Most fans believe Anthony Rizzo’s Yankees future bleak

Anthony Rizzo and best friend Aaron Judge are watching the Yankees vs. Red Sox game at Fenway Park on June 15, 2024.
Sara Molnick
Sunday June 16, 2024

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Despite their recent success, the New York Yankees face ongoing concerns at first base with Anthony Rizzo. The situation has prompted a fan poll to gauge how much longer Yankees supporters believe Rizzo should be in the everyday lineup before a change is made.

Anthony Rizzo, known for his consistent track record, has been given some leeway during his slump. However, his severe struggles from mid-May to early June have raised questions about his future as a starter. These concerns, lingering since last season, have carried into 2024, pushing the team to consider alternative options. In response, the Yankees gave Anthony Rizzo some time off last weekend to clear his head and reset.

The fan poll revealed a divide in opinions, with the most votes going to two middle-ground options, reflecting fans’ preferred strategies rather than predictions of the team’s actions.

Yankees fans agree that the Rizzo Clock is ticking
Kyle Thele

The option predicting a change by the end of June, which received substantial support, implies a window of about two and a half weeks for Anthony Rizzo to improve his performance significantly. This would require a turnaround akin to an Aaron Judge-like surge. The alternative option, suggesting a decision by the trade deadline, indicates a more patient approach and garnered nearly as many votes.

As the Yankees monitor Anthony Rizzo’s performance and weigh their options at first base, the fan poll highlights the growing concern around the veteran player. It suggests that a decision may be necessary soon.

As the New York Yankees contemplate benching first baseman Anthony Rizzo, they face a challenging decision on how to fill the position moving forward. Top prospect Jasson Domínguez is performing well in the minors and nearing a major league call-up, but his addition would further crowd the outfield rather than address first base.

Anthony Rizzo, player of the new york yankees

Replacing Anthony Rizzo internally poses difficulties. DJ LeMahieu could shift to first base, opening third for Oswaldo Cabrera, yet neither player is outplaying the first baseman. Moreover, no minor league prospects are ready to step into the role, complicating the decision.

Exploring the trade market appears to be the most viable option. However, the pool of sellers is limited due to the addition of the third Wild Card and the competitive nature of the National League. Nonetheless, teams like the Padres, who acquired Luis Arráez, and the Dodgers, who tried to bolster their lineup with Cavan Biggio, demonstrate that transactions are possible.

For now, Anthony Rizzo retains his spot at first base. The Yankees do not require him to replicate his early 2022 performance when he frequently carried the offense. Instead, they need him to be a consistent, reliable contributor as they navigate the season ahead.

Anthony Rizzo makes progress after sitting out

Anthony Rizzo, player of the new york yankees

New York Yankees first baseman Anthony Rizzo, benched for the series finale against the Los Angeles Dodgers on June 9, remains confident in his ability to contribute offensively. Despite batting .224 and enduring a 1-for-29 slump at the time, he believed he was on the verge of a turnaround, even if the results weren’t immediately visible.

After sitting out another game on June 10 and going 0-for-5 in Kansas City the next day, Anthony Rizzo has recently shown signs of improvement. Heading into Saturday’s game against the Boston Red Sox, he had gone 4-for-9 with a home run and three RBIs over his previous three games.

Yankees manager Aaron Boone noted Anthony Rizzo’s progress, highlighting that even after his benching, the player was making solid contact, though initially resulting in groundouts. Boone observed that the first baseman’s pitch selection, tempo, and approach in the batter’s box improved in subsequent games, leading to better outcomes.

“He’s moving the needle,” the skipper said on Friday. “Even going back to the first game after the off days where he didn’t get any [hits], it was a few off the barrel, albeit on the ground. The next day, better takes, moving slower in the box, not as rushed and getting some results.”

Yankees' Anthony Rizzo makes a defensive error at the game against the Los Angeles Angels, Tuesday, May 28, 2024, in Anaheim, Calif.

In Friday’s 8-1 victory over Boston, Anthony Rizzo recorded his first multi-hit game of the month, including an RBI single, a walk, and a strikeout. He reiterated his confidence, emphasizing that he felt close to breaking out of his slump and was focused on creating good opportunities to get hits.

The Yankees would welcome a resurgence from Anthony Rizzo, whose overall numbers (.228/.289/.347, 8 HR, 28 RBI) and quality of contact have raised questions about his future as the starting first baseman. Speculation suggests the team might seek a corner infielder before the July 30 trade deadline.

For now, Anthony Rizzo has a chance to prove he still has more to offer. His recent performance is a positive step, with Boone acknowledging the progress as something for him to build on, describing it as a “nice few days” for the veteran.

“It feels good. I felt like I was close,” the first baseman said on Friday. “I still feel close. Just want to keep giving myself good opportunities to get hits.”

What do you think? Leave your comment below.

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One thought on “Most fans believe Anthony Rizzo’s Yankees future bleak

  1. Rizzo coming back in 2025 at this point, is almost at 0%, just based on his salary, his own play, & the kids they have in AAA. Who knows what will happen between now and the end of the season?

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