Sunday, January 29 2023

New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone is sending a message to his reeling clubhouse.

The Yankees’ Friday night loss to the Toronto Blue Jays was their 13th in the last 16 games, and Boone asserted that the Yankees should be “ticked off” and have to “dig” themselves out of the rut.

“We should be ticked off right now, and we need to start playing better— plain and simple,” Boone said. 

“You pour a lot into trying to shake hands at the end of the day, and we’ve been able to do that on balance on a really high clip this year,” Boone later said. “We’ve hit a rough patch and we’ve got to dig ourselves out. We can sit here, and I can keep answering questions and talk about it … but we’ve got to go do it. And the good news is we’ve got all the pieces in that room to do that. I know that’s coming. I know it’s going to happen, but it really sucks going through it.”

After beginning the 2022 MLB season 61-23, New York is now 73-47, good for second in the AL. Their offense has been the primary culprit for the downturn.

Entering Saturday, across their last 10 games, the Yankees have scored a combined 19 runs (1.9 runs per game). Aaron Judge, who has blasted an MLB-best 46 home runs and is a likely AL MVP finalist this season, has hit .167 across that time span. 

Dating back over the last month, and also entering Saturday, the Yankees have posted a combined .698 OPS (18th in MLB), knocked in 103 runs (19th), amassed 199 hits (22nd) and posted a .226 batting average (25th).

They’re currently without outfielders Giancarlo Stanton and Matt Carpenter.

Despite their struggles, the Yankees still own an eight-game lead on the Blue Jays for first place in the AL East as of Saturday. That said, Boone isn’t banking on the Yankees’ divisional lead getting them through the prolonged rough patch.

“I don’t give a crap about the [divisional] lead,” Boone said. “Play better. We’ll handle it. You can talk about that — eight, nine, seven, 10 — we need to play better. If we play like this, it’s not going to matter anyway. We handle our business, we’re in a great spot. We understand that. But we need to handle our business.”

The Yankees attempted to shore up their roster at the MLB trade deadline. They acquired outfielder Andrew Benintendi from the Kansas City Royals, right-hander Frankie Montas from the Oakland Athletics, reliever Scott Effross from the Chicago Cubs, and traded Jordan Montgomery to the St. Louis Cardinals for outfielder Harrison Bader.

However, the bulk of those trades are yet to yield positive results.

Entering Saturday, Benintendi is hitting .188 across his first 21 games with New York. Montas owns a 9.00 ERA across his first three starts. Effross owns a respectable 3.68 ERA in seven appearances out of the team’s bullpen. 

Bader is still rehabbing from a foot injury. To boot, the Yankees traded outfielder Joey Gallo, who owned a .621 OPS, to the Los Angeles Dodgers. Gallo owns a .949 OPS across his first 10 games with the Dodgers.

Boone is in his fifth season managing the Yankees. They’ve made the playoffs in each of the last four seasons, but failed to reach the World Series.

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Source: FOX Sports


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