.2IP, 195H, 110R/101ER, 92BB, 158K, 26HR) in 220 relief appearances.

Peralta went 1-1 with a 3.29 ERA in 2020, making 25 relief outings. Against left-handed batters, he logged a .171 average BA against, posting 12 strikeouts. In fact, he struck out at least one batter in 19 of his 25 games, averaging 8.23 strikeouts per 9.0 innings. The Dominican Republic native was originally signed by Cincinnati in 2009 but was claimed by San Francisco in 2019.

Tauchman, on the other hand, has played a significant part for the Yankees the past few seasons, earning a .277 average with 13 homers and 47 RBIs in 2019, but wasn’t able to make a similar impact in 2020, failing to hit a home run.

In addition, the Yankees also recalled infielder Tyler Wade from the alternate site.

UFC: Jake Paul on Daniel Cormier confrontation: ‘You had your chance and you b*tched out’

This past Saturday at UFC 261 a confrontation outside of the octagon stole some headlines. That confrontation was between the former two-division champion Daniel Cormier (22-3, 1 NC) and internet celebrity turned boxer Jake Paul (3-0 Boxing).

Cormier went over to Jake Paul and got in his face with a simple message, “Don’t play with me.” The former UFC champion is not a fan of Paul’s antics and he’s had enough of the chirping.

Yesterday, the former UFC champion told Ariel Helwani that he would drop down to 205 pounds to fight Jake Paul. However, the stipulation was that it would have to be in a mixed martial arts competition.

Today, Helwani interviewed Jake Paul about his altercation with Cormier. Paul was very vocal on how he felt about the altercation with the former UFC champion.

“Are you about your sh*t or are you not about your sh*t. Dana White wouldn’t have done anything if you wanted to lay hands on me. You had your chance and you b*tched out. It’s embarrassing and you’re an embarrassment. You’re not a man of your word.”

Jake Paul on Daniel Cormier altercation

UFC vs Jake Paul

Jake Paul went on to say that he has no interest in fighting Cormier in a MMA match. However, he would be fully willing to box him. His reasoning was that he’s never trained in MMA but Cormier has trained in striking.

With that, I think it’s safe to say we will never see Paul fight the former two-division UFC champion. Helwani went on to ask Paul about potential opponents and if he wants to fight again this year.

Paul said that he wanted to box again this year and his number once choice comes from the UFC 262 co-main event. The number one target on Jake Paul’s hit list is Stockton’s Nate Diaz (20-12).

Diaz has two fights left on his current UFC contract so the odds of that happening are extremely low. On the other hand another fighter who is no longer under contract with the UFC is Tyron Woodley (19-7-1).

The former welterweight champion is someone that Jake Paul said he’d be interested in boxing. Now, I don’t believe that Paul would actually sign up to face Woodley, but he said he’d be interested.

For now, I think the DC and Jake Paul stuff will be put behind us outside of some internet trolling from Jake Paul.

New York Giants: Micah Parsons is Peter King’s projected pick for Big Blue

new york giants, micah parsons

Headed into the final stretch before the draft, one of the top defensive prospects linked to the New York Giants is Micah Parsons. The Giants don’t take linebackers in the first round very often, but they have a tendency to make good picks when they do take a leap of faith on one. A lot of people think Parsons deserves to be the player that breaks their streak of not spending their first pick on this position. And some analysts think this is an actual possibility.

One of the ones mocking Parsons to the Giants is Peter King, who released his final mock draft and made the bold prediction that the Giants will take Parsons over DeVonta Smith, Rashawn Slater, or any other player on offense.

Last Giants’ first-round linebacker: Carl Banks, 1983. Okay, so once every 38 years a linebacker comes out who’s worth it. The Giants always do a good job disguising their intentions, and this year they’ve been particularly good. Three things I’ve heard: Joe Judge loves DeVonta Smith; the organization likes cornerback Jaycee Horn a lot; and Dave Gettleman loves Parsons. If you can get past some of the immature pockmarks on his résumé, there is so much to love. Easily the best linebacker in the draft, with the ability to be a top edge player and double as a sideline-to-sideline presence. Now, he’s only a one-year starter, didn’t play football last year, and the Giants will have to be comfortable with the fact he’s had maturity issues. Smith or Horn could easily be the pick here—Parsons is my best guess—but 4.36-in-the-40 linebackers are quite rare.

The pros and cons of taking Parsons

There’s both good sides and bad sides to this potential pick. The good side is that Parsons is one of the best physical prospects available and, while he’s not the most experienced college player, was definitely a standout at that level for the time that he did play.

The Giants would be able to find a spot for him to make an impact immediately. And in terms of defensive prospects, Parsons is probably the best player available when the Giants pick – if he is still on the board by then.

The main problem that will be brought up is character concerns. Parsons has been involved in controversy, including an unclear situation at Penn State where one transfer accused several former teammates of hazing. That list of players included Parsons, but it also included Panthers defensive end Yetur Gross-Matos and the Carolina organization hasn’t apparently had a problem with him.

Worries about character concerns come out a lot for players entering the draft, and many great players in the past have been targeted by doubts about their character before being drafted. Many times, unless there’s something a bit more substantial, it’s best to not worry too much about it. This might just be one of those times.

Parsons, after all, passes the eye test in this area. He’s not a Johnny Manziel or a John Rosen – a player whose behavior in public or with the press foreshadows clashes with teammates. He’s not even an Eli Apple, whose mom’s social media antics could have been foreseen from a mile away.

So if the Giants do take Parsons? Don’t worry too much about the ‘character concerns’ reports. They’re pretty vague so far and seem to paint a similar picture to the usual rumors that come out every year at about this time – rumors that aren’t always accurate, or supported by those who have more experience with the player up close.

New York Jets: Offensive mid-major prospects (beyond Zach Wilson)

New York Jets

The New York Jets could use all the help they can get at the NFL Draft and should thus leave no stone unturned.

When you’re coming off a two-win season in the latest addition to a playoff drought that’s getting old enough to see a PG-13 movie on it’s own, you probably can use all the help you can get.

The New York Jets, fresh off a brutal season even by their own star-crossed standards, should thus leave no proverbial stone unturned as the NFL Draft commences on Thursday (8 p.m. ET, ABC/ESPN/NFL Network). Sure, talent from the “Power Five” conferences (and Notre Dame) rules the draft boards across the league, but prospects from the unsung mid-major conferences and schools deserve their fair share, especially with their seasons shortened or outright cancelled.

Jets fans have certainly had their share of this phenomenon, as many believe that Zach Wilson from independent BYU will hear his name called after Trevor Lawrence. But a plethora of mid-major talent resides beyond Provo and the Jets aren’t in a position to turn down assistance from any source.

ESM has six names to keep an eye on as the walk to the commissioner’s podium nears…

T Spencer Brown, Northern Iowa

The Jets apparently have the new quarterback’s blind side taken care of in the form of Mekhi Becton. But the right side is a bit less certain with George Fant and Chuma Edoga the current names on the depth chart. Brown didn’t partake in UNI’s shortened season (which ended earlier this month) but put the lost time to good use: he’s been working out and training under the guidance of former San Francisco mainstay Joe Staley.

Brown’s draft stock, perhaps unfairly, dropped after he opted out of the 2021 proceedings, which could allow the Jets to scoop him up on the latter days. They’re currently on pace to roll out the same starting five blockers they had in last season’s opener. Adding Brown could at least apply some heat on the right side come training camp.

WR D’Wayne Eskridge, Western Michigan 

Eskridge has a bit of history with the Jets or at least a member of their new coaching staff. While a shared WMU experience with Corey Davis surely can’t hurt, All-MAC first-teamer’s term in Kalamazoo coincided with assistant offensive line coach Jake Moreland’s time as offensive coordinator with the Broncos.

As a former defensive back and track star who became renowned for his speed, Eskridge could define the balance that general manager Joe Douglas is looking for. He even became an accomplished special teams contributor, serving as the Broncos’ primary kick returner during their six-game endeavor last fall. The Jets have ranked 22nd and 28th in return average over the last two seasons after losing Pro Bowler Andre Roberts. It seems like a trivial matter, but starting with good field position could make the job of the new franchise quarterback much easier.

QB Trey Lance, North Dakota State

The consensus No. 2 pick appears to be Wilson, but Lance deserves his due diligence from Thursday’s early choosers. As the latest NFL hopeful emerging from the gridiron dynasty in Fargo, Lance won the 2019 Walter Payton Award the FCS equivalent of the Heisman whose previous winners include Steve McNair, Brian Westbrook, Tony Romo, and Cooper Kupp. Lance was responsible for 3,886 yards and 42 touchdowns in 2019 and threw no interceptions in 287 attempts.

Recency bias may work against Lance, as he struggled in a de facto exhibition against Central Arkansas last fall (he sat out of NDSU’s ongoing spring season). Teams have also become increasingly wary of one-season wonders (i.e. Mitchell Trubisky) as Lance started only one year with the Bison. But his rushing talents could tantalize the Jets, who have never worked with a mobile quarterback for an extended period of time (Geno Smith being a rare exception).

C Quinn Meinerz, Wisconsin-Whitewater

Division III draft picks are few and far between, though Jets fans may remember Joe Fields (Widener) and undrafted Bruce Harper (Kutztown) fondly. Meinerz, a D3 All-American, could be next and could as an instant contributor if the Jets were to inquire for his services. The outright cancellation of the Warhawks’ season made it difficult for Meinerz to make an impact, but took advantage of an invite to Mobile’s Senior Bowl, where he showcased strong hands and athleticism.

Finding the right center will be vital to the Jets’ new operations under the incoming quarterback. Sam Darnold went through three different primary centers during his three-year term. The last, Connor McGovern, is set to return but the Jets could probably still look to upgrade the interior through this diamond in the rough.

TE: Quintin Morris, Bowling Green

If the Jets are looking to put some heat on Chris Herndon beyond Tyler Kroft, they should look for a tight end who can contribute to the box score.

Morris, a three-year starter who also worked as was a bright spot for an otherwise dismal BGSU program, earning first-team All-MAC honors in the Falcons’ shortened season. In the last two full seasons, Morris earned 11 touchdown passes, including seven during a turbulent sophomore season in 2018 (which saw an in-season coaching change). Morris’ propensity for scoring could help him develop a niche as a goal-line option, which the Jets could sorely use after ranking dead last in the league by scoring touchdowns on 42 percent of their red zone possessions.

RB: Jaret Patterson, Buffalo

Whether it’s through standard MACtion or downright historic efforts, even casual college football fans are aware of Patterson’s efforts in Western New York. A 409-yard, eight-touchdown tally in November against Kent State officially put him on the map, part of a stellar, shortened season (1,072 rushing yards, 19 touchdowns in six games).

Thanks to the signing of Tevin Coleman and a group of young projects, the Jets can probably wait until the latter stages of the draft to address their running back situation. Patterson could be a solid find through his strong build (195 lbs.) that makes up for his height (5’6). As a bit of a hesitator with strong speed, Patterson could become what Le’Veon Bell was supposed to be if he were to join the Jets.

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags 

Mets Game Preview: (4/27/21) vs. Boston Red Sox (14-9)

After getting Monday off, the New York Mets return to action at Citi Field against the Boston Red Sox. They play the first of two against a Red Sox team that has shocked many throughout baseball to begin the season. The first pitch is scheduled for 7:10 p.m. ET from Queens.

The Mets offense had its ups and downs during their series win against the Washington Nationals. They went from sinking to the bottom of the ocean to treading water enough that they could survive. J.D. Davis and Brandon Nimmo have continued to lead this offense, but it is slowly starting to get more help. Pete Alonso was 4-for-8 with three walks and a home run after he homered twice in Chicago. It is evident that Alonso is becoming more comfortable at the plate and starting to get into a groove.

Exceeding Expectations

The Red Sox are one of the true underdog stories in the American League. They join the Kansas City Royals and Oakland A’s as teams no one expected to hold first place at the end of April. Their offense leads MLB with 213 hits, 54 Doubles, a .276 batting average, and a .455 slugging percentage. All of that equals the Sox being second in runs scored in baseball. Combine all of that with average pitching, and you have their formula for success.

The big three of J.D. Martinez, Xander Bogaerts, and Alex Verdugo are the key parts of their offense. All are in the top-3 in the team’s offensive categories, and Martinez is tied for the AL lead with seven home runs. Since joining the Red Sox in 2018, Martinez has only played 104 games in the outfield due to his poor defensive ability. Despite the defensive shortcomings, it is hard to keep a bat as hot as Martinez’s on the bench.

Pitching Matchup

David Peterson gets the start against the team he made his MLB debut against. Peterson started strong in his last start against the Chicago Cubs but failed to get out of the fourth inning. He allowed six runs (three earned) on four hits and two walks in just 3.1 innings pitched.

Garrett Richards makes his fifth start of the season but has failed to give the Red Sox length in his first four outings. He has not pitched longer than five innings, and his inability to throw strikes is why. Richards has allowed 13 walks in 16.2 innings and has thrown just 58% of his pitches for strikes. In his last start, he threw 92 pitches, and only 48 were strikes. The Mets have the fourth-best on-base percentage in MLB, which should be a good matchup for them.

Matchups To Lookout For

Garrett Richards vs. Francisco Lindor: 1-for-8 (.125), Walk, 5 Strikeouts

David Peterson vs. Kevin Plawecki: 2-for-2 (1.000), Double

David Peterson vs. J.D. Martinez: 0-for-3 (.000), 2 Strikeouts

New York Yankees: Why is the powerful Yankees lineup impotent

New York Yankees, Gary Sanchez

The New York Yankees lineup is one of the most powerful lineups in baseball, yet a lack of hitting that has dogged them since the beginning of the season has found them at the bottom of the American League East. This is not to say that the Yankee pitching has been stellar because it hasn’t been. But this is not the biggest problem facing the Yankees. It’s that the team-wide hitting has been impotent. And it’s no just one or two hitters; it’s pretty much across the board and all at the same time. Even last year’s batting champ DJ LeMahieu isn’t up to par. Let’s look at each player in the lineup and how they are or aren’t performing.

This listing is for players that have played in 12 or more games.

DJ LeMahieu:

Last year’s batting champion has one of the better batting averages (.250) on the team but is not performing as he has in the past two seasons. Over the offseason, he signed a six-year deal that will take him all the way to his retirement from the game. This season he has been hitting the ball, but the results aren’t there; he has hit into an inordinate number of double plays.

Aaron Judge:

Slugger Aaron Judge started the season pretty well, but since then has gone stone cold. In his last ten games, he has hit only 2 home runs and has been striking out much more than the first ten games when he often walked. It was said that if the New York Yankees could keep both Judge and Stanton on the field, there would be no stopping them. So far, with both healthy, that hasn’t been the case.

Giancarlo Stanton:

Giancarlo Stanton, I guess you could call him the most successful Yankee hitter, hitting the most home runs (5) and the most RBI’s (14), but his .192 batting average is miserable. He has been lucky enough to hit home runs with men on base, but his contact hitting isn’t there. He does seem to be one of the most energized at the plate.

Aaron Hicks:

Aaron Hicks has been awful, one of the worst Yankee players at the plate. He is hitting .162 and is usually in the crucial number 3 slot in the lineup. That’s a decision that has been criticized since the beginning of the season, but the analytics say he should be there, and even though it hasn’t worked out, manager Boone for the most part, seems to be sticking with it. Hicks has 3 homers on the season, but just one extra-base hit. He is number 3 on the team for strikeouts (20).

Gleyber Torres:

After a poor showing in the 2020 season and not being ready to play, Torres is in much better shape, but there have been no results. He is batting .208 with no home runs, only two extra-base hits, and only two runs driven in. He has more strikeouts than hits.

Gio Urshela:

Gio Urshela, in a season with few bright spots he has shown brighter than most. His batting average is .264, which is the highest batting average of everyday players. He has the second-highest number of hits with 4 extra-base hits and 10 runs driving in. He, unlike many, has better situation hitting, avoiding hitting into double plays. He also has 3 homers on the season.

Gary Sanchez:

Gary Sanchez, although starting well, with each game, his batting average keeps reducing. He is hitting .182 with only 2 home runs, and those were in both of his first two games. He has now gone 20 games without a home run while striking out 15 times with only 1 extra-base hit on the season. His backup catcher Kyle Higashioka is superior behind the plate and in front of it. He has the most home runs per game played and has the highest batting average.

Clint Frazier:

Clint Frazier, besides some spectacular plays in the field as been disappointing behind the plate, to say the least. He is batting only .142; only MIke Ford has a lower batting average. He looks ready at the plate, but his timing isn’t there yet. He has yet to hit a home run this season.

Brett Gardner:

Brett Gardner, although a bench player, has played in 13 of the New York Yankees 22 games. He started the season hot. At one time, he led the team in batting. But he, too, has gone cold, hitting just .194, with no home runs.

Rougned Odor:

Rougie Odor is a recent addition to the team and has been getting some playing time (13 games). He has a batting average of just .159, but his situational hitting has been among the best on the team. Since he has been a Yankee, the Yankees have won 7 games, he was the deciding run in three of the wins. In 13 games, he has 3 home runs. He also seems to be a catalyst playing with significant energy.

Why and how to fix it

The why and how to fix it is far above my grade. But, Aaron Boone and the coaches better figure it out sooner than later. The team needs to start playing with energy and determination. There is still plenty of time to turn it around, but that time is quickly running out. Let’s go New York Yankees!!