Reviewing Giancarlo Stanton’s 2020 Opening Day and Expectations
The New York Yankees opened up the 2020 MLB season with a 4-1 win in a shortened five-inning game against the Washington Nationals in the nation’s capital Thursday night.
Gerrit Cole made his Yankee debut after signing a lucrative nine-year, $324 million contract during the off-season. He earned his first win in pinstripes, allowing only one hit and striking out five while pitching all five innings for the Yankees.
While much of the spotlight was on the Yankee debut of Cole, Giancarlo Stanton was also making his presence on the team available with an outstanding performance, going 2-for-3 with a mammoth two-run home run in the top of the first to give the Yankees the lead.
Although his second at-bat would result in a strikeout, Stanton would make his third at-bat count by driving a long single down the right-field line to score one additional run, giving the Yankees a 4-1 lead.
Stanton’s impressive debut might be considered an overreaction by many, but it is not in the slightest. The Yankees faced off against Max Scherzer, who is still considered to be one of the best pitchers in the game, even though he will be 36 years old on Monday. The matchup against Scherzer was tough for most of the lineup, as Scherzer struck out 11 in only 5.1 innings of work.
What fans saw out of Stanton was a great start to 2020, as Stanton only managed to play in 18 games in all of the 2019 season hitting only three home runs and driving in 13. He has received a lot of criticism due to his injury history, the inability to play the outfield full-time due to his injuries and his lucrative contract.
If Stanton can give the Yankees 55 games this season and the ability to hit at least .260, the Yankees will take those stats. The main focus is to keep Stanton healthy while also contributing to a deadly Yankee lineup.