The Yankees just got their $325 million dollar man outfielder back for 9 games, but the 29-year-old is heading back to the Injury List.
New York placed Stanton on the IL on June 26th, citing a strained PCL in his right knee that’s going to keep the veteran from travelling with the team to England in the London series. On top of that, Yankees GM Brian Cashman added that it was unlikely Stanton would play in July, so his return date is sometime in August at the moment.
Stanton’s injury doesn’t seem too serious, according to manager Aaron Boone who was surprised to find it was a PCL injury, but it’s still going to keep Stanton out of the lineup for some time.
“He’s going on the IL, I didn’t necessarily expect that. I think it explains the pain he was in when he came in,” Boone added. “Frustrated for him knowing how much he’s worked to get back and the couple of setbacks he’s had along the way. Felt like he was starting to get in a groove with us a little bit. We got to deal with it and hope to get him right at some point.”
The Yankees, who are winners of 11 of their last 12 games, are currently the hottest team in baseball and are tied for the best record in the American League. They hold a 7 game lead over the Rays and a 9 game lead over the Red Sox in the AL East. The current group is 4th in home runs and Slugging, 5th in on-base percentage, and only the Twins have scored more runs than the Yankees at the moment.
In other words, the Yankees really don’t need Stanton right now. Of course, any team in baseball would love to add Giancarlo Stanton to their lineup, he’s only going to make the Yankees a better team. But, are they hurting for Stanton right now? Not even a little bit.
This team still has 13 guys on their IL, including Stanton, but they also just got back Aaron Judge, Didi Gregorius, and Aaron Hicks over the last week and were already one of the most formidable teams in baseball. In case you forgot, this is the same team that hit a home run in 28-straight games.
The frustrating part is that Stanton is going to be out for an extended period of time and he was just starting to find his stroke at the plate with a .840 OPS in those nine games, hitting his first home run of the season just a few nights ago.
At the moment, the Yankees outfield will likely be comprised of Aaron Judge, Brett Gardner, and Aaron Hicks most nights that’s still pretty freaking good. Plus, with the addition of DH Edwin Encarnacion and his 24 home runs on the season, the Yankees should have plenty of power to keep runners crossing home plate.
Let Stanton take his time getting back, ensure he’s 100% before returning, and let your 6’6″ 245 lbs. slugger mash his way through the final two months of baseball right before the postseason starts. But anyone who’s freaking out about the Bronx Bombers hasn’t been paying attention to this year’s club, these guys can swing that bat.