Yankees Have Lofty Goals For 2024: ‘Hell-bent on being a champion’

MLB: New York Yankees at Oakland Athletics, aaron boone
Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

Pitchers and catchers reported to spring training for the Yankees on Wednesday afternoon, starting a multi-week process leading up to the beginning of the 2024 MLB season.

The Yankees have lofty expectations, notably a championship appearance and hopeful victory, but a lot of work will go into a season that will hopefully continue into October, especially coming off a disappointing 2023 campaign.

Yankees’ Offseason Moves and Expectations

The Yankees hosted one of the worst offenses in baseball last season, not to mention a below-average pitching rotation, a group that was decimated by injury. However, they prioritized investing in more offense, acquiring Juan Soto and Alex Verdugo to support the outfield.

Soto is a Hall of Fame-level player at just 25 years old, coming off a season where he played all 162 games, hitting .275/.410/.519. He also hit a career-high of 35 home runs and 109 RBIs, enjoying an 18.2% strikeout rate and 18.6% walk rate. Impressively, Soto has hosted a higher walk rate than strike-out percentage for four consecutive seasons.

While Verdugo is no Soto, he can hold his own in the batter’s box. The former Boston Red Sox outfielder is considered a slightly above-average bat and should be able to capitalize on the short right portion of Yankee Stadium. At the very least, the offense should take a big step forward, whether it be from a general production standpoint or boosting their numbers with runners in scoring position.

Leadership’s Vision for the Season

Manager Aaron Boone spoke to the media on Wednesday afternoon, dropping an exciting quote, indicating the team has one goal in mind: A World Series trophy.

“We’re hell-bent on being a champion. We understand very well that last year was not anything that anyone in this organization wants, demands, or expects.”

General manager Brian Cashman has been making moves over the past few months, but many would agree that one final addition to the starting rotation would be ideal.

Strategic Patience and Future Moves

Whether it be a free agent like Blake Snell or Jordan Montgomery, the Yankees have poked around the trade market, failing to land Corbin Burnes but could pivot to another available starter. Shane Bieber of the Cleveland Guardians makes sense, but the team may be better off waiting until after spring training or even until the summer deadline to guarantee health at the time of acquisition.

The Yankees have had issues in the health department over the past few years, so a premature move could lead to further disaster so being patient and waiting for the right deal to cross their desk seems like a good strategy.

The next few weeks will be exciting as the team takes the field and prepares for simulation games. Several young prospects and non-roster invites will be competing for spots on the 40-man, so expect plenty of competition as spring training unravels.

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