By: Noah Wright
D. Ross Cameron-USA TODAY Sports
Luke Voit should be every Yankees fan’s favorite player right now. He single handedly solved the first base problem The Yankees were suffering from all this year, even though he was never predicted to do so. After a deadline trade with The St. Louis Cardinals that sent Voit from St. Louis to The Yankees, and Chasen Shreve to The Cards, Voit has been crushing the ball. In his first 148 plate appearances in pinstripes, Voit batted .333/.405/.689 with 14 home runs (14 home runs! That’s a home run every 10.6 plate appearances), 33 RBI’s, and a 187 wRC+. His ISO was also an outstanding .305. But once the season officially ends for The Yankees, should they go out and pursue a replacement?
Well to start, I don’t know if I’d rely on Luke Voit to replicate the season he’s having now. Now obviously, a .605 slugging percentage and .305 ISO is unsustainable. But my question is will he sustain a decent amount of success to be productive? Let’s say can he keep a batting line around .270/.350/.450 with 20-25 home runs, and a wRC+ of about 115 throughout an entire season. If you ask me, maybe but unlikely. Voit was never a big power hitter in the minors. His highest home run total was 19 in 2016 in a full season in double-A. However, he did show greater promise with 13 home runs, and a .565 (and similar overall numbers to this season) in 2017 with The Cards’ Triple-A team. That was met with a call-up to the majors, and he didn’t do so great. In his first 124 plate appearances of his career, Voit batted .246/.306/.430 with 4 home runs, and 18 RBI’s.
But on the other hand, I’d rather not see the yankees put $15+ million into a first base replacement. While I still think Luke Voit can’t be a monster in the line-up, I do think he can be good enough to land a platoon role. If The Yanks do decide on doing that, there’s a few good options they could go after. On the free agent market there’s Matt Adams, who they could acquire for less than $8 million, and on the trading market, The Phillies will likely shop Justin Bour, since he probably won’t fit into their corner options. They even have an internal option in Greg Bird, as long as he can stay healthy enough to play.
I think the best option for The Yankees is to find a platoon or an insurance option at first base. Luke Voit is having an amazing season, but I just don’t think most of it is sustainable. However if The Yankees decide to go with just Voit, and only Voit, with so many monsters in that line-up, they could risk it, and hope that Voit can be a productive major leaguer.