With the New York Yankees making several offseason moves to bolster their roster, some of their current talents are primed for big years in 2019. Miguel Andujar is no exception, coming off a 2018 season that saw him finish second in AL Rookie of the Year voting to Angels two-way star Shohei Ohtani. While his defense is the primary concern, he will look to again help lead a dangerous Yankee offense to the postseason.
2018 Stats (New York Yankees):
149 Games, .297/.328/.527/.855, 27 HR, 92 RBI, 25 BB, 97 SO, 83 Runs Scored, 2.2 WAR
Whether or not he won ROY, Andujar had an excellent rookie year. For one, he surpassed Joe DiMaggio for most doubles by a rookie in franchise history (47). His 27 home runs also helped the Yankees break the single-season home run record and win 100 games. It was only good enough for a wild card spot before the Yankees were defeated in the ALDS by the Red Sox.
While his bat helped carry the team for most of the season, his defense is a continuous concern. He committed 15 errors at third base, tied for fourth worst in baseball in 2018. A positive is that he spent much of the winter working to improve his footwork among other things. One person who worked with the young Andujar was Adrian Beltre, who had similar problems early in his career.
Only time will tell if Andujar’s defense can improve, or if he’s destined for a role as a DH. Also, forget the idea of him having a “sophomore slump” in 2019. Don’t be surprised if his sophomore year is one of massive improvement, both offensively and defensively.