Mike Tauchman was a bright spot on the Yankees last year, but he has been unplayable this year and it makes you wonder what happened to him?
The Yankees had many surprising players step up last year during the next man up parts of the 2019 season. Players such as Cameron Maybin, Mike Ford, Thairo Estrada, and Clint Frazier stepped up big time for the Yankees when they needed it the most. There is one player that became a staple in the lineup towards the summer months of last season and that was Mike Tauchman. Sadly this year Tauchman has been unable to recapture any of the magic he had last year and it pops the question. What has happened to Mike Tauchman?
Before we get into his 2020 season we must talk about just how productive Tauchman was in 2019. The first half of that season Tauchman was bad, slashing .228/.318/.404 with 26 hits, eight doubles, four home runs, and 17 RBIs and that resulted in him being sent down and once he was called back up he took off. In the second half of 2019, Tauchman slashed .315/.395/.582 with 46 hits, ten doubles, nine home runs, and 30 RBIs. He became a driving force towards the bottom of the lineup and his great defense put him in the conversation of getting a postseason start in left. Sadly, his season was cut short due to a torn calf but big things were expected coming into 2020.
At the start of summer camp, Tauchman was hitting well and showing the fans that 2019 may have not been a fluke. The hype was there for Tauchman once the outfielders started to go down again and once again he had a chance to show the Yankees he was the real deal. He has been unable to recapture the magic this year and has been downright terrible. So far this year, Tauchman is slashing .224/.343/.300 with 22 hits(90 at-bats), five doubles, zero home runs, and 11 RBIs.
Now you may look at that and say that it is still a decent year, but the stats make him look a lot better than he has actually been this year. Tauchman has lost all of the power he had last year and his only hits are coming from bloopers and his speed is turning some of them into doubles. He was sent down last year because he couldn’t hit a fastball and once he came back up he got a lot better. Overall in 2019, Tauchman had a .286 average and slugged .537 against fastballs.
This year, Tauchman has looked even worse against the fastball as he owns a .184 average and .245 slugging against the fastball this year. He’s missing every single fastball down the middle, even ones in the low 90’s he is missing. He also was late on a 67 MPH fastball against a position player. It is at the point where Tauchman is starting to show signs of being a fluke and if it weren’t for the short season and injury woes, he would be in the minors right now.