The Yankees have a great shot to end their World Series drought in 2019, but don’t expect things to go exactly according to plan for New York.
Most Yankee fans enter the 2019 season with the belief that anything less than a 28th World Series title will be deemed a failure. Manager Aaron Boone’s team might break through and achieve that level of success, but there are going to be plenty of surprises along the way.
In this piece, we’ll break down five bold predictions for the Yankees season. These aren’t things we’d necessarily bet on occurring. Instead, they are predictions that we believe have a stronger chance of coming true than most other people. Also note this is a piece for bold predictions, not crazy ones. We might go after the latter closer to Opening Day.
Without further delay, let’s jump right in with an interesting call about left field.
5. Neither Clint Frazier or Brett Gardner will start in October
No, this doesn’t mean we’re expecting a miraculous comeback from Jacoby Ellsbury. Instead, we think left field is a position that General Manager Brian Cashman may look to upgrade at the trade deadline. Corner outfielders should be readily available if the team is willing to take on a little bit of extra salary down the stretch.
Obviously, the higher-ups in the organization will be disappointed if the combination of Frazier and Gardner can hold the job down. For Gardner, it’s largely a question of age. His skills are definitely on the decline and this could be the season where he falls off a cliff. There’s a reason the Yankees only gave him a one-year deal to come back.
For Frazier, it’s all about staying healthy. His excellent bat speed gives the Yankees real optimism that he can become an above average regular, but that’s only possible if he can avoid the concussion issues that plagued him in 2018.
If both guys struggle, Cashman will swing a move ahead of the deadline. The Yankees will not accept below-average production from the left field spot heading into the postseason.