Yankees’ Gerrit Cole has message for team’s offense after early season struggles

Gerrit Cole, New York Yankees
Sep 29, 2020; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; New York Yankees starting pitcher Gerrit Cole (45) delivers against the Cleveland Indians in the fourth inning at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Yankees sit at .500 on the season through 10 games. The Bombers are preparing to face off against the Detroit Tigers on Wednesday afternoon, a team that hosts a similar record and is coming off a loss against the Kansas City Royals in their most recent game.

So far this year, the Yankees’ offense has enjoyed 328 at-bats, tallying 75 hits and a collective .229 batting average. Despite GM Brian Cashman remaining confident in his roster, they’ve hit 10 homers and 28 RBIs, showcasing minimal production.

The pitching has been mostly fantastic, limiting opposing teams to six runs or less in every game this season. However, without proper run support, the Yankees once again find themselves in a tough spot.

Starting pitcher Gerrit Cole mentioned recently how impressed he’s been by the team’s pitching efficiency, but a bit of help from the offense would go a long way in handing over a comfortable lead to the bullpen.

“From a starting pitcher’s perspective, we want to keep going as long as we can,” Cole said. “We want to try to push our pitch count and our games as deep as we can go to keep [the relievers] as fresh as we can so they can continue to perform at their level. At the same time, from a team aspect, I think it’s important to get on the board early so that we can turn a lead over to those guys.”

Diving into the more detailed metrics for the Yankees lineup, they have been abysmal against left-handed pitching, hosting a .206 average with one homer over 68 at-bats. They’ve been a bit more efficient against right-handed pitching, but still nothing to write home about. The Yankees haven’t scored more than six runs in each of their first 10 games, being blanked by a terrible Baltimore Orioles team on Sunday.

At some point, the sluggers need to come to life since Cashman has invested so much of his time building a power-heavy lineup. The problem with this approach is that when the team goes cold, they are simply ineffective. They don’t have speedy base-runners, and they feature a small number of contact hitters. Despite DJ LeMahieu featuring a batting average above .300, everybody around him continues to strike out, which makes his production irrelevant.

From an objective standpoint, the Yankees seem to be the same exact team from 2021, if not worse, given they didn’t provide the starting pitching with any support, and shortstop is still a huge liability. Unless the sluggers can turn things around quickly, the team could be facing some increasingly real struggles.