Why Speed Is the Key to a Successful 2022 Season
By Derek McAdam
January 14, 2022
Remember when the Yankees had speedsters such as Greg Allen and Tyler Wade who would provide a threat on the bases? Now that both of those players are gone, the Yankees are only down to one player that has decent speed on the bases in Gleyber Torres.
With these crucial losses and the uncertainty of Brett Gardner’s future in the Bronx, the Yankees are now a non-threatening team on the bases. Barring signing or trading for several players that have speed, this is not going to change.
Something worth mentioning about Allen and Wade was that they earned lots of playing time after several injuries on the roster. While injuries are going to happen at some point during the season to several players, it is not possible to speculate who gets injured and how long they’re out.
Nonetheless, this change shifts the dynamic that the team had while the speedsters were playing every day. The offense was incredibly fun to watch and once Allen, Wade, Andrew Velasquez or anyone that had good speed got on base, it almost felt like a rally had begun.
So why do the Yankees continue to ignore this major factor? Part of it is the fact that they can’t sit players making millions of dollars every year for players that are making the league minimum. If Aaron Hicks is healthy and playing decently, he’s going to be in the lineup every day. The same goes for any other player that has a big contract.
There are going to be positions that are not going to produce fast players, such as the catcher and first baseman. And it’s also hard to have a lineup that is fast from top to bottom.
If the Yankees were able to have one or two more players in their day-to-day lineup that could be a threat on the bases, they may find that they can get a few more wins throughout the season. They cannot just rely on their power hitters to produce over a 162-game season.
The chances that the Yankees go out and find speed does not seem likely with the latest rumors, but nothing can be counted out.