The best catcher in Major League Baseball has only batted .108 in the month of July. New York Yankees gunslinger Gary Sanchez has gone 4-37 through the midway point of July. In Sanchez’s last 11 games he only has four hits (two being XBH) while fanning 17 times.
To give a perspective, last month at this time Sanchez had 12 hits and only fanned 11 times. Talks of a possible injury with his thumb have come up, but manager Aaron Boone and hitting coach Marcus Thames all agree that is not the issue.
New York Yankees: What did Aaron Boone have to say about his slump?
Manager Aaron Boone has said, “It’s a tough stretch for him. He is not putting pitches he should in play when he gets that one he can really pop. It’s more a foul ball or just he’s missing. And such is the ebb and flow of a season, but I don’t think it is thumb-related.”
Thames said, “He’s trying to do too much. He’s getting out of the strike zone and we’ve got to get him back in the strike zone, so he can go back to being himself.” Thames also added that he believes it is not a thumb injury due to when he succeeds at the plate. “He hasn’t said anything to me, but you can just see his exit velo of balls he does put in play, everything is still the same.” Thames said. When Sanchez was swinging it well in May and June, he batted over .320 each month with a combined 15 home runs.
The Yankees have still done well even with Sanchez’s recent struggles. They are 60-33 and are in first place in the AL East. Being six games ahead of Tampa and ten games ahead of Boston, the Yankees are clear postseason contenders.
I don’t expect Sanchez to struggle long. He is one of the league’s premier players and will come back around eventually. A simple adjustment is needed. I believe Sanchez will break out of this soon and return to his All-Star type of play.