New York Yankees outfielder Giancarlo Stanton is happy to be back with his brothers in arms. But his main fight could be with the fans.
“It’s been a long time. It feels longer than it has been, for me,” Stanton told ESPN’s Coley Harvey. “The boys have been fun to watch while I’ve been gone, so it’s going to be good to file in and battle.”
The Bombers fans who rewarded Stanton’s two-strikeout, 0-for-4 return performance with Bronx cheers hope he carries a more lethal bat into the next skirmish. For what it’s worth, though, Yankees manager Aaron Boone is confident his slugger will rediscover his powerful stroke posthaste.
“He’s still kind of finding his way and finding his timing, and he’ll get there,” Boone told NJ.com’s Randy Miller. “Yeah, he’s just working his way back into kind of finding that timing.”
Stanton tore his left bicep on Apr. 1, an injury that snowballed into a nearly three-month absence. Before he hit the IL, the 2017 NL MVP had just two singles and twice as many Ks in three games.
The 29-year-old started a minor-league rehab assignment on Jun. 13 and quickly convinced the Yanks to activate him. He destroyed single- and triple-A pitchers with five homers in 21 plate appearances.
Giancarlo Stanton absolutely demolished this baseball pic.twitter.com/5lKDqFfoqR
— Baseball Bros (@BaseballBros) June 15, 2019
However, he also struck out 10 times, so don’t expect a major downturn in whiffs from the dude at the MLB level.
New York is also looking forward to plugging Stanton’s power-hitting comrade Aaron Judge back into the lineup any day now. Judge homered in triple-A rehab game on Tuesday, to go along with two free passes.
The Bombers wrap up a four-game set against the Tampa Bay Rays in the Bronx on Thursday afternoon. Stanton isn’t in the starting lineup, but he could always pinch hit.
Tune in to find out whether his mighty swing finds the seats, inspires more derision from disgusted onlookers, or rides the pine.