Giancarlo Stanton is known as an avid world traveler during the off-season, and he may check one more foreign country off his list this winter.
But the Yankees slugger will also be visiting a less impressive destination: the laboratory.
Coming off a season in which he hit a career-low .191 with 24 home runs and a career-low .695 OPS, Stanton is entering an important offseason where he will make the necessary adjustments to become an impact player again. He also bats.
“There’s going to be a lot of changes,” Stanton said on the final day of the regular season. “I’ve already talked about how bad this year has been, so I won’t go into that any further. But there’s going to be a lot going on in the lab in the offseason.”
Asked about details, Stanton said, “Everything will be considered.” He didn’t think a major overhaul would be necessary. [tweaks], but the correct one. ”
“It’s a lot of movies and there’s a lot of thought process in it,” he said. “What was my thought process for a lot of parts of the movie and how does it fit in with other years, other good times, bad times, etc. Just have a good plan for next year. ”
At 33 years old, he can still light up Statcast like few others. He had the eighth-highest average exit velocity in the majors this season (93.3 mph). However, Stanton often couldn’t make contact or convert his strong hits into results.
That was especially true since he usually occupied the cleanup spot in a batting lineup that struggled even around him. But the Yankees still owe him $98 million over the next four years, and Stanton has a no-trade clause, so they desperately want him to perform at least close to his old self.
“It was obviously a disappointing result for G,” manager Aaron Boone said. “I absolutely believe he still has the potential to be the presence we need in the middle of our lineup. He’s going to be one of the players that has to have a really tough winter. He and I have already talked about it and have some thoughts. But I believe he is absolutely there to be the element we need. He believes that He’s there, he knows it, and I think he’s very focused on making sure he’s the player we need next year.”
Also, how he was doing on the bases, it looked like his legs were taking a toll from putting strain on his lower body in the past, or even preventing it from happening. His slow gait hurt the Yankees at times, and his average sprint speed of 24.4 feet per second was the sixth-slowest mark in the majors (min. 100 appearances), often making it seem like he was struggling to run. .
Mr. Boone indicated that he and Mr. Stanton had discussed making physical changes to address this, but neither party would provide details.
“Certainly he has strong opinions about it and I think he has the right mindset and the right focus,” Boone said.
Way back in spring training, there was talk of Stanton playing right field and Aaron Judge occasionally playing left field at Yankee Stadium to free up the DH slot. Of course, that never materialized as Harrison Bader was already injured by Opening Day, but Judge only got more opportunities to play center.
Stanton got off to a solid start at the bat, starting five of the first ten games in right field. However, by April 16, he was placed on the six-week injured list with a hamstring strain.
Still, Judge had an interesting idea when he said he still believes better days are ahead for Stanton.
“Just giving him a chance to stay in the outfield a little bit more and keep him moving, I think that’s really the biggest thing,” Judge said Sunday. “I’ve been playing DH the last few days, so it’s tough coming back from just sitting on the bench.” [to] Hitting. He’s not really in the game as much as he is playing defense. So if there’s a way to mix him up in the outfield a little bit more and keep him moving, I think that’s going to help him. ”