New York Yankees Recap: Andrew Heaney sweeps the Red Sox

andrew heaney, yankees

Tonight after sweeping the doubleheader yesterday, the New York Yankees took on the Boston Red Sox with the hope of sweeping the series and going even further ahead of the Sox. They were even in the AL East at five games back in the AL East at the beginning of the game. Andrew Heaney faced Nick Pivetta. The Yankees got the 5-2 win and took over the first wild card slot.

In the first inning, Kiki Hernandez flew out to Judge in right for the first out of the game. Hunter Renfroe tapped out to first. Xander Bogaerts hit an opposite-field home run to put the Red Sox up one. Rafael Devers struck out to end the half. DJ LeMahieu went down, looking at the bottom. In his first night back after being on the Covid list, Anthony Rizzo flew out to left-center. Aaron Judge walked. Joey Gallo flew out to left. Boston Red Sox 1 Yankees 0.

The second inning was led off by JT Martinez, who struck out on a foul tip. Then, Keven Palwecki flew out to Judge in right. Finally, Alex Verdugo popped out to short to end the half for a 1-2-3 inning for Heaney.

At the bottom, Giancarlo Stanton led off by hitting a base hit to left field. Rougie Odor walked. Gary Sanchez singled to right, Stanton moved to third, but Odor was called out at second. On review, Odor was safe. Brett Gardner, with the bases loaded and no outs, got a sac fly scoring Stanton. Andrew Velazquez got an RBI single-scoring Odor. Velazquez stole second. LeMahieu lined out to third. Anthony Rizzo singled beyond first, driving in two runs. Judge walked, knocking Pivetta out of the game. Gallo faced the new Sox pitcher Garrett Richards and ground out to second to end the inning, but the Yankees picked up four runs in the inning. New York Yankees 4 Red Sox 1.

The third inning was led off by Bobby Dalbec, who flew out to Judge in right. Christian Vazquez ground out to third. Hernandez struck out to end the half. Stanton, at the bottom, walked. Odor went down on strikes. Sanchez went down swinging. Gardner ground out to second to end the inning. Yankees 4 Sox 1.

Hunter Renfroe led off the fourth by walking. Bogaerts hit into a force out at second. Bogaerts went to second on a wild pitch. Devers ground out with Bogaerts going to third. Martinez ground out to Odor. At the bottom of the inning, it was Velazquez at the plate; he struck out. LeMahieu flew out. Rizzo struck out. Yankees 4 Sox 1.

Kevin Palwecki led off the fifth with a single to left field. Verdugo popped out to Gallo in left. Dalbec was robbed for hit by a jumping LeMahieu. Vazquez popped out to the infield for the final out. Judge led off the bottom by grounding out to first. Gallo struck out, and Stanton gave it a ride but out in the far center. Yankees 4 Sox 1.

The sixth was led off by Hernandez, who walked. Renfroe flew out to right. Bogaerts hit into a double play to end the half. At the bottom, Odor led off by grounding out to first. Sanchez flew out to center. Gardner faced the new Sox pitcher Martin Perez and got an infield single. With two outs and one on, Velazquez went down looking for the final out of the inning. New York Yankees 4 and the Red Sox 1.

Rafael Devers led off the seventh inning and struck out. Martinez flew out to Gallo in left. Kevin Palwecki flew out to center. At the bottom against new Red Sox pitcher, Adam Ottavino ground out in the infield. Rizzo flew out to second. Judge walked. Judge stole second without a throw. Gallo was walked intentionally. Stanton, with two on and two outs, ground out to third, got end another scoreless inning.

At the eight with Zack Britton on the mound, Verdugo struck out looking. Verdugo ground out to short. Vazquez ground out to second. At the bottom, Odor flew out to shallow center. Sanchez got a stand-up double to center. Gardner ground out to first, with Sanchez going to third. Velazquez singled to left with Sanchez scoring. LeMahieu ground out to second to end the inning. New York Yankees 5 Red Sox 1.

The top of the ninth saw the return from the Covid list of closer Aroldis Chapman. Hernandez went down on strikes. Renfroe homered to the left-field stands. Bogaerts walked. Devers ground out directly to Rizzo at first, Bogaerts moved to second. Martinez singled to center, moving Bogaerts to third, and that was it for Chapman. Lucas Luetge trying to nail down his first save in nine years, came in to face Palwecki, who ground out to Velazquez, who fired to Rizzo for the last out that was upheld by review. Yankees swept the Red Sox.

The final score was the New York Yankees 5 and the Red Sox 2. The winning pitcher was Andrew Heaney, and the loser was Nick Pivetta, with Lucas Luetge getting his first save in nine years.

 

 

 

 

 

New York Liberty: 3 stars from Wednesday’s win vs. Seattle

The Bank of New York was open late on Wednesday night, as Betnijah Laney’s jumper won it for the New York Liberty.

Betnijah Laney cashed a valuable check at the Bank of New York on Wednesday night.

The 2021 WNBA All-Star’s fourth quarter jumper banked home with 17.6 seconds left, breaking the New York Liberty’s tie with the defending champion Seattle Storm. It was the last of Laney’s 17 team-high points on the night, an honor she shared with Bec Allen off the bench, and the Liberty earned an 83-79 victory at Barclays Center. The Liberty (11-12) overcame a diamond performance from Seattle Jewell Loyd, who tallied a career-best 35 points over the first three quarters. Wednesday was a comeback effort for the Liberty, who trailed by as many as 15 and wiped out a 10-point lead entering the fourth quarter.

New York and Seattle (16-7) will meet again in Brooklyn on Friday night (7 p.m. ET, YES).

ESM has three game balls to bestow from a crucial win for the Liberty…

Allen struggled in her first go-around since coming back from representing Australia in the Tokyo Olympics but showed off an electrifying souvenir on Wednesday. Leading the way off the bench for an eight-woman rotation for New York, Allen sank three huge triples in the fourth carter, breaking double figures for the first time since June 20. Allen shot 5-of-9 from the field, including 5-of-6 from a Land Down Under alone…OK, they weren’t that far, but they still paved the for the Liberty’s win.

3rd Star: Bec Allen

17 points, 6 rebounds

2nd Star: Betnijah Laney

17 points, 8 assists, 7 rebounds

Laney didn’t reach her customary 20 points but emerged with something far more valuable: a win. The Liberty’s All-Star was a woman of many talents on Wednesday night, falling respectfully short of a triple-double. If the Liberty are able to clinch a playoff spot…and, perhaps more importantly, host their first playoff game since 2017…Laney’s shot will go down as one of the symbolic turning points in the team’s ongoing “hybrid rebuild”. The win loses a quantum of luster knowing that league legends Sue Bird and Breanna Stewart didn’t play, but a win over the defending champs in spite of one of the better shooters having a career night…all while the team’s face of the future provides the heroics…could be long remembered in Liberty land.

1st Star: DiDi Richards

9 points, 2 assists

Richards’ numbers were relatively pedestrian but Wednesday set the stage for an incredible showcase. Having been held scoreless since June 24, the Liberty’s second-round pick sank all three of her attempts to set an infantile career-high. Richards, known for her defense at Baylor, also came huge on the other end, holding Loyd scoreless over the final ten minutes. Her most notable contributions to the team, the endless energy seen through her infectious smile and unrelenting tenacity, will probably never be measured by any box score metric. But Richards’ activities…diving for loose balls, attacking the paint, and a new sense of fearless shooting…could help make her case to stick around for the Liberty’s long run.

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags

Mets Pull Off Extra Inning Heroics In 6-2 Win Over Giants

The final game between the New York Mets and San Francisco Giants shaped up like the first two, but the offense got tired of the lack of production. The Mets came back to tie the game in the ninth, survived the tenth and 11th innings, then put the game away once the 12th inning came around.

In the ninth inning, the Mets were in a situation that was all too familiar to them. After the Giants closer, Jake McGee hit Pete Alonso with a pitch and allowed a Michael Conforto single to set up a first and third situation. Alonso ended up leaving the game after getting hit in the elbow but is day-to-day. J.D. Davis ended up tying the game with a sacrifice fly to keep the Mets’ hopes alive. Edwin Diaz followed by delivering scoreless ninth and tenth innings.

In the eleventh inning, Conforto delivered again with an RBI double which gave the Mets a 2-1 lead and turned the bottom of the inning to Jeurys Familia. He instantly allowed a game-tying single to Tommy La Stella but managed to escape and get the game to the 12th. Throughout all this commotion, the Giants were out of position players and down to their last reliever. Starter Anthony DeSclafani left after 1.1 innings pitched with an ankle injury which put manager Gabe Kapler in an early pinch.

Survival of the Fittest

Tyler Chatwood was the last reliever left and was in his second inning of work. He struck out Jonathan Villar to start the inning after Villar missed a double by a foot. Patrick Mazeika‘s infield single set up Kevin Pillar‘s three-run home run, which gave the Mets the huge hit they have been searching for. Chance Sisco made his debut and finished off the inning with an RBI double to finish off the inning.

Jake Reed got the opportunity to close the game and was flawless. He struck out two and retired the side in order to secure the win and get the Mets back to the 500 mark. The win showed the importance of Marcus Stroman‘s start the previous night. It gave the bullpen the rest it needed, and every pitcher except Aaron Loup had at least one day of rest.  Tylor Megill also did his job by holding the Giants to just one run over six strong innings.

Tommy Lasorda once said, “No matter how good you are, you’re going to lose one-third of your games. No matter how bad you are, you’re going to win one-third of your games. It’s the other third that makes the difference.” This fits perfectly for the 60-60 Mets who have an opportunity to resurrect their season still, but it will not come easy. The Los Angeles Dodgers are up next for a four-game series with Taijuan Walker throwing game one, starting at 10:10 p.m. ET from Dodger Stadium.

New York Giants: RB Alfred Morris among latest roster cuts

alfred morris, new york giants

The New York Giants will have to continue to trim their roster as they head through the preseason and towards September, and veteran running back Alfred Morris is the most notable player to not make it out of the cut down to 85 players. Morris was one of the players the Giants moved on from during their last set of roster moves to bring their numbers down to the limit, and was released alongside defensive back Chris Milton.

Morris was on the roster since last September but was back and forth between the practice squad and the regular roster. He was one of the players brought in to help after Saquon Barkley’s injury, but didn’t have much in the way of expectations placed on him as he started out on the practice squad and wasn’t placed on the active roster until November.

When Morris did get time on the field, he finished the season with a respectable stat line of 238 yards and one rushing touchdown as well as a receiving touchdown – it earned him a new deal with the Giants at the beginning of August but that ultimately didn’t last very long as Morris was released this week by the team.

The decision likely has to do with the depth the Giants have at the position from other players. They brought on multiple running backs this offseason to support Saquon Barkley in his return, with the primary backup likely being Devontae Booker. Aside from Booker, the Giants drafted Gary Brightwell and brought in Corey Clement as a free agent.

With Barkley returning this season also, the Giants have plenty of depth at the position already and the 32 year old Morris just didn’t fit on the roster. It’s not entirely out of the question for the Giants to sign Morris again to the practice squad later on if he doesn’t find another team at his current age, but for now, the team will continue to focus on new faces as the options behind Barkley.

Knicks: Obi Toppin soars high in Vegas with NBA All-Summer League First Team selection

obi toppin, knicks

Obi Toppin made great strides in Las Vegas and it didn’t go unnoticed.

On Wednesday, the NBA named Toppin to the All-Summer League First Team.

The New York Knicks‘ sophomore forward led the tournament in playing time (35.1 minutes per game) — a thing that he didn’t enjoy during his rookie year as he played sporadically behind Knicks’ All-Star forward Julius Randle. The Knicks basically slot in Toppin to Randle’s usage rate in the regular season in the Summer League. Randle led the entire league in minutes (37.6) last season.

“Obi put in a lot of time over the summer. And it showed,” Knicks Summer League coach Daisuke “Dice” Yoshimoto said earlier in the tournament. “He’s gonna continue to get better, put time in, and the result will gonna take care of itself. This is his chance to showcase who he is. He’s gonna continue to put his time in, work hard, and build the right habits.”

The 23-year old Toppin grabbed the opportunity to show who he is leading the Knicks to a 4-2 record.

Toppin flourished with an expanded role as a rim runner, roll man, and pick and pop big man. He led the team in scoring (21.0) and rebounding (8.3) while hitting two threes on 34 percent shooting. He added 1.3 assists and 1.3 steals.

Toppin joined fellow sophomores Payton Pritchard (Boston), Jalen Smith (Phoenix) in the First Team. Rookies Trey Murphy III (New Orleans), Jalen Johnson (Atlanta), co-MVPs Davion Mitchell (Sacramento), and Cam Thomas (Brooklyn) rounded up the selection.

Ties in voting totals by the media panel between Mitchell and Pritchard (backcourt) and between Johnson, Smith, and Murphy III (frontcourt) resulted in two additional players selected (one backcourt, one frontcourt).

Meanwhile, the All-Summer League Second Team consists of this year’s top two picks Cade Cunningham (Detroit) and Jalen Green (Houston), alongside Detroit’s two-way rookie Luka Garza, last season’s G League MVP Paul Reed (Philadelphia), and sophomore Patrick Williams (Chicago).

Follow this writer on Twitter: @alderalmo

New York Jets OL Alex Lewis announces retirement (Report)

jets, alex lewis

Lewis, a fourth-round pick in Baltimore, was one of Joe Douglas’ first acquisitions of the Joe Douglas era.

Per ESPN’s Rich Cimini, New York Jets offensive lineman Alex Lewis has retired. Lewis had partaken in 24 Jets games, starting 21, over the last two seasons.

A fourth-round pick from the 2016 draft, Lewis was one of Jets general manager Joe Douglas’ first acquisitions. He came over from Baltimore in exchange for a seventh-round choice (that the Ravens eventually dealt to Minnesota) in August 2019. Lewis took over the starting left guard role after Kelechi Osemele’s departure and started the latter dozen games of the Jets’ 2019 campaign. His efforts were rewarded with a three-year, $18.6 million contract extension.

Lewis endured a tumultuous sophomore year in green, missing the final games of the year on the non-football injury list. Rumors of conflict with then-head coach Adam Gase emerged but were denied by Lewis himself. Cimini’s report states, however, that Lewis was displeased with the drafting of offensive lineman Alijah Vera-Tucker in April. The Jets had traded up with Minnesota to select the interior blocker from USC. Lewis skipped offseason workouts but later agreed to a restructured contract. The new deal dropped his 2021 base salary by nearly $3 million, though he would be allowed to pursue free agency after the 2021 season.

The Jets placed Lewis on the exempt/left squad list a day after suffered a head injury in training camp on August 5. Such a designation precluded him from playing with any team this season. At the time, Jets head coach Robert Saleh said that Lewis was “going through some things which are much greater than football right now”, per notes from the team.

New York returns to preseason action on Saturday later afternoon against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field (4:25 p.m. ET, WLNY/NFL Network).

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags 

UFC: Nate Diaz says he’s fighting in December

It appears that one of the most popular fighters in the UFC has his next date. Nate Diaz (20-13) took to Instagram today and announced that he would be, “Defending in December” insinuating that he will be returning to the octagon at the end of the year.

The last time we saw Diaz was at UFC 263 when he took on Leon Edwards (19-3, 1 NC). While Diaz has spent the majority of his career at lightweight, he’s fought his last five fights at 170 pounds.

Diaz has been more interested in fighting who’s considered to be the best than anything else. The UFC was struggling to get Leon Edwards a fight earlier this year. Given his talent and his winning streak, Diaz told the UFC he wanted to fight him.

The two met back in June. While Edwards controlled virtually the entire fight, the world was buzzing over the final minute. Diaz landed a flush 1-2 to the chin of Edwards and rocked him badly. Had that moment happened earlier in the round, Diaz might’ve finished Edwards.

However, Edwards survived and got the decision win. While Diaz is just 1-3 in his last four fights, his star power continues to grow. With him returning in December, it’ll be interesting to see who the UFC pairs him with.

Who will the UFC have Diaz fight?

In recent weeks, Diaz has really targeted Dustin Poirier (28-6, 1 NC). Poirier and Diaz were supposed to fight a couple of years ago, but the fight fell apart before the UFC could get things finalized.

Pretty much since January, Diaz has been calling for a fight with Poirier. While it’s expected that Poirier will be fighting for the UFC lightweight title next, he said on Monday that he wasn’t ruling out a potential fight with Diaz. 

Another possiblity could be Jorge Masvidal (35-15). Gamebred and Diaz fought back at UFC 244 for the BMF title. Masvidal controlled the fight, but Diaz was coming on strong in the middle rounds. However, a doctor called a stop to the fight due to a cut over Diaz’s eye.

While Masvidal was clearly winning, it did leave a sour taste in everyone’s mouth. The UFC was originally looking to run that fight back last year, however, they ultimately scrapped that plan. With Masvidal coming off the loss to Kamaru Usman, perhaps the promotion is ready to have the BMF rematch.

Yankees: Luis Gil is pushing for a place in the rotation

yankees, luis gil

New York Yankees’ rookie Luis Gil is making a strong push for a rotation spot, even though the unit is full at the moment after getting back perhaps their two best pitchers this week from the COVID-19 list: Gerrit Cole and Jordan Montgomery.

Jameson Taillon is pitching admirably (3.89 ERA in 118 innings), and so is Nestor Cortes Jr. (2.55 ERA in 49.1 innings). Andrew Heaney has been battered, yes, (9.00 ERA in three starts for the Yankees, 5.78 for the season), but he was recently acquired and is also in the picture for a rotation spot.

Yet Gil has made a fantastic impression in his first three Major League starts with the Yankees. In 15.2 innings, the righty fireballer, who has a high-spin fastball that can reach the upper-90s, hasn’t allowed any earned runs so far, with seven walks and 18 strikeouts.

He gave the Yankees another 4 2/3 scoreless innings

Although he had four walks in his last start against the Red Sox on Tuesday, Gil kept them in check for 4 2/3 inning.

“A lot of adrenaline,” the Yankees rookie told NJ Advance Media via the team’s Spanish interpreter. “I was very excited to face Boston and they have a really good lineup. You understand that you cannot make mistakes.”

The Yankees’ fourth-best prospect according to Baseball America, Gil is really making things difficult for manager Aaron Boone, especially considering that Corey Kluber and Domingo German could eventually be back and there is a small chance Luis Severino pitches this season, too.

“Had some walks out there, but that’s a big game out there,” Boone said. “Red Sox-Yankees in August, playing for a lot. I thought he was unflappable. He really locked in, concentrated on making his pitches and, look, when he’s in the strike zone, he’s difficult to hit. He’s got the stuff to get really good teams out. He made some big pitches tonight when he had to, gave us a really strong outing and put us in position to win another game.”

 

The Yankees appear to be increasing their pitching depth at the most opportunistic time.

Julius Randle is excited to play with new Knicks dynamic backcourt

Opposing teams will now be wary of loading up on New York Knicks‘ All-Star Julius Randle next season with the arrival of the four-time All-Star point guard Kemba Walker and Frenchman shooter Evan Fournier.

Walker and Fournier, formally introduced as the newest Knicks Tuesday, are viewed as much-needed offensive upgrades to Elfrid Payton and Reggie Bullock.

“We’re going to be really good,” Walker said. “My ability to get in the lane. Hopefully, I can draw multiple defenders and just get rid of the basketball. Trusting my teammates. I know this guy [Evan] right here is going to light it up. For sure he’s going to shoot the crap out of the ball. We got a bunch of young guys who we just drafted who are really, really good, who I’ve been really impressed with watching summer league. And some of the other guys who have been here, the guys from last season. Me and Evan plan on coming here, bringing some leadership and just adding on to what they already got going.”

The Knicks’ new backcourt is expected to complement and space the floor for Randle, RJ Barrett, and Mitchell Robinson in the starting unit.

It was a solid offseason for the Knicks as they were able to upgrade and still maintain their bench depth with the re-signing of veterans Derrick Rose, Alec Burks, Nerlens Noel, and Taj Gibson, who all played vital roles in their surprising playoff run last season. Then there’s the pair of Immanuel Quickley and Obi Toppin, looking to improve on their sophomore year. Their rookies — Quentin Grimes, Miles McBride, and Jericho Sims — have shown plenty of promise in the NBA Summer League that they could be rotational players in their first year.

Their suddenly new-found depth is a welcome problem for two-time NBA Coach of the Year Tom Thibodeau.

Randle, whom the Knicks locked up for four more years via a $117-million extension, remains the key cog of the team. All the Knicks’ offseason moves were geared toward easing up the heavy load he carried last season as their offense went down with him when the Atlanta Hawks zeroed in on him in the playoffs.

“We brought back some key guys but you know, Leon (Rose) and Wes (William) and Scott (Perry), the guys did a great job of just making us a more versatile team, putting more shooting on the floor and guys that can create and get down shots as well. I’m just excited,” Randle said on The Jump, a few hours after the team’s introductory press conference for his new teammates, Walker and Fournier.

“It seems like these guys — just by talking to them, playing against them — will fit into our culture and will work out really well. So, that’s obviously a plus. I just think [the offseason moves] just make us a lot more dynamic.”

The Knicks’ offense will be more dynamic with Fournier, a better shot creator than Bullock, and Walker, who is miles ahead, a better playmaker and shotmaker than Payton.

It will also help that Walker and Fournier are coming in with an already established chemistry, having played together in the second half of last season with the Boston Celtics. What makes their addition more promising is their willingness to embrace reduced roles in Boston, which they are willing to do again in New York, judging from their introductory presser.

“It’s going to be fine,” Walker said. “Me and Evan, we are two very, very unselfish guys. We’re just going to get the ball moving and find the right shot, play some defense, try to get some stops. I think we’re going to jell super well. I’m super easy to get along with. So is Evan. So it’s going to be fine.”

Randle couldn’t be more pleased when he heard Walker talk about unselfishness. That trait has what pushed the less-heralded Knicks team to overachieve last season.

“Yeah, absolutely! I’m right there with him,” he told The Jump after listening to Walker’s interview. “I think that was the important thing about our team last year was everybody was unselfish. At the end of the day, all it matter was our team was winning. And just that mentality right there says it all. Those guys are, obviously, great players. They’re gonna bring a lot to the table for our team. But at the end of the day, everything is about winning. And I feel like that’s their mindset so it’s gonna be fun.”

Fournier has built a reputation as one of the most hardworking players in the league, so much so that his cerebral approach to the game has been underrated. The newly-minted Olympic silver medalist has a methodical approach to building chemistry with his new team.

“Well, first of all, I think we need to learn each other,” Fournier said. “What guys do best, what they enjoy, where they are efficient on the court, and then after that, it’s just playing free. Drive and kick, just making the right play, moving the ball, playing good basketball. It sounds simple, but at the end of the day you just have to be willing to do it.”

The willingness and togetherness of the Knicks team, last season under defensive guru Thibodeau, were the biggest draws for Fournier to choose New York. It was the cherry on top of his long desire to play at his favorite arena, the Madison Square Garden, in front of the loudest fans in the NBA for 41 games every year.

“I’m like that, too! I play for coach Steve Clifford for three years. In a lot of ways, [he and Thibodeau] are very similar. I know I will gonna enjoy working for him. And it’s New York, it’s the Madison [Suqare Garden]. The team is getting better and better. It was just a great opportunity. You probably don’t know that but the French press knows, I’ve been saying for years that I’ve always wanted to play for the Knicks. Now, it became a reality,” Fournier said.

The dream offseason, relative to what the dry free-agent market offered, is now officially over. The reality now sets in for the Knicks.

“We have a lot of work to do,” Randle said. “I don’t want to judge anything until we get on the court. But I have all the faith and confidence that Thibs — I know he’ll put us into the best position on the floor and bring out the best in us as a team. We’ll be fine.”

Fine will be an understatement if everything clicks for the Knicks.

Follow this writer on Twitter: @alderalmo

Yankees’ Luke Voit warns ‘I’m not going down’ as he helps propels team past Boston

New York Yankees, Luke Voit

The Yankees acquired Luke Voit from the Cardinals back in 2018. He instantly made an impact and quickly turned into a fan favorite. That hasn’t stopped. Ever since wearing the Yankee uniform, Voit has done nothing but produce. The only problem Voit’s faced has been staying on the field.

In 2019, he missed 44 games. In 2020, he only missed four games and led the league in home runs. However, so far in 2021, Voit has only appeared in 39 games. He missed the first few months and then went back to the IL shortly after returning. It’s been frustrating for both Voit and the Yankees. Considering the Yankees weren’t playing good baseball, Brian Cashman decided to make some big moves at the deadline. 

Cashman went out and acquired two big lefty bats. One of them being the first baseman Anthony Rizzo. Rizzo is a silver slugger and platinum glove that provides balance to a majority right-handed lineup. He was clearly going to be the starter going forward. He made an instant impact and seemed to be what the Yankees needed. However, just as he was getting comfortable, he contracted COVID-19 and was shut down for two weeks. 

Luke Voit was rehabbing for a return at the time and was able to step up right away. Since his return, he’s playing very well and has provided some big hits for the Yankees. With Stanton getting time in the outfield, Voit could take over the DH spot when Rizzo returns. 

After the win yesterday, Voit shared his thoughts on his situation with the team. Voit said that he’s been a “great player for the organization for the last three years.” Saying he was “top ten” in MVP voting last year and that he “deserves” to play. Voit finished saying that he understands it’s going to be “tougher with Rizzo” but that he is “not going down like that.” 

Fans were going crazy after these quotes from Voit. Personally, I love it. Voit obviously has nothing against Rizzo, he just simply wants to play. To me, that’s exactly what you want in the clubhouse. You want players willing to compete for time, not players giving up once their spot is taken. Voit playing with something to prove will help this team down the stretch. This situation is nothing more than players wanting to win.

Anthony Rizzo might return to the Yankees tonight. Whether it’s Rizzo at DH or at first base, it’s a huge boost for this team. It’ll be interesting to see how Boone constructs the lineup with both Voit and Rizzo ready to play.