The right-hander threw 12 pitches that traveled 100 mph. Next up might be the Red Sox on Sunday night. I’m not scared of anybody, he said.
With a lineup just as good as its rival’s and a better rotation, Boston has every reason to believe it can win the division. Here are five of them.
Part of the success Severino and the Yankees have shared stems from how well New York’s offense has played when he pitches. He has drawn 5.21 runs per game of support, while the Yankees’ other starters have an average 4.68 runs of support.
Numbers aside, the very sight of Severino’s largely dominant performances has helped galvanize the rest of the pitching staff, occasionally sparking similar appearances from others.
This staff may not have the name recognition of Sale-Porcello-Price, but it’s still worth paying attention to as the season continues.
Manager Aaron Boone put it best: Our starting rotation, I don’t think, gets really the credit it deserves. You don’t rack up a lot of wins without having some form of consistency with our starting rotation.
Aguilar leads the majors with 10 home runs and 32 RBIs with two strikes, but first things first. Freddie Freeman will win the fan vote and deservedly so. Does Aguilar win the player vote as the backup? Given his late surge and lack of pedigree before this season, it seems that vote probably will go to Brandon Belt or Joey Votto or Anthony Rizzo or Paul Goldschmidt (although Votto, Rizzo and Goldschmidt all got off to slow starts and the player voting seems to done by mid-June or so). It’s possible Aguilar makes it as a third first baseman, although that depends on how the roster fills out once you make sure every team has a rep and so on.
In terms of WAR, Aguilar is quite a ways down the list, at 2.0 entering Thursday, ranking seventh among NL first basemen, but some of that is because he doesn’t have as much playing time. Among NL players with at least 150 PAs, he’s second in OPS only to Max Muncy, another big surprise.
Considering the Milwaukee offense is only middle of the pack, Aguilar has been huge. His Win Probability Added doesn’t rank among the league leaders, so there doesn’t appear to be evidence he has been extra-special in high-leverage situations. Still, he has turned into one of the best stories of the season, and a trip to D.C. would be a nice reward.