The New York Yankees have had an absolutely atrocious August and have put themselves in an extremely poor position despite making some quality trades. They have won 4 games in the month compared to 14 losses. There are various reasons for this collapse, but the primary two are the mounting injuries as well as the heavy-hitting slump the team has gone through since late July.
The main question most MLB fans are asking right now…what is happening with the AL East powerhouse, and why have they struggled so heavily in the last month?
Injuries dampening the team both in the field and on the mound
In the past month, the Yankees’ primary issue has been dealing with injuries across the rotation. Matt Carpenter being placed on 10-day IL is a hard hit, as he was providing a good spark to the Yankees’ power hitting with 15 homers on the year and .727 slugging on a .305 batting average.
On top of that, the Yankees also lost Giancarlo Stanton and Harrison Bader to 10-day IL, both of whom are normally in the starting rotation and have been playing at a relatively high level this season.
New York is also missing 2 of its 3 primary closers in Scott Effross (day to day) and Clay Holmes (IL15). This forces them to rely almost solely on Aroldis Chapman, who has a 4.70 ERA, and in 30.2 innings pitched has given up 22 hits, 16 runs, 4 homers, and walked 22 batters. Simply put he is inconsistent, some days he can shut down, and other days he just completely blows a save for the team.
Power rotation going through a slump all at once
There was a statistic that was surfacing on social media yesterday that is extremely telling as to why the Yankees are losing so often. This is a summary of that statistic entering last night’s game:
- Aaron Judge (last 8 games): .148 batting average & 0 home runs
- Gleyber Torres (last 19 games): .171 batting average & 3 XBH
- Anthony Rizzo (last 11 games): .143 batting average & 1 home run
- D.J. LeMahieu (last 13 games): .189 batting average & 3 XBH
- Andrew Benintendi (since joining NYY): .192 & 0 HR (up until yesterday, now 1)
Simply put, the Yankees are really struggling to get the bat on the ball and drive it into the gaps. The team was firing hard on all cylinders in July, which somewhat wore them out for August and caused a mass slump for most of the players on the team.
The addition of injuries previously spoken about created a huge situation where the Yankees either had bad hitters at certain positions or just people in the middle of a slump. This is what has caused the Yankees’ current downward trend, as when they did win games in August, they put up a combined 24 runs in those 4 games, showing how important their offense was.
Overall, the Yankees should be looking to get back on track soon, with most of their injured players only being on short-term IL. Slumps do not last forever, and with the amount of talent NYY has, they should be able to recover from this well and make a hard push entering the playoffs.
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