The New York Yankees have had trouble plating runs this season. They rank near the bottom of the American League in almost every offensive category, and with the exception of second baseman Robinson Cano, no individual player has had very much success at the plate. Offseason acquisitions Vernon Wells and Travis Hafner had some success early in the season, but since then they’ve done little. Luckily, help has arrived in the form of Derek Jeter and Alfonso Soriano.
Both of these guys had huge days at the plate today against the division rival Tampa Bay Rays — just what the Yankees have needed. Jeter hit the first pitch he saw for a home run and also added another hit, an RBI, a walk and two runs scored. Soriano positively exploded, swatting four hits (one of which was a home run), knocking in three RBI and scoring two runs. Between them they accounted for four of the Yankees’ five runs, and Soriano had the game-winning RBI single in the 9th.
If Jeter and Soriano can replicate today’s performance for the rest of the year, the Yankees offense might not be in such bad shape. In addition, picking up another bat at the deadline would sure up their lineup even more. If Curtis Granderson returns soon from his injury, he could also provide solid protection for Soriano in the five spot.
Yes, the Yankees have had many problems this season. But at least today, they have reason to be optimistic.