Brian Cashman is well aware that there is plenty to fix this offseason after the New York Yankees missed the postseason for the first time since 2016.
The Yankees general manager, however, is struggling with what to do about outfielder Giancarlo Stanton — who he said is bound to get hurt at some point next season. In his eyes, that’s just who Stanton is now.
“We try to limit the time he’s down,” Cashman said at the general manager meetings in Arizona, . “But I’m not gonna tell you he’s gonna play every game next year because he’s not. He’s going to wind up getting hurt again more likely than not because it seems to be part of his game.”
Stanton held a career-low .191 batting average with 24 home runs and 60 RBI last season white playing in just 101 games due to a hamstring injury he sustained early in the season. He played in just 110 games during the 2022 season, where he picked up his fifth All-Star nod, due to calf and Achilles injuries, too.
The former NL MVP has had a number of lower body injuries since he won that award in 2017. He played in just 18 games during the 2019 campaign with a bicep strain and MCL injury, and then played in just 23 games during the shortened 2020 season with a hamstring injury.
It’s not just a history of his injuries that’s concerning for Cashman and the Yankees, but also how slow Stanton has been both running the bases and in the outfield at times. There was once play in August during a game against the Houston Astros where Stanton looked like he wasn’t trying hard at all to reach the plate, and was easily thrown out at home.
“It’s been something that we’ve been working through and working on for a long time without the results that we want,” Cashman said of Stanton. “So I don’t have an answer to that. I know he’s frustrated by it. We know he’s certainly better than what we saw last year.”
Though he struggled at the plate last season, both Cashman and Stanton seemed hopeful that he can fix his batting issues this offseason. If they can figure that out, Cashman said, they’ll be fine regardless of if — or, rather when — Stanton gets hurt again.
“I know that when he’s right and healthy, other than this past year, the guy’s a great hitter and has been for a long time,” he said.