New York Yankees fans had high expectations for Giancarlo Stanton before the 2018 MLB season. However, the former Miami Marlins superstar has yet to make a significant impact for the Yankees and is actually in an ugly slump to start the season.
Yankees manager Aaron Boone is reportedly considering a roster shakeup that could drop Stanton down in the batting order. While moving down in the order appears to be the logical choice at this point, Jesse Spector of Locked On Yankees believes that Boone should consider moving Stanton up to the No. 2 spot.
Aaron Judge currently occupies the No. 2 spot in the batting order. Spector said that the Yankees should let Stanton take the spot of Judge instead of dropping him down. Flipping the order of Judge and Stanton could give the Yankees better lineup protection.
Spector said that protecting Stanton with Judge would give the former better pitches to hit, which could eventually help the 2017 NL Most Valuable Player get going for the Yankees and overcome his early-season struggles. The 28-year-old superstar is hitting 0.197 with three home runs and 10 RBIs.
Moving down to No. 3 is unlikely to become an issue for Judge as well. Spector pointed out that Judge is “perfectly capable of moving” after starting 62 games at No. 3, 30 games at No. 5, 28 games at No. 2, 12 games at No. 6, six games at No. 7, and four games at No. 8 last season.
But while Spector thinks that a Judge-Stanton swap would work, Randy Miller of NJ Advance Media believes that the Yankees should drop the four-time All-Star to the No. 5 spot. Miller placed Didi Gregorius at No. 3, followed by Gary Sanchez at No. 4. Gregorius is having a strong start, while Sanchez is also struggling, but Miller thinks he is a better option for the fourth spot than Stanton at this point of the season.
Miller added that he is aware of the talks about dropping Stanton to sixth or seventh in the batting order, but he insisted it does not make sense at this point because 16 games are such a small sample. He pointed out that Stanton is known as a slow starter, who usually gets into his rhythm in late April or early May.
It is worth noting that the California native also struggled early last season, but he was eventually named NL MVP last season. He finished the regular season hitting 0.281 with career-best numbers of 59 home runs and 132 RBIs in 159 games for the Marlins last year.