In his first game as a member of the New York Yankees, Billy Butler has already commenced his impact on the pennant race.
Despite dessert not being exactly what the New York Yankees had in mind, one of the positives to take from Thursday night was how delicious the breakfast was.
Billy Butler, aka “Country Breakfast,” was signed by New York to provide the offense with a relatively reliable bat against left-handers. For a team that ranks 22 in batting average against southpaws, they could certainly use an addition like Butler.
“It’s been a whirlwind day,” Butler told the New York Daily News. “Got here during BP; basically just got prepared for the game. I’m just excited to be here to help out the team.”
He certainly helped, alright.
Just hours after arriving at Fenway Park, Butler was penciled in as the DH, the number five hitter, and drove in two runs during the Yankees’ 7-5 loss. The 260-pound righty hit a sac-fly in the first inning scorched an RBI single in the third.
He finished his Yankees’ debut by going 1-for-3 with two RBI and a run scored. Not bad, at all.
— New York Yankees (@Yankees) September 16, 2016
General manager Brian Cashman inked Butler to a deal that will probably last just until the end of the 2016 campaign. Also note, since he was not on the roster on September 1, he will not be eligible for postseason play if the Yankees were to earn a spot.
This deal is nothing further than a short-term effort to improve a lineup which ventures the idea of adding a meaningful burst of production for the postseason.
“I think it’s trying to catch lightning in a bottle,” manager Joe Girardi also told the Daily News. “I watched his at-bats the last couple of weeks. To me, they’ve been pretty good. If he gives you those at-bats, you’re going to feel good about what he does.”
According to MLB.com, New York is set to face two lefties in the remaining three games in Boston and two more in Tampa. They are set to face six left-handed pitchers over their next ten games.
Hopefully for New York, like in Beantown on Thursday, his career .299/.381/.491 slash line against left-handers will continue to shine while he’s sporting a Yankees’ uniform.
Despite his stellar debut, however, a disheartened loss took place shortly after. With the Yankees up 5-2 in the ninth inning, Dellin Betances surrendered four earned runs including a walk-off three-run blast by Hanley Ramirez.
So, unfortunately for Billy Butler, his Yankee debut was one to neglect thanks to that dreadful ninth inning.
However, the newest DH showed that he is more than capable of doing what his team needs the most, which is to implement a right-handed presence in a lineup that has missed one for a majority of the season.
Christian Kouroupakis covers the New York Yankees for ESNY. Interact with him and view his daily work by “liking” his facebook page and follow him on Twitter. All statistics are courtesy of Baseball Reference.com unless otherwise noted. Don’t hesitate to shoot him an email with any questions, criticisms, or concerns.