WILKES-BARRE, PA – As we enter the third month of the season, the New York Yankees continue to surprise me.
I thought a wild card spot was in the cards, but definitely not a possible No. 1 seed. I mean, come on, the Yankees have outscored their opponents 55-9 in their last five games. And those opponents were the Baltimore Orioles and Boston Red Sox.
Even you unlucky New York Mets fans have to be impressed.
Here are my latest thoughts on the Bombers. Enjoy!
Aaron Judge is a legitimate MVP candidate. About a month ago I traded Aaron Judge for Cleveland Indians ace Corey Kluber in fantasy baseball.
At the time I thought I was getting a steal. I needed pitching in my rotisserie league and I felt that Judge would cool off. But he hasn’t.
In fact, you could argue he’s playing even better than his impressive month of April. Judge is batting .344 now and hit a home run 495 feet on Sunday. 495 FEET!
Watch Aaron Judge destroy this baseball 495 ft: https://t.co/mDfRb0URtS
— YES Network (@YESNetwork) June 11, 2017
Sure he’s not going to finish with a .344 batting average, but I feel confident in saying that he’ll finish above .300, which was something I couldn’t say in April. And we’re talking about a 40-plus homers and 100-plus RBI. Any team would take that.
Greg Bird staying in Triple-A? If I had to guess, and that’s what this is, I don’t think that Greg Bird will be joining the Yankees on their west coast road trip. At least not at first.
While Bird’s pretty comfortable in the field, he has some work to do at the plate. The 24-year-old owns a .200 batting average through four Triple-A games. Even though it’s just four games, I don’t think Bird’s where he wants to be yet. And I don’t think the Yankees feel he’s there yet either.
I know this is going to pain Yankees fans because there’s a pretty strong hatred toward Chris Carter. But Carter is playing much better as of late and he did hit 41 home runs last year.
Carter can handle the reins for a little longer.
Tyler Wade drawing high praise from Mr. October. Reggie Jackson was with the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders a couple weeks ago and he had some glowing remarks for 22-year-old utility man Tyler Wade.
Jackson likened him to Pete Rose, citing Wade’s “big heart.” It was pretty impressive.
“He’s going to be a big-league player,” Jackson said. “People think of him as a guy that’s going to play everywhere. He’s going to play and take somebody’s job and then stay there. That’s what going to happen with him. You’re going to play him in left field. You’re going to play him at shortstop, second base or center field or wherever and he’s going to stick. He’s going to stick because he’s determined to be a big-league player and he has the skillset for it.”
Wade is a name Yankees fans should look up. He’ll be in the mix sooner rather than later.
Not panicking on Masahiro Tanaka, yet. I know some of you are probably curious about my latest opinion regarding Yankees ace Masahiro Tanaka. Well, I’m not too worried.
Has his early performance been alarming? Of course. But it’s June.
This is a guy that many smart baseball people thought could have a CY Young-type season. Tanaka had a 0.38 ERA in 23.2 spring training innings.
Give him three more starts before you sound the alarm.
Here from Greg Bird yourself in the latest Times Leader Sports Report podcast, which was recorded on Thursday.