The Yankees have lost seven straight and have ceded first place in the AL East to the Red Sox, and right now the club seems powerless to change what isn’t working.
First baseman Chris Carter, filling in for an injured Greg Bird, has continued to flirt with a sub-.200 batting average, and his poor play has featured prominently in some recent losses. In the Yankees’ seven-game slump, Carter has four hits, one walk, and 14 strikeouts in 25 plate appearances. In the Yankees’ 3-2 loss against the Angels on June 14, he dropped a routine throw to first that ended up costing his team a run.
During Tuesday’s 8-3 loss to the Angels, a grounder rolled under his glove to lead off the second inning, and the Angels went on to score two unearned runs in the frame. (The Yankees would go on to tie the game at three before Tyler Clippard bled three runs in the seventh.)
It’s been rough stretch for the Yankees and particularly for Carter, who was pegged as a savvy if perhaps unnecessary offseason signing. He’s needed now, though, and manager Joe Girardi doesn’t seem to happy with how Carter is playing. After last night’s loss, he was asked if Carter would remain the starting first baseman for the foreseeable future. He didn’t have much to say about the issue:
“That’s what we have,” [Joe] Girardi said.
Carter isn’t the only problem the Yankees have, of course. Their pitching leaves something to be desired and they’re dealing with injuries, even to their prospects. The team was a pleasant surprise at the beginning of the season, given that FanGraphs had marked them down for 84.8 expected wins and a distant second place in the division, but the power of Aaron Judge boosted the squad as a whole. Judge can’t play everywhere, however; he’s only one (extremely large) person.