On opening day, the New York Yankees started with a blast by shutting out the San Francisco Giants 5-0. It did not take long for unanimous reigning MLBbro MVP, Aaron Judge to bring the “Home Run Court” back into session with a towering shot in the first inning.
According to Elias Sports Bureau, with this home run, Judge added another historical list to his long list of accomplishments. With that long shot, Aaron Judge is now only the third player in this century to homer in his first plate appearance of a season after leading the majors in home runs the previous season.
The other two on this list? Future Hall of Famer, Albert Pujols and MLBbro Giancarlo Stanton who was (1-for-4) in the Opening Day win.
But this is where the story begins.
Former MVP Stanton Is Overshadowed By Aaron Judge
With the emergence of Aaron Judge, Stanton has gone from one of the can’t miss superstars to being an afterthought on his own team at times. With vast accomplishments over his career, it could be one of the bigger mysteries of the upcoming season.
- In the 2022 season, he hit 31 home runs with 78 RBI while battling injuries and slumps at the plate.
- He’s the odds-on favorite to join the 500 HR club if he can stay healthy.
- With 59 homers back in 2017 with the Marlins, our MLBbro has shown the ability to flirt with the 60 HR plateau like his fellow MLBbro, Aaron Judge.
Judge-Stanton Best Bro Bomber Duo In MLB
These two MLBbros are home run movements by themselves, but they are a real force offensively put together as far as the New York Yankees are concerned. The team has a dominant 28-2 record when the two both recorded home runs in the same game. Include four more instances in the postseason and a Yankees fan could easily declare a World Series run if Giancarlo’s consistency can catch up with Judge’s.
Finally, with a 25-game stretch that gave him the highest HR/AB ratio in MLB postseason history with 11 homers and 23 RBI, why is Giancarlo Stanton not featured with Aaron Judge much like Mark McGwire and Jose Canseco…”The Bash Brothers”?
How can our MLBbro get back to the lovefest that he had in his first game?
Giancarlo Stanton homers twice in his first game as a Yankee pic.twitter.com/AaFpKbs65M
— Dom (@BronxBmbrz) February 19, 2023
Keys To Success For Giancarlo Stanton
There’s an old sport saying…” The greatest ability for a player is availability”.
For our MLBbro, it has to start here. In the five years, Stanton has been in Yankees pinstripes, he has missed 260 out 708 games. The timing of his injuries has debatably hurt World Series runs particularly in 2019 and 2022.
Even when Giancarlo plays through the injuries, his rhythm is thrown off, particularly in the postseason. Both Stanton and the Yankees benefit when he is healthy.
2. Understand that even though he’s a slugger, place the bat on the ball first. Homers will come.
The New York Yankees are all about the long ball and last year’s numbers illustrate that. With Judge’s record-setting total of 62, the team led the American League with 254. But the Yanks only finished tied for 16th in total hits with 1308. When the long ball stopped working in the postseason loss to the Houston Astros, so did the offense.
Before the clinching loss, Stanton talked about putting the ball in play and overlooking his thirst for high impact homers that allowed the team’s batting average to bottom out in the .130 range.
3. Now he has to practice what he preaches this season.
Stanton did not have a homer throughout spring training for the first time since 2012. His hitting splits of .238/.273/.286 will do little to quiet the baseball pundits who look at his robust contract through 2027 and hint at a player in decline. Despite having no homers, the MLBbro still had the hardest hit ball of any others tracked.
His plate discipline needs to improve to have the impact of his MLBbro counterpart Judge. Aaron has the ability to wait for the right pitch. Giancarlo is subject to chasing sliders out of the zone. Pitchers know to stay on the outside corner which has led to numerous strikeouts. Make no mistake that Giancarlo Stanton is a superstar. He was voted to last year’s All-Star game and showed his massive power hitting with a homer to win the midseason affair.
But the baseball media, particularly in New York, is a “What have you done for me lately?” entity. Our MLBbro has to provide production in Yankees pinstripes on a consistent basis to avoid being buried in Aaron Judge’s shadow.