The New York Yankees are sure to have an exciting season with the acquisition of Gerrit Cole. The Yankees without him are one of the three strongest teams in the major leagues. So what does the 2020 season look like for the Bronx Bombers? DJ LeMahieu will play excellent defense at any position the Yankees want to put him. His natural position is at second base, where he won a Silver Slugger Award this past season. But because of his versatility, he can man 1st and 3rd with equal expertise. There is little doubt that his timely hitting will be diminished, and the Yankees will get another excellent season from the veteran.
The Yankees 2020 outfield looks questionable, but at the same time, is in excellent shape, with a multitude of players that can man center and left field. This brings me to two players that I believe will have career seasons in 2020.
The first is Aaron Judge. I believe if Judge can remain healthy this coming year, he will match if not better his 2017 season. As he hones his skills, even more, he will be a Gold Glover in right field. As he comes into his prime, he will win the Yankee home run title with somewhere between the 40-60 home run range, with over 100 RBI’s. He has learned his low strike zone, compared to his massive body, and will be making adjustments based on how umpires call balls and strikes on him.
Judge was bummed out when the Yankees did not advance beyond the ALCS, calling the season a failure, and will do everything in his power to get a chance at a World Series win.
Just like last year’s stand out, Gio Urshela blasted onto the scene, so this year will Mike Tauchman, who will come into his own as a regular player. Tauchman did an excellent job last year in his trips between Scranton Wilkes/Barre and the Stadium. He hit .277 in just 87 games.
His defense in left field was nothing short of excellent. As he has more consistent at-bats, look to him to become more contact and consistent behind the plate. With his increased at-bats last season, he slugged .504. He likes New York, and at 29, he wants to make his mark.
I wouldn’t expect Brett Gardner to repeat his 2019 season, but being at the heart of the team, he will be re-energized with the addition of Cole to the team, and another chance for a World Series ring, which would be his second with the team, being the longest-tenured Yankee. He will have a solid season.
Gio Urshela made his mark last year, and there is no reason to assume anything will change with his defense. With his .314 batting average last season, in 2020, as a substantial part of the team, he will impress again this year. Luke Voit was developing into an excellent Yankee player with some power before injuries set him back.
Last year in his shortened season, Voit hit a home run every six games. Based on a full season projected at 150 games, he would hit over 25 this coming season, making him a big producer further down in the batting order.
Gleyber Torres hit 38 home runs, leading the Yankees, and hit at a .278 rate. He is still developing and will only improve. The Yankee lineup is arguably one of the most powerful, if Miguel Andujar is not traded, his inclusion in the lineup would put it over the top.Â This is a batting order that will not give opposing pitchers any relief.
There is no reason to believe that Gerrit Cole will not have a similar season to last year. He will get 15 or more wins and will continue to be a strikeout king. With Cole leading the rotation, the pressure will be off the other starters and will allow them to pitch without the urgency they were under this year.
No matter if you look at the pitchers or the position players, what makes the Yankees the most dangerous team in 2020, even if there are injuries, is the Yankees depth. There are many unknowns between now and starting day on March 26th. The one thing we do know is that the Yankees will be at the top of their game.