When the New York Yankees snagged Giancarlo Stanton from the Miami Marlins, they envisioned acquiring a generational talent capable of smashing at least 30 home runs each season. Although Stanton initially lived up to expectations, blasting 38 homers and racking up 100 RBIs across 158 games in his first season with the Yankees, the subsequent years have been less than stellar.
The Downhill Spiral: What Went Wrong
Stanton played just 18 games in 2019 and a meager 23 during the COVID-abbreviated 2020 season. He did rebound somewhat in 2021 with 35 homers across 139 games and followed it up with 31 homers in 110 games last season. But home runs aren’t the be-all-end-all in baseball, a lesson the Yankees are learning the hard way.
A Deeper Dive Into Stanton’s Metrics
Last season, Stanton posted a disappointing batting average of .211 and an on-base percentage (OBP) of just .297. Fast forward to this season, and the metrics are still lagging: a .202 batting average and a .283 OBP, along with 19 home runs and 49 RBIs over 79 games. Despite his extraordinary hard-hit rate of 48.3% and a barrel rate of 16.3%—some of the best metrics on the team—Stanton’s numbers reveal a below-average hitter who struggles to make a significant impact.
The Yankees’ Financial Strain: Is Stanton Worth It?
Here’s the kicker: the Yankees are shelling out $22 million in luxury tax for Stanton, who carries a total salary hit of $32 million. While the Miami Marlins do pitch in $10 million per season, it’s still an exorbitant price to pay for a player who’s underperforming and offers little in the way of defense.
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Stanton’s Self-Assessment and Future Outlook
As reported by Dan Martin of the New York Post, Stanton has been keenly monitoring his slugging metrics but recognizes the disconnect between the numbers and actual production. “I’m at the point of the year where none of that [stuff] matters. Now, it’s ‘Did you do enough to help win the game? Did I impact the game? Yes or no?’”
The Giancarlo Stanton, who could effortlessly hit 50+ homers seems like a relic of the past. With four years and $118 million remaining on his contract, both the Yankees and Stanton himself recognize that a turnaround is crucial for future success. Stanton’s eye-popping slugging metrics are no longer enough to sustain his production, signaling that a strategy shift could be on the horizon.