Without slugger Luke Voit, the New York Yankees might not have even competed during the 2020 regular season. His power and efficiency at the plate fueled a Yankee squad damaged with injuries in the outfield and in the pitching rotation. Without Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton, Gleyber Torres, and James Paxon for large chunks of the campaign, manager Aaron Boone had to rely on other players like Voit and Clint Frazier to pick up the load. They even dove into their youth ranks, elevating Deivi Garcia to the starting rotation.
Voit finished the year with a league-best and career-high 22 homers in just 56 games. That is a phenomenal rate and completely overhauled a lineup that lost multiple sluggers throughout the year.
It is also important to recognize that Voit suffered through a foot injury for the majority of the season, battling and playing despite the pain. Other Yankees were unable to do the same, but his toughness and grit showed why he is an essential piece to the roster and a player that management can rely on daily.
In terms of improvement, Voit has taken steady leaps yearly to become a more competent and complete player.
â€œI just feel more compact, stronger. One thing this year too is Iâ€™m finishing with two hands. I think thatâ€™s helping me with my bat path through the zone and getting better extension,â€ Voit said on his increased power in 2020.
Luke slimmed down this season, taking off a bit of weight and adding more muscle mass to his frame. That gave him more athleticism and bat speed, making him a more complete hitter. However, it also added in his power, allowing him to hit nearly a home run every two games.
â€œWeâ€™re seeing the growth of a really good hitter thatâ€™s gone to another level,â€ Aaron Boone said in September. â€œItâ€™s hard to imagine where weâ€™d be without Luke Voit.â€
Management understands Voitâ€™s value at this point, and while trade rumors will likely circulate around him this off-season, the Yankees would be foolish to let him go and dominate for another club.