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Royals series preview: New York Yankees

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Aaron Judge is coming

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Houston Astros v New York Yankees
A mountain of a man
Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

Thanks in part to the Royals’ sweep of the Baltimore Orioles this past weekend, the New York Yankees come to town leading the American League East by half a game, owning a 22-13 record. Much of this is due to their high-powered offense, currently ranked third in runs scored.

The game times and matchups will look like this:

  • Tuesday, May 16, 7:15 PM CDT - CC Sabathia (L) vs. Jason Hammel
  • Wednesday, May 17, 7:15 PM CDT - Michael Pineda vs. Jason Vargas (L)
  • Thursday, May 18, 7:15 PM CDT - Jordan Montgomery (L) vs. Danny Duffy (L)

Yankees at Royals pitching matchups

Pitcher G IP K K% BB BB% ERA FIP xFIP SIERA fWAR rWAR
Pitcher G IP K K% BB BB% ERA FIP xFIP SIERA fWAR rWAR
CC Sabathia (L) 7 39.0 27 15.3 17 9.7 5.77 5.17 4.76 4.91 0.1 -0.2
Jason Hammel 7 34.2 31 18.8 16 9.7 5.97 4.37 5.20 4.75 0.3 -0.4
Michael Pineda 7 41.1 50 30.3 6 3.6 3.27 3.62 2.45 2.56 0.7 1.1
Jason Vargas (L) 7 44.2 39 22.9 8 4.7 1.01 2.17 3.72 3.63 1.6 2.3
Jordan Montgomery (L) 6 34.1 33 22.5 15 10.2 4.19 3.63 4.74 4.37 0.7 0.4
Danny Duffy (L) 8 50.2 35 16.7 17 8.1 3.38 3.33 4.68 4.72 1.1 1.1

While CC Sabathia is a shell of his former self, both Jordan Montgomery and Michael Pineda have pitched well thus far this year. Pineda particularly has pitched like an ace, even if his ERA is a little high for what he has done on the mound. The Yankees also just placed The Abuser of Women on the DL, so they are without their high-dollar closer.

Yankees position players

Player Pos PA HR R RBI SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA wRC+ fWAR rWAR
Player Pos PA HR R RBI SB AVG OBP SLG wOBA wRC+ fWAR rWAR
Aaron Judge RF 138 14 30 29 2 .316 .420 .744 .476 212 2.1 2.4
Aaron Hicks (S) OF 106 6 22 16 6 .317 .457 .585 .443 189 1.7 1.5
Brett Gardner (L) LF 140 7 26 14 5 .289 .381 .521 .388 150 1.6 2.0
Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF 127 4 17 12 8 .275 .358 .413 .340 117 1.0 0.8
Starlin Castro 2B 153 7 26 25 0 .338 .373 .531 .388 150 1.0 1.4
Chase Headley (S) 3B 139 3 21 15 4 .260 .345 .423 .336 114 0.8 0.4
Matt Holliday DH 124 7 16 24 1 .279 .387 .529 .392 153 0.8 0.7
Didi Gregorius (L) SS 68 1 5 10 1 .297 .324 .391 .310 95 0.7 0.3
Ronald Torreyes IF 90 1 7 14 0 .295 .303 .386 .298 87 0.4 0.3
Gary Sánchez C 58 2 6 7 0 .260 .362 .400 .340 117 0.1 -0.1
Austin Romine C 75 2 7 10 0 .261 .293 .377 .289 80 0.1 0.4
Chris Carter 1B 75 1 7 8 0 .200 .293 .308 .271 68 -0.1 -0.2

Fueled in large part by Aaron Judge’s breakout campaign, the Yankees position players are the second most valuable unit in baseball, totaling 9.1 fWAR. As a team, they are slashing .270/.353/.456 with a .351 wOBA and 124 wRC+. To put that into perspective, the Royals’ SLG is only .004 higher than the Yankees’ OBP. Sure, some of this is due to the disparate environs that each team calls home, but that hardly explains it all away. Despite these not being the Yankees of old, there is a reason these Yankees have the third-best record in baseball.

All stats courtesy of FanGraphs and Baseball Reference.

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Poll

How will the Royals fare against the Yankees?

This poll is closed

  • 10%
    Royals sweep
    (27 votes)
  • 44%
    Royals take two of three
    (120 votes)
  • 32%
    Yankees take two of three
    (88 votes)
  • 12%
    Yankees sweep
    (33 votes)
268 votes total Vote Now