New York Yankees first baseman Luke Voit had a career year in the shortened 2020 season. While it was a shortened season, Voit was one of the best players in the league and carried a Yankees squad filled with injuries.
Voit always gets a mixed reaction from Yankees fans. There’s fans that love him, and there’s fans that love to pick apart every little thing he does wrong. But in 2020, there were few things he did wrong.
After suffering a foot injury around the halfway point of the season, he was expected to join the Yankees’ starters already on the IL. Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton and others were already out, and it was looking like another lost year thanks to the injury bug.
However, Voit instilled a huge confidence boost in the fan base when he said he’d play through the pain due to the mass amount of injuries the team already had.
Voit Put The Team First in 2020
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The guy was tied for first in the MLB in home runs, and was hobbling around the bases after every homer. In a full, 162-game season, Voit for sure would’ve went on the IL missing a month or two. Last season however, Voit knew the situation, and knew the team couldn’t afford for him to go down too.
Voit expressed in a post-game presser his desire to stay on the field and play through the pain.
“I’ve got to be out here with the boys, and I’ll do everything to grind through it and do everything I can to help us win,” Voit said. “It’s been a weird year for our team, so I need to be out there to help them fight through this.”
To Yankee fans like myself, this meant everything. He could’ve easily went on the IL and left the Yanks down another starter… But he didn’t.
Voit stayed in the lineup. And not only did he stay in the lineup, but he carried the team when they needed him most.
The Numbers Are Eye-Popping
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I know, it was only a 60 game season. Any guy can get hot in a shortened year like that. But take a serious look at what Voit did in 2020.
Voit played 56 out of the 60 games. He batted .277, hitting an MLB-best 22 home runs. He also raked in 52 RBI’s and added 17 walks.
For a guy that really needed to prove himself, he arguably did more than that. When you do the math and compare those numbers to a full, 162-game season… it’s crazy.
On a 162-game scale, Voit would’ve played 151 games, hitting 59 home runs and raking in 140 RBI’s. That’s absurd.
Now obviously he wouldn’t have played that many games with the foot injury, and it’s very likely he would’ve had a cold stretch with 102 extra games added in. But just for a perspective, Voit did really well in 2020.
He did so well, that fans even brought up the idea of trading Voit because his stock would never be higher than it was after last season. He’s not the team’s best defensive first baseman. DJ Lemahieu is. And you can’t even DH Voit most of the time, because Giancarlo Stanton prefers not to play the outfield.
Late in the games during the postseason, manager Aaron Boone would sub out Voit and move Lemahieu to first. While it’s the safe move defensively, that move takes Voit’s bat out of the lineup, something the Yankees need.
Looking ahead to 2021
Luke Voit 💪 up against Corey Kluber pic.twitter.com/QuDIPnVcNH
— Bryan Hoch (@BryanHoch) February 26, 2021
If all goes well, Voit will pick up right where he left off and be a hot bat in the middle of the Yankees lineup. He’ll continue to improve at first base, and he’ll solidify himself as the Yankees first baseman of the future.
I personally love Voit. He brings a spark and personality to the team it desperately needs. The long hair and headband are awesome, and he’s one of the best power hitters on the team when he’s hot.
The 2021 season will have its ups and downs, just like every other year. The Yankees have a new rotation they need to work out, and the injury bug is always a lock to make an impact.
However, I anticipate Luke Voit to have another good, consistent year. He’s fired up for the new season, as should the fans. The foot issue is fixed, and a healthy Luke Voit can very likely mash 30 home runs for the first time in his career in 2021.
Lifelong sports fan fulfilling a childhood dream. I’ll talk sports all day. Passion and hot takes are my thing… there’s always a story. Yankees. NY Giants. Knicks. Texas Longhorns. Yes… being a Knicks fan is rough, but my time will come (hopefully). Senior at Quinnipiac University in Connecticut.