This postseason, the New York Yankees are 4-0 when Giancarlo Stanton gets into the game, and 0-3 when he does not. The lack of Stanton’s bat in the lineup isn’t the only reason the Yankees are down 3-1 to the Astros in the ALCS, but it’d certainly help to have him at DH instead of Edwin Encarnacion. With the Yankees facing elimination in tonight’s Game 5, that’s exactly what’s going to happen: Stanton, who has been out since Game 1, will return and bat fourth in the order.
Stanton featured in just 18 games in the regular season because of a variety of injuries. Despite returning at the end of September, he found himself knocked out again by a quad injury suffered while running to first in the Yankees’ Game 1 win over Houston. As the Astros’ lead grew in the series, his recovery has been monitored closely. On Thursday before Game 4, manager Aaron Boone said that Stanton was “pretty close” to being able to play DH.
Sixty percent doesn’t sound encouraging, and it’s a safe bet that Stanton would be nowhere near playing if the Yankees’ season wasn’t on the line. For a better read on the quad situation, take a look at Stanton doing some practice runs on the bases Thursday before Game 4. You, the lawyer in his late 30s reading this right now, could beat him in a race.
Well, if Stanton hits a dinger, he won’t have to worry too much about running. Is there any precedent for someone with a bad leg doing that in a crucial playoff game?