NEW YORK — DJ LeMahieu spent most of his spring preparing to serve as the Yankees’ second baseman, but 13 games into the schedule, manager Aaron Boone has shredded that blueprint.
“I think [LeMahieu] is going to get a lot of looks, a lot of time there,” Boone said. “Luke is on the horizon and making really strong progress, so I’m excited about where he’s at. But I think you could expect to see [LeMahieu] a lot there in the near future.”
Last year’s Major League home run leader, Voit underwent surgery to repair a torn left meniscus in late March and aims to rejoin the Yankees by the end of May. Voit was cleared this week to resume indoor fielding drills and could soon hit off a tee.
Bruce was added to the Yankees’ roster after Voit decided to undergo the procedure, but the three-time All-Star has scuffled on both sides of the ball. Bruce has collected four hits in 34 at-bats (.118) and whiffed on several scoops that resulted in throwing errors charged to infielders.
Asked what Bruce’s role on the team will be, Boone replied: “We’ll see. Right now, he’s not in the lineup obviously again today. I’m probably a little more committed right now to DJ and Rougy out there, and so we’ll just have to see.”
Then the morning comes
With about 12 hours to digest the Yankees’ 8-2 loss to the Rays that generated an angry clubhouse address, Boone said Saturday that he remained “pissed off” by his club’s sluggish start to the season. With eight losses through 13 games, the Yankees entered Saturday with the American League’s worst record.
“As far as the big picture and where I think we’re going, I’m still as confident as ever that we’ll work our way out of this and get rolling here eventually,” Boone said. “It’s always frustrating when you’re going through a tough time. But that’s also part of being a Major Leaguer, and part of the 162-game season is that adversity is going to show up for you.”
Sunday’s starter Gerrit Cole said Boone’s postgame address hit the mark.
“I’ve certainly been reamed out by a few managers in my day,” Cole said. “It’s pretty par for the course from what I’ve seen in my experience in the big leagues. I think the players listened to him and I think it was impactful.”
• The Yankees’ 147 strikeouts entering play Saturday were the most through the first 13 games in franchise history (previous: 146, by the 2018 Yankees). They were the second most by any team in Major League history, behind the ’20 Reds (149).
• LeMahieu’s 23-game hitting streak vs. the Rays snapped on Friday. Over the streak, which began on May 18, 2019, LeMahieu batted .310 (31-for-100) with six homers and 15 RBIs.
This date in Yankees history
April 17, 1951: Mickey Mantle made his Major League debut in a 5-0 victory over the Red Sox, notching his first hit with a sixth-inning RBI single off Bill Wight. The date also marked Bob Sheppard’s first day as Yankee Stadium’s public address announcer.