The New York Yankees sit at the top of the AL East with a 13.5-game cushion over the Boston Red Sox in 2nd place. In all of baseball, they host a six-game cushion over the Houston Astros, indicating that most of general manager Brian Cashman’s moves this past off-season have panned out.
However, it is easy to focus on some of the bigger names, but one under-the-radar acquisition was Matt Carpenter. The Yankees have gotten the absolute most out of Carpenter since his first appearance on May 26 against the Tampa Bay Rays. The Bombers scooped him off the Texas Rangers’ Triple-A squad.
In fact, Carpenter’s role has continued to grow over the past few weeks, enjoying multiple games this year with two homers and four RBIs or more.
Manager Aaron Boone has been keen to utilize Carpenter in a myriad of ways, including putting him in the outfield against the Cleveland Indians on Sunday. Carpenter has experience at first base, second base, third base and has a few reps in both left and right field over the years.
“I said,’Let’s rip the Band-Aid off it today,’” Boone said after putting Carpenter in the outfield.
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The Yankees are getting insane value out of Carp:
Matt’s biggest impact has been in the batter’s box. The 36-year-old lefty is hitting .286 with a 41.2% on-base rate over 52 plate appearances.
Most impressively, Carpenter has smacked eight homers this season with 17 RBIs. He features a 26.9% strikeout rate and 15.4% walk rate, his highest number since 2017. The fact he’s been able to hit eight homers in just 52 plate appearances is almost inconceivable.
In the month of June, Carpenter hit .304 with a 45% on base rate and .870 slugging percentage. He smacked four homers with 10 RBIs in 23 at-bats, striking out seven times.
This past off-season, Carpenter went on a cross-country road trip to fix his swing, and clearly, the Yankees are getting the absolute most out of the veteran infielder. If he can continue to produce at this level, especially from the left side of the plate, the Yankees might get a few more big moments out of him down the stretch.