Anthony Volpe will be the lead off batter tonight for the first time this season!

Twenty-four hours or nearly two years, nothing makes the heart grow fonder quite like time away from the game. For Yankees shortstop Anthony Volpe, the baseball-less void lasted just one day, although it was miserable and stomach-turning. Starting pitcher Luis Gil’s absence was much longer — 690 days, to be exact.

Both came back with a vengeance Monday in a 5-2 win over the Diamondbacks at Chase Field. One day after being sidelined with a “really bad” stomach bug, Volpe set a career best with four hits, doubling twice and driving in a run. Meanwhile, making his first start in nearly two years due to Tommy John surgery, Gil held Arizona to one run over 4 2/3 innings, flashing a triple-digit fastball and striking out six.

What Yankees' Anthony Volpe will remember (and forget) about his 1st career  homer -

“It just gets on guys,” Yankees catcher Austin Wells said of Gil’s fastball, which averaged 97.7 mph. “He’s not afraid to throw it in any count to any part of the zone to anybody. As a batter, when you’re facing a guy like that, it adds a little extra pressure to be on it. His fastball is one of the best in the game, the best on the team.”

Wells caught Gil for the first time Monday, but the Yankees’ backstop came up with Volpe and could see a star turn coming from the shortstop and former top prospect. After posting a .666 OPS in his rookie season, Volpe entered the offseason set on fixing his swing. He felt he was hanging back on his back foot too much. He sought to land more balanced, and Wells thinks things clicked for Volpe right before Spring Training started.

Yankees Are Right To Send Anthony Volpe As Leadoff Batter

Now in a better position to hit and able to cover the whole plate, nothing is getting by the young shortstop. In his first three games, Volpe went 4-for-10 with a homer and more walks (four) than strikeouts (three). Playing Monday at less than 100 percent — “one more good night” of sleep and he might be able to recharge fully, he said — Volpe roped two doubles among his four hits, reaching base each time he stepped to the plate.

Can Anthony Volpe catch up to pitch that keeps getting by?

“I just think he’s a way better hitter,” said Yankees manager Aaron Boone. “Results can be fleeting, especially this time of the year, but the fact that he is getting results and the quality of each at-bat, it’s been impressive.”

Related Posts

Our Privacy policy - © 2024 News