As the Yankees offense has struggled for much of the team’s recent poor stretch, Giancarlo Stanton acknowledged it’s been “very annoying and frustrating” to have missed time with the left Achilles tendinitis that has sidelined him since July 23.
But he added he’d “be back soon,” likely on Thursday in Oakland, which is why he is among those not panicking over how bad the team — and the lineup — has been.
“We’re gonna turn it around and we’ll be fine,” Stanton said before the Yankees opened the Subway Series with a 4-2 win in The Bronx on Monday. “I think there’s plenty of time to change whatever narrative is going on right now and be fine.”
He’ll play a large role in that, since the Yankees have clearly missed his presence.
Though he’s been up and down for much of the season, Stanton’s ability to make pitchers work and the threat he presents even when he’s not clicking has been missed, with the Yankees having a difficult time finding players to support Aaron Judge in the heart of the lineup.
Despite the shaky performance by the offense overall, general manager Brian Cashman said in a press conference on Monday he wasn’t worried about the lineup.
“It happens,” Cashman said of the lack of runs lately, with the Yankees having scored more than four runs just once in the past 10 games.
“Losing Giancarlo Stanton to [the injured list] and [DJ] LeMahieu and [Anthony] Rizzo are important guys that were not available,” Cashman said. “Throw on top of that some slumps that happened at the same time.”
Without naming names, that would include Gleyber Torres and Josh Donaldson, as well as the newly arrived Andrew Benintendi, who has hit better of late and stayed hot Monday.
“We know what we are and that we’re capable of producing a lot of runs when everything is in alignment,” Cashman said. “Right now, it’s gotten out of alignment.”
But Cashman thinks it’s just a matter of time.
“It’s easier said than done [to fix it],” Cashman said. “We’ll try to address [the issues] in the same way we did when things were going so well.”
And unlike last season, when the Yankees finished 19th overall in runs scored, this year’s lineup has a better résumé.
“The biggest thing is last year I feel like was a whole season-long slump,” Cashman said.
That resulted in the firing of hitting coach Marcus Thames and assistant hitting coach P.J. Pilittere following the season and the hiring of Dillon Lawson and assistants Casey Dykes and Hensley Meulens.
“I compliment them on the fact that they have good, strong processes in place as a group and with each individual player profile,” Cashman said. “They are consistent and dedicated with how they go about their business and that has not changed.”
It helps, of course, if you have healthy players.
Stanton back in form would be a boost. Even after missing a month, he’s third on the team in homers (24), OPS (.807) and OPS-plus (128).
He will start off as a DH before a planned move back to the outfield on occasion.
Still, Stanton dismissed the notion that he’d fix all the team’s offensive issues.
“I’ll just come and do what I’ve been doing all year to help us win every day,” Stanton said. “Not being out there grinding with the guys has been tough.”
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