NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 12: Luke Voit #59 of the New York Yankees hits a walkoff single against the Baltimore Orioles during the tenth inning at Yankee Stadium on September 12, 2020 in the Bronx borough of New York City. The Yankees won 2-1.
(Photo by Adam Hunger/Getty Images)

New York Yankees first baseman Luke Voit is making a strong case for consideration in the 2020 AL MVP race.

The New York Yankees have asked a lot of Luke Voit in 2020. With seemingly the entire roster once again on the injured list, Voit was relied upon to carry the offense for much of the season.

And he has delivered.

Voit hit his MLB leading 19th home run on Wednesday night against the Toronto Blue Jays. He’s slashing .280/.341/.643 on the season with a .983 OPS.

And with the return of Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton to the lineup, Voit will reap the rewards of that duo’s intimidating presence.

Unfortunately, it’s unlikely that Voit will actually win the award. Jose Abreu is the likely favorite and rightfully so. Abreu trails Voit by three in the home run race but is slashing .327/.367/.629 with a .996 OPS. The White Sox first baseman is leading MLB in hits, RBIs, and total bases.

At this stage in the season, Voit likely doesn’t have the time to catch up to that production, despite whatever boost he gets from the improvements to the Yankees lineup.

But the important thing is that Voit has established himself as one of the best hitters in the league. The Yankees asked him to carry the offense and he delivered. Nearly single-handedly, he kept the Yankees in the playoff picture despite the overflowing injured list.

He may not win the MVP, but his presence means the Yankees have four MVP-caliber bats at the top of the lineup come playoff time.

Those are tough waters for an opposing pitcher to navigate. When you have to get through DJ LeMahieu and Aaron Judge just to get to Luke Voit, don’t be surprised to see him do damage.

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