The New York Yankees may be struggling to win games right now, but that doesn’t erase some of the genius moves General Manager Brian Cashman has made this season.
When the Yankees needed left-handed support in the batsman’s box and a strong player who could show up at multiple points, they stumbled upon Matt Carpenter, who was playing for the Texas Rangers Triple A at the time.
Carpenter was patiently waiting to receive an offer to play at the major league level, but he was only getting triple chances, and he refused to be relegated to that level.
However, Carpenter was surprised when the best team in baseball came asking for his services. This move is clearly paying off in dividends.
The Yankees made a genius move by signing Carpenter:
Carpenter hits 352 with a 46.5% base rate and 873 deceleration percentage. He’s earned 11 homeowners this year with 24 RBIs, which feature a 25.3% strike rate and 12.6% walk rate.
“He’s taking more chances,” said Joy Foto. “I felt at times [in the past] Was satisfied with walking or difficult at bat: That was hard at bats; I saw a lot of stadiums. I don’t want to read the mind, but only share what I saw as a third party. Whereas now he seems more reckless. Good hitters are reckless.”
Carpenter was more aggressive in his technique, scoring a 46% hard hit rate and 20% barrel rate. Highest numbers in his entire career. It also posts a 25.4-degree firing angle, indicating that it has more power in baseball. It produces a 60% flight rate with a 39.3% HR/FB ratio.
When the Yankees originally acquired Carpenter, he was looking to do just about anything, from practice field batting or take baggage off the team plane. However, he has found a more widespread role as a major contributor.
“Obviously it’s not really anything similar, but people on their deathbeds wish they hadn’t taken things for granted — you get a second chance at life,” Carpenter says. “I mean, that’s what happened to me and my baseball career. I got a second chance. And every single day, the most ordinary, tired of things most people look forward to, like getting out on the field for BP, taking ground balls.”
Not only did Carpenter assist in the offensive, but he also held multiple defensive positions. This season, he has spent time on first base, third base, left field, and right field.
The most impressive aspect of Carpenter’s season so far is its adequate sample size. Carpenter played in 29 games with 87 billboard appearances, which is a solid set of numbers to showcase his production.
Carpenter has a great draw rate, which helped 11 players land on the right field, exposing the short balcony at Yankee Stadium.
The Yankees hope he can continue to perform at this pace and help them through the post-season when the pressure is on.