The second half of the major league baseball season is here. How will the Yankees fare? Let’s make three bold predictions.
The 2019 all-star break is in the books, and it’s time for the second half of the season. For the New York Yankees, the first half could not have gone any better despite several injuries.
New York enters the break with a record of 57-31. That is the best record in the American Leauge and the least amount of losses of any team in baseball. With their impressive start, the Yankees have a 6.5 game lead over the second-place Tampa Bay Rays and a nine-game lead over the third-place Boston Red Sox.
Thus, all the Yankees need to do is stay steady, and their six-year division title drought will end. Can they do it? Will they add players to help them seal the deal?
Let’s make some predictions on the second half of the season.
1. Yankees Will Trade For Trevor Bauer
Despite a recent surge that has them in the thick of the postseason race the Cleveland Indians know they need to sell pieces.
They are a small market team that knows they don’t have the firepower to compete with the top teams in the American League and that their window to deliver a championship is closing. Thus, it seems despite the fact they’d be in the playoffs if the season ended today that they will sell.
There’s a great chance the Yankees will take advantage of this and grab starting pitcher Trevor Bauer. Bauer has posted a solid 3.61 ERA in 20 starts this season and in 2018 pitched to a stellar 2.21 ERA. Bauer is battle-tested as he’s pitched in the world series and three postseasons making him the perfect candidate to handle the New York pressure.
By giving the Indians, a much-needed outfielder such as their former first-round draft pick Clint Frazier the Yankees should be able to get the deal done.
2. Edwin Encarnacion Gary Sanchez & Luke Voit will all hit 35 or more home runs
There’s no lineup with more pop in the majors than the Yankees. Every batter on the Yankees roster can hit the ball out of the ballpark every time he steps to the plate as the Bombers have six players with double-digit home runs and two in Aaron Judge and Aaron Hicks who are knocking on the door after returning from injuries.
It’s Edwin Encarnacion (25) and Gary Sanchez (24) who lead the team heading into the second half. Those two will easily finish over 35 long-balls on the season if they stay healthy and can easily hit 40 or more.
However, it’s not crazy to think Luke Voit will also hit 35 or more as well. Voit entered the all-star break with 17 long-balls and should be returning from a brief IL stint as soon as Friday. Thus, if he stays on his pace and proves to be healthy, he should reach the 35 home run club.
3. Yankees Will Finish 104-58, Win AL East
The Yankees are on pace to win 104 games, and that’s exactly where I see them finishing. They’re keeping a steady win pace and are only going to get stronger as players such as Voit and Giancarlo Stanton return.
Despite a sizable lead Boston still should be seen as the Yankees biggest threat in the AL East due to their experience of winning a championship but the Bombers should still cruise to a division victory and have the postseason run through the Bronx.