Asking AI: ‘Who’s in the Yankees’ All-Time Best Lineup?’ – here’s what they said

John Allen
Monday December 18, 2023

Table of Contents

In the quest to assemble the ultimate Yankees lineup, we put out our own last week, but this week we turned to the world of artificial intelligence for answers. But instead of consulting just one AI, we challenged three different chatbots to provide their insights. Each of these digital minds, developed by leading tech companies, brings a unique perspective to the table, combining vast data analysis with machine learning. In this unprecedented experiment, we explore how AI interprets baseball history, statistics, and legacy to create what could be the greatest Yankees lineup ever conceived. Let’s dive into what each of these AI chatbots had to say, and see if they agree or offer distinct visions of Yankee greatness.

First up in the lineup – Chatgpt

Chatgpt

You

what would be the all time Yankees lineup of position players?

ChatGPT

Creating an all-time lineup for the New York Yankees, a team with a rich history and numerous legendary players, can be quite challenging due to the sheer number of talented athletes who have donned the pinstripes. However, based on historical performance, impact on the game, and their legacy with the Yankees, here’s a possible all-time lineup of position players:

  1. Derek Jeter (Shortstop) – A great contact hitter with speed, ideal for setting the table.
  2. Lou Gehrig (First Base) – A high average hitter with power, perfect for moving runners and driving in early runs.
  3. Babe Ruth (Right Field) – The ultimate power hitter, placed here to drive in runs early in the game.
  4. Mickey Mantle (Center Field) – Another powerful switch hitter, providing back-to-back threat with Ruth.
  5. Joe DiMaggio (Center Field) – High average and power, ideal for driving in additional runs and keeping the momentum.
  6. Alex Rodriguez (Third Base) – A powerful cleanup hitter, great for driving in the heart of the order.
  7. Yogi Berra (Catcher) – Clutch hitter, very good at getting on base and driving in runs.
  8. Robinson Cano (Second Base) – Provides both average and power lower in the lineup, keeping the pressure on.
  9. Don Mattingly (First Base) – Although typically a top-of-the-order hitter, Mattingly’s contact skills make him ideal to turn the lineup over.

This lineup blends players from different eras, each bringing their unique skills and achievements to the table. It’s a testament to the Yankees’ storied history that so many other greats could be considered for such a list.

You

would this be the order of the lineup as well?

ChatGPT

The lineup I provided is more about selecting the all-time greats at each position for the Yankees rather than an actual batting order. Creating an optimal batting order from these legends, considering their strengths, era, and typical batting positions, would look a bit different. Here’s a possible lineup order that balances power, average, speed, and strategic placement:

  1. Derek Jeter (Shortstop) – A great contact hitter with speed, ideal for setting the table.
  2. Lou Gehrig (First Base) – A high average hitter with power, perfect for moving runners and driving in early runs.
  3. Babe Ruth (Right Field) – The ultimate power hitter, placed here to drive in runs early in the game.
  4. Mickey Mantle (Center Field) – Another powerful switch hitter, providing back-to-back threat with Ruth.
  5. Joe DiMaggio (Center Field) – High average and power, ideal for driving in additional runs and keeping the momentum.
  6. Alex Rodriguez (Third Base) – A powerful cleanup hitter, great for driving in the heart of the order.
  7. Yogi Berra (Catcher) – Clutch hitter, very good at getting on base and driving in runs.
  8. Robinson Cano (Second Base) – Provides both average and power lower in the lineup, keeping the pressure on.
  9. Don Mattingly (First Base) – Although typically a top-of-the-order hitter, Mattingly’s contact skills make him ideal to turn the lineup over.

This order is designed to maximize run production, blending speed, contact hitting, and power. It’s important to note that all these players played in different eras with different styles of play, making this an exercise in hypotheticals rather than a reflection of any actual game strategy used by the Yankees.

You

what would be the all time Yankees lineup of position players?

ChatGPT

Creating an all-time lineup for the New York Yankees, a team with a rich history and numerous legendary players, can be quite challenging due to the sheer number of talented athletes who have donned the pinstripes. However, based on historical performance, impact on the game, and their legacy with the Yankees, here’s a possible all-time lineup of position players:

  1. Babe Ruth (Right Field) – An iconic figure in baseball history, Ruth revolutionized the sport with his unprecedented power hitting.
  2. Lou Gehrig (First Base) – Known as the “Iron Horse,” Gehrig was a model of consistency and excellence, famously playing 2,130 consecutive games.
  3. Joe DiMaggio (Center Field) – A symbol of grace and excellence, DiMaggio is remembered for his 56-game hitting streak, a record that still stands.
  4. Mickey Mantle (Center Field/First Base) – Mantle’s power from both sides of the plate and his speed made him one of the most feared hitters in baseball.
  5. Derek Jeter (Shortstop) – The face of the Yankees for two decades, Jeter was known for his leadership, clutch hitting, and defensive plays.
  6. Yogi Berra (Catcher) – Berra was not only a great defensive catcher but also a powerful hitter, contributing significantly to the Yankees’ success.
  7. Alex Rodriguez (Third Base) – One of the most talented and controversial players, Rodriguez was a powerful hitter and a solid defender.
  8. Don Mattingly (First Base) – While his career was shortened by back injuries, Mattingly was one of the best hitters of the 1980s.
  9. Robinson Cano (Second Base) – Cano provided both offensive prowess and defensive skill at second base during his time with the Yankees.

This lineup blends players from different eras, each bringing their unique skills and achievements to the table. It’s a testament to the Yankees’ storied history that so many other greats could be considered for such a list.

You

would this be the order of the lineup as well?

ChatGPT

The lineup I provided is more about selecting the all-time greats at each position for the Yankees rather than an actual batting order. Creating an optimal batting order from these legends, considering their strengths, era, and typical batting positions, would look a bit different. Here’s a possible lineup order that balances power, average, speed, and strategic placement:

  1. Derek Jeter (Shortstop) – A great contact hitter with speed, ideal for setting the table.4
  2. Lou Gehrig (First Base) – A high average hitter with power, perfect for moving runners and driving in early runs.
  3. Babe Ruth (Right Field) – The ultimate power hitter, placed here to drive in runs early in the game.
  4. Mickey Mantle (Center Field) – Another powerful switch hitter, providing back-to-back threat with Ruth.
  5. Joe DiMaggio (Center Field) – High average and power, ideal for driving in additional runs and keeping the momentum.
  6. Alex Rodriguez (Third Base) – A powerful cleanup hitter, great for driving in the heart of the order.
  7. Yogi Berra (Catcher) – Clutch hitter, very good at getting on base and driving in runs.
  8. Robinson Cano (Second Base) – Provides both average and power lower in the lineup, keeping the pressure on.
  9. Don Mattingly (First Base) – Although typically a top-of-the-order hitter, Mattingly’s contact skills make him ideal to turn the lineup over.

This order is designed to maximize run production, blending speed, contact hitting, and power. It’s important to note that all these players played in different eras with different styles of play, making this an exercise in hypotheticals rather than a reflection of any actual game strategy used by the Yankees.

Next we tried Claude AI,

claudeai.com

It didn’t need to be prompted further, as it immediately responded with a lineup that made sense, not just by position, but by order in the lineup.

Me

Claude AI

what would be the all time Yankees lineup of position players?

Here is one potential take on the Yankees’ all-time great position players lineup:

  1. LF Rickey Henderson – All-time great leadoff hitter and base stealer who had some big years with the Yankees.
  2. SS Derek Jeter – Yankees all-time hits leader, 5x champion, face of the franchise in the late 90s/early 2000s.
  3. CF Joe DiMaggio – Iconic Yankee, 3x MVP, dominated the late 30s into the 40s.
  4. RF Babe Ruth – The greatest Yankee and one of the best players of all time, dominant hitter.
  5. 1B Lou Gehrig – Yankees Iron Horse with huge power and elite consistency.
  6. 3B Alex Rodriguez – Controversial but put up huge numbers as a Yankee, 696 career home runs.
  7. C Yogi Berra – 3x MVP, powerful hitter, 10x champ, and leader behind the plate.
  8. 2B Robinson Cano – Best second baseman in Yankees history in terms of overall production.
  9. DH Mickey Mantle – Injuries pushed The Mick to DH later in his career, but his peak was as good as anyone’s.

I tried to balance having the biggest legends with a logical batting order. The middle of DiMaggio, Ruth, Gehrig is just absurd of course. Other big name Yankees like Bernie Williams, Don Mattingly, Thurman Munson were also considered. There are definitely arguments to make tweaks, but this captures multiple eras of historic Yankee greats.

Perplexity AI

Perplexity AI

Lastly, we checked with Perplexity AI,

Prompter

what would be the all time Yankees lineup of position players?

Perplexity AI:

The all-time New York Yankees lineup of position players typically includes some of the greatest players in the history of the sport. Based on various sources, the lineup would likely include the following players:

  1. Catcher: Yogi Berra
  2. First Base: Lou Gehrig
  3. Second Base: Joe Gordon
  4. Shortstop: Derek Jeter
  5. Third Base: Alex Rodriguez
  6. Left Field: Mickey Mantle
  7. Center Field: Joe DiMaggio
  8. Right Field: Babe Ruth

This lineup represents some of the most iconic and successful players in the history of the New York Yankees.

In Conclusion

Well, would you look at that – when you get three AI masterminds together to craft an all-time best Yankees lineup, what you end up with is a perfect showcase of just how much legendary talent has passed through the Bronx over the years.

While ChatGPT, Claude, and Perplexity each took their own approach, we saw some clear common threads emerge. The Babe mashing moonshots, Joltin’ Joe gliding across center field, the Captain leading the charge – some selections were simply indisputable.

But the subtle differences between the lineups are also a nod to the colorful debate and discourse that makes baseball fandom so fun in the first place. There’s just no definitive right answer when ranking the embarrassment of pinstriped riches that stars like Gehrig, Mantle, Berra and Rivera represent.

At the end of the day, nursing these fun “what if” scenarios is part of what fuels being a diehard fan. And it crystalizes how the lore and mystique of baseball history echoes through generations. You can’t encapsulate that kind of legacy in just cold stats on a page.

So while we might quibble on the perfect lineup construction, one truth stands tall – when it comes to legendary, larger-than-life icons that tower over the game, no franchise can touch the Yankees’ parade of greats…and the magic they’ve brought to America’s pastime over the years.

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