The Yankees’ 5 finest performers in 2020 in keeping with WAR
The 2020 season introduced a bit little bit of all the pieces for the Yankees: information, breakout stars, underperformers, sudden outcomes, and a Division Sequence exit in opposition to the Tampa Bay Rays, amongst a number of different issues.
Now that we’re reviewing the season, let’s see who have been one of the best performers on the Yankees in keeping with FanGraphs’ model of Wins Above Alternative, or fWAR:
DJ LeMahieu: 2.5 fWAR
For a second consecutive season, DJ LeMahieu was the Yankees’ chief in fWAR, with 2.5. And as soon as once more, he was a large asset with the bat, hitting .364/.421/.590, with a .429 wOBA and a team-leading 177 wRC+. His contributions on the basepaths (a optimistic 0.7 baserunning runs) and with the glove (-0.4 UZR, -1.0 UZR/150, 0 DRS) have been quite modest, particularly with the leather-based, however what he did within the batter’s field was greater than sufficient to guide the workforce in WAR by a substantial margin.
LeMahieu might be a free agent after the World Series, so the Yankees will lose their highest-rated participant within the final two seasons in the event that they don’t ultimately safe his return to the Bronx.
Luke Voit: 1.8 fWAR
After all, we shouldn’t charge a 60-game season the identical method as we deal with a traditional 162-game marketing campaign, however let’s give credit score the place it’s due: Luke Voit assaulted American League East pitching (and a few Nationwide League East foes, too) on his technique to a league-leading 22 house runs.
Primarily, Voit took a extra aggressive strategy and traded some walks (he had a 13.9 stroll charge in 2019 and a 7.3 mark this season) for some round-trippers. It was a worthwhile shift, one which led to a .277/.338/.610 line with a .393 wOBA and a incredible 152 wRC+.
Voit additionally made some defensive enhancements that drove his fWAR up a bit. He had optimistic marks in UZR, with 0.9, and UZR/150, with 2.0. And whereas his -3 DRS weren’t notably good, it was higher than the -8 he posted in 2018 and the -12 he had final yr.
Giovanny Urshela: 1.6 fWAR
An damage prevented Urshela, who had already damaged out final yr, from taking part in the entire 60 video games, however even 43 contests have been sufficient for him to put third on the Yankees’ fWAR record. Offensively, he was excellent, with a well-rounded line of .298/.368/.490, a .365 wOBA and a 133 wRC+ (similar to final season’s 132.)
Defensively, he carried out properly per the common metrics: a 5.4 UZR, a 13.2 UZR/150 and 6 DRS are wonderful numbers for a 3rd baseman. Nevertheless, Statcast’s Outs Above Common had him within the twentieth percentile of all qualifiers. Fortunately for Gio, that final stat isn’t weighted within the WAR calculation.
Gerrit Cole: 1.4 fWAR
The one pitcher on the Yankees that surpassed the 1.0 fWAR threshold, Gerrit Cole didn’t have a usually dominant season, at the very least in fWAR’s (admittedly flawed) view. His FIP, the ERA estimator upon which FanGraphs’ model of WAR relies, didn’t even lead the rotation (3.89 to Jordan Montgomery’s 3.87.) Nevertheless, his 1.4 fWAR was far larger than Montgomery’s 0.9. Monty was the second-ranked hurler on the Yankees.
However make no mistake: Cole pitched very properly. In 12 begins and 73.0 frames, he had a 32.6 Ok%, a 5.9 BB% and a 2.84 ERA. He had a little bit of a house run challenge (1.73 HR/9) however he was the ace the Yankees thought they signed final winter, particularly within the postseason.
Clint Frazier: 1.3 fWAR
Frazier was the Yankees’ breakout performer. He went from taking no walks to operating the seventeenth highest BB% (15.6) amongst batters with at the very least 150 plate appearances. He additionally developed from a awful defensive outfielder to a Gold Glove finalist, a outstanding evolution for the younger participant.
He slashed .267/.394/.511 with a .388 wOBA and a 149 wRC+. The on-base and slugging percentages are notably spectacular. He made some adjustments in his strategy and swing and boy, did they repay. He additionally labored onerous to enhance with the leather-based, and the distinction was evening and day. In proper area, the place he performed essentially the most (216.0 innings), he had a 3.8 UZR, a 24.0 UZR/150 and 4 DRS. Moreover, he was within the 69th percentile in Outs Above Common. Not unhealthy in any respect.
Together with his wonderful efficiency, Frazier ought to have, in any case, earned an opportunity to have taking part in time subsequent season and past.