Boy have the Yankees been bad lately, huh? It’s borderline unfathomable to me. They’re implementing the classic formula for a struggling baseball team: when the offense is good, the pitching is bad; when the pitching is good, the offense is bad. And, of course, when both are good, the bullpen blows the late lead. It’s brutal.
Anyway, the Yankee offense has been horrible since the 5-14 stretch began on August 18. I was going to write a whole post about it, but it’s honestly pretty deflating. Besides, what is there to say? We all know they’ve been horrible. There’s very little new ground here. So, instead, I’m going to bullet out this misery:
- Yankees batters have a .205 batting average in their last 672 plate appearances. That ranks 28th out of 30, ahead of Cincinnati (.202) and Arizona (.197).
- They have a .304 on-base-percentage, ranking the Yanks 25th in the league.
- Amazingly, the Bronx “Bombers” have a .354 slugging percentage over the period. It’s better than just two other teams, Texas (.341) and Arizona (.328).
- For the team, they’ve been hitting .205/.304/.354 in the last nearly 700 plate appearances. That is “good” for an 80 wRC+, which ranks 25th out of 30. That is good for a .657 OPS, which ranks 27th.
- Put another way, they have a .290 wOBA – ranking them above Kansas City (.289), Pittsburgh (.286), Arizona (.270), and Texas (.269).
- The Yanks still have some power, with an average exit velocity of 88.6 mph, which puts them 15th and a .149 ISO that ranks 22nd. This is more in line with their .330 xWOBA, which ranks 21st.
- Overall, the Yankees offense has posted 0.2 fWAR. That’s 28th out of 30, with just Arizona (-0.7) and Texas (-1.8) clocking in worse over the period.
Pretty bad, right? How about a few more, this time a bit more in-depth:
- The Yanks have a .283 wOBA against high-velocity fastballs (any over 95 mph). That’s 24th out of 30. Their .184 batting average against them ranks 26th out of 30.
- Their .190 BABIP against such fastballs is consistent with their actual batting average and ranks 29th out of 30. The good news, though, is they “should” perform better, with a .342 xWOBA that ranks 15th and an average exit velocity of 89.3 mph that ranks 18th.
- Teams have noticed, throwing them 18.1% of the time against the Yanks, the second-highest clip in the league. Hey, I’d do it too.
- Lest you think it was just fastballs, they also have a .188 BA (26th), .236 wOBA (25th) and .266 xWOBA (26th) against off-speed stuff.
- As I’m sure you can imagine by now, they’ve been abysmal against breaking pitches too. Our Bombers have a .153 BA (29th), .196 wOBA (30th), and .266 xWOBA (25th) line against those offerings.
- Finally, they can’t even hit anything right down the middle. They have a .230 BA (30th), .268 wOBA (30th), and .354 xWOBA (25th) against 692 pitches in the heart of the plate. Pretty frustrating!
If you’re still here, there are two pieces of good news. The first is that the Yankees are still taking pitches (their 28.7% chase rate is a top-10 mark) and they still walking (their 11.3% walk rate ranks 4th). That bodes well in the long-run.
The second is that every team, no matter how good, is bound to struggle at some point. It won’t stay this bad forever – even in a pandemic-shortened season, the law of averages will win out. We’ll forget about this soon, but until then, it’s rough waters ahead for the New York Yankees.