There is some moderate consternation among Yankees fans about what the Yankees will do with Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera and Joe Girardi this offseason, seeing as all three of them will no longer be under contract once the year ends. Sure, everyone knows that all three will almost certainly be back, but the details are a bit fuzzy and, given the ages of Rivera and Jeter, the negotiations could be kind of delicate. It’s not really a question of “if” they’ll come back but “how.”
The “how” for at least one of those guys is clearing up, however, as Mariano Rivera told Joel Sherman of the New York Post recently that he would accept an Andy Pettitte-style one-year deal to come back. You figure that he’d take a series of them, actually, with the Yankees continuing to offer them for as long as Rivera remains effective. Which, at present, seems will be forever.
Probably good news for Yankees fans. Everyone knows that Jeter will get a big deal that, at the end of the day, will probably be for too much money. No one really cares about that actually. Rivera was probably a source of slightly greater concern inasmuch as it was within the realm of the possible that he’d demand multiple years and the Yankees would balk, at least initially.
As of now, that seems to be a moot point.
Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez has wasted no time acclimating himself to major league competition. Since getting called back up on August 3, Sanchez has smacked nine homers and driven in 16 runs in a span of 18 games. In fact, since August 3, no hitter has homered more than Sanchez and only Charlie Blackmon and Brian Dozier have matched him, Katie Sharp of River Ave Blues notes.
One of those homers came in Wednesday afternoon’s game against the Mariners at Safeco Field. It was a first-inning blast off of Hisashi Iwakuma, quickly giving the Yankees a 1-0 lead. They would go on to win 5-0. Sanchez finished 2-for-3 with a pair of intentional walks, a double, and the homer.
Some more fun facts about Sanchez, courtesy Sharp:
- Sanchez is the first Yankee in club history with nine home runs in his first 21 career games [Link]
- Sanchez is the third American League player in the last 100 years to hit at least nine home runs in his first 21 career games, joining George Scott and Alvin Davis [Link]
- Sanchez and Joe DiMaggio are the only Yankees with 15 or more extra-base hits in their first 21 career games [Link]
Sanchez was considered the fifth-best prospect in the Yankees’ minor league system, according to MLB Pipeline. In the majors, he’s carrying a .389/.450/.847 triple-slash line in 79 plate appearances. He has also thrown out five of seven would-be base-stealers.
American swimmer Katie Ledecky, fresh off of winning four gold medals at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio De Janiero, Brazil, was in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday night to throw out the ceremonial first pitch prior to the Nationals’ game against the Orioles.
As NHL.com’s Katie Brown notes, Ledecky’s favorite player is Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper, who was on the field with her. So what did she make him do? Hold all of her medals while she threw out the first pitch.
Harper has his fair share of hardware, including a Rookie of the Year Award and an MVP Award, but no gold medals. For shame.