Giancarlo Stanton’s early surge driving excited Yankees to dream big

Yankees slugger Giancarlo Stanton celebrates after his grand slam vs. Marlins at Yankee Stadium on April 9, 2023.
Rav
By Rav
Friday April 12, 2024

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The Yankees may have fallen to the Marlins in their series finale, but the team still found a reason for optimism – the continued resurgence of slugger Giancarlo Stanton.

Despite the loss, Giancarlo Stanton provided a bright spot by blasting his 4th home run of the young season. The sixth-inning shot was the latest evidence that the former MVP is rediscovering his dominant form at the plate.

It’s still far too early to declare Giancarlo Stanton’s issues fully resolved, given the small sample size. However, his early power surge is an extremely encouraging sign for the Yankees’ offense. It suggests the $100+ million left on his contract won’t be a sunk cost, as the team had feared might be the case after his injury-plagued 2022 campaign.

If Giancarlo Stanton can sustain this level of production, it would be a massive boost for a Yankees lineup still searching for consistent offensive firepower. While one game doesn’t make a season, His big fly offered a tantalizing glimpse of his game-changing potential.

Giancarlo Stanton commented after the Yankees lost the series finale to the Marlins on Wednesday that he was currently in a good place with his swing, expressing his desire to keep the momentum going.

“I’m in a good place now,” the slugger told after the Marlins game. “Keep it rolling.”

Giancarlo Stanton has come into the 2023 season looking leaner and more agile after a dedicated offseason regimen. That physical transformation has paid early dividends, as the 34-year-old slugger is off to a torrid start at the plate.

Through his first 11 games, Giancarlo Stanton is sporting an impressive .894 OPS, a significant improvement from his slow start to last season. If the former MVP can sustain this level of production, it would be a massive boost for a Yankees lineup that already features superstars Juan Soto and Aaron Judge.

The Yankees organization is certainly aware of Giancarlo Stanton’s importance to their offensive firepower. His ability to recapture his youthful dominance could make their lineup nearly unstoppable for opposing pitchers.

While it’s a small sample size, Giancarlo Stanton’s early surge offers an extremely encouraging sign for the Yankees’ championship aspirations in 2023. Marcus Stroman remarked that the slugger looked intimidating in the batter’s box at the moment. He acknowledged that having someone like G in that form was undoubtedly a significant advantage for their team.

“He looks scary in the box right now for sure,” the pitcher said. “Obviously anytime you got G like that, it’s definitely a big plus for us.”

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AP

Giancarlo Stanton showcasing dominant early-season form

Yankee slugger Giancarlo Stanton continued his power surge on Wednesday, blasting his 405th career home run. The milestone shot made him just the 48th player in MLB history to reach the 400-home run plateau.

Perhaps even more impressively, Giancarlo Stanton has now connected for home runs against all 30 teams across his 14 big-league seasons. This feat underscores his status as one of the game’s most feared power hitters over the past decade and a half.

Giancarlo Stanton’s hot start comes after he arrived at spring training noticeably slimmer, the result of a dedicated offseason regimen aimed at reducing the lower body injuries that have plagued him during his Yankees tenure. Some had wondered if the weight loss could come at the expense of his legendary raw power, but Giancarlo Stanton has quickly put those concerns to rest.

With 3 home runs in his last 5 games, including a grand slam, the 34-year-old slugger appears to have successfully incorporated some tweaks to his swing mechanics. These adjustments come after he struggled to a career-low .191 batting average and .695 OPS last season.

If Giancarlo Stanton can maintain this level of production, it would provide a massive boost to a Yankees lineup already stacked with superstars like Aaron Judge and Juan Soto. His continued power resurgence could make the Bronx Bombers’ offense nearly unstoppable.

“He’s a grinder. He’s been grinding every day,” Soto said. “To see him in the cage — he’s taking really serious swings and everything I think. And now he’s getting payoff.”

Yankees slugger Giancarlo Stanton
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After a slow start to the 2023 season, Yankees slugger Giancarlo Stanton has caught fire over the past week. In his last 5 games, Stanton is batting a scorching .421 (8-for-19) with 3 home runs, 7 RBIs and 5 runs scored. His eye-popping 1.450 OPS during this hot stretch shows he has successfully turned things around after a dismal start to the year.

Serving as the protection behind superstar Aaron Judge in the Yankees lineup, Giancarlo Stanton’s renewed power surge could not come at a better time for the club. As they prepare to face the Cleveland Guardians in a weekend series, the Yankees will be leaning on Giancarlo Stanton to maintain this torrid pace and provide a potent complement to Judge’s production. If Stanton can sustain this level of performance, it would be a massive boost for the Bronx Bombers’ high-powered offense.

“Man, he looks good, right?” manager Aaron Boone said. “He’s been in the at-bats all year. I think he’s now getting into a pretty good timing and rhythm up there. Looks really good.”

The true test for Giancarlo Stanton’s resurgence will come when he faces higher-caliber pitching. So far, his recent power surge has come against relatively pedestrian velocity, raising questions about whether he can maintain this torrid pace when facing elite arms.

Giancarlo Stanton’s 4 home runs have come against pitches ranging from 80 mph curveballs to 93 mph fastballs. However, when facing even harder velocity of at least 94 mph, he has managed just 1 hit in 10 at-bats this season – a small but concerning sample size.

As the Yankees prepare to take on tougher competition, the focus will shift to whether Giancarlo Stanton can continue to mash when the pitching gets better. If he can translate his current success against better pitching, it would be an extremely encouraging sign for the Yankees’ lineup. But the jury is still out on his ability to maintain this torrid pace long-term.

Rebound on cards?

Last season, troubling signs emerged that Giancarlo Stanton was struggling to catch up to high-velocity fastballs as he entered his mid-30s. Against any pitches 94 mph or harder, Stanton managed just a .160 batting average and .613 OPS, a significant decline from his typically dominant power numbers.

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AP

Perhaps contributing to those issues was the hamstring strain that sidelined Giancarlo Stanton for nearly two months early in the year. The lengthy injury layoff may have impacted his ability to get the bat through the zone quickly enough to catch up to premium velocity.

Yankees manager Aaron Boone acknowledged that Giancarlo Stanton’s improved health has been a key factor in his hot start this season. After arriving at camp in noticeably better shape, the 34-year-old slugger has shown flashes of recapturing his prime form.

However, it remains to be seen whether Giancarlo Stanton can maintain this success against the highest-octane pitching. His early-season damage has come mostly against more pedestrian velocity, raising questions about whether he can continue to mash when facing the true power arms.

The Yankees will get an early test on this front during their upcoming series against the Guardians. Cleveland is not expected to throw many mid-to-upper 90s fastballs, with starters like Carlos Carrasco, Tristan McKenzie, and Logan Allen on the docket. This could allow Giancarlo Stanton to further build up his confidence before facing a tougher slate of power pitchers.

If Giancarlo Stanton can prove he has regained the ability to punish premium velocity, it would be a hugely encouraging sign for the Yankees’ World Series aspirations. The team will be counting on the veteran slugger to maintain this torrid pace and provide a fearsome presence behind Aaron Judge in the lineup.

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