By now, the 2020 struggles of New York Yankees‘ catcher Gary Sanchez are well-publicized. He slumped to a career-worst .147 batting average and a 69 wRC+, with a 36 percent strikeout rate. He did hit 10 home runs, but was bad to the point that he was benched in favor of Kyle Higashioka. It’s all in the past now: Sanchez seems to have the confidence of the organization as he looks to turn things around in 2021.
With less than one month away from spring training, Sanchez knows that everybody will be watching him. He’s talented enough to mash in 2021 and regain his form, though.
When all was said and done, the New York Yankees opted to tender him a contract, appropriately so. Last week, he agreed to play for $6.35 million in 2021, to avoid salary arbitration.
Yankees’ Sanchez shouldn’t “worry about what people say”
As it turns out, former Yankees’ outfielder and World Series champion Nick Swisher had some words of advice for Sanchez, as he is set to enter a crucial season.
Swisher spoke at WFANâ€™s Moose & Maggie on Monday.
“My advice: donâ€™t listen to anything, donâ€™t read anything, just get back to being Gary Sanchez. Donâ€™t worry about what people say, just continue to stick to the grind and the process, because if you do, the results will come. When you play in New York, youâ€™re under a microscope, no doubt, and if you donâ€™t put up the numbers, people will be all over you. But Gary hit what, 33 homers his rookie year? He has it inside him, but look at all he has gone through â€“ heâ€™s had a bunch of different catching coaches and tried a lot of different things, but he has been doing everything he can to be the best catcher he can be. Once he gets that bat back to where he knows it can be, no one has a problem,” he said.
Swisher won the 2009 World Series as a member of the Yankees. He appeared for the first time on this year’s Hall of Fame ballot.