By Terrance Turner
April 9, 2022 (updated April 27, 2022)
New York Yankees right fielder Giancarlo Stanton is on fire.
Stanton just hit his third homer in the last two days to put the Yankees on the board.
This is only the latest homer in a hot streak that has Stanton batting .277 so far. Yesterday, Stanton SHINED in a game that produced overwhelming offense for the Yankees. With the game just underway and two outs for new York, Stanton hit a line-drive home run into center field, putting the Yankees up 2-0. In the third inning, Stanton struck again; with the game tied at 3-3, he smashed another two-run homer to give New York a 5-3 advantage.
Later, in the eighth inning, Stanton delivered a hard single on a changeup, bringing in an extra two runs in what was a 7-run inning for the Yankees, per MLB.com. His career-high six RBI combined with Aaron Judge’s four to power the Yankees’ blowout 15-7 win over the Chicago White Sox.
Stanton reached a monumental milestone on April 27. In the Yankees’ game against the Baltimore Orioles, Stanton hit a two-run homer in the first inning, his third home run of the season. It’s the 350th home run of his career.
Stanton becomes the seventh-fastest player to reach this pinnacle; according to MLB, Mark McGwire was the fastest to reach 350 homers in terms of games played, belting his 350th home run in his 1,280th game on June 2, 1997. Other members of the fastest 350 club include Alex Rodriguez and Babe Ruth — both of whom achieved that statistic with the Yankees. Stanton’s home run put the Yankees up 2-0.
It’s the first time he’s homered since the Yankees battled the Boston Red Sox on April 9. Stanton also made history that time, in the second game of the Yankees’ series against the Boston Red Sox. After hitting a solo home run on Friday, Stanton gave the Yankees the lead on Saturday, April 9 with a 437-foot blast. The Yankees and the Red Sox were tied at 2-2 when Stanton hit a 2-run homer in the sixth inning.
According to the New York Times, this feat makes Stanton the first player ever to homer in six straight games against the Red Sox. Three players (Mickey Mantle, Jim Thome, and Ken Griffey Jr.) had each had streaks of five straight home runs apiece.
The Associated Press reports: “Anthony Rizzo homered for the second straight day to start the Yankees’ comeback from an early deficit, a tying two-run drive in the fourth […] Stanton broke a 2-2 tie when he drove an 0-1 slider from Nick Pivetta (0-1) into the first row of the left field bleachers, a 437-foot drive over Boston’s bullpen. Stanton and Rizzo became the first players in Yankees history to homer together in both of a season’s first two games.”
But it was Stanton’s homer that broke the tie — and sealed the game. The two-run lead stayed intact thanks largely to a stellar pitching rotation. Luis Severino pitched for the Yankees through the beginning of the fourth inning and was followed by a series of relievers.
According to North Jersey writer Michael Aitken Jr., all six pitched an inning each, keeping the Red Sox lineup hitless for the remainder of the game. Ron Marinaccio, who made his Major League debut, was followed by Miguel Castro, Lucas Luetge, Chad Green, Clay Holmes and Aroldis Chapman. The tandem combined for six hitless innings, walking four and striking out seven.
For his part, Stanton continued his successful streak of hitting it big as an outfielder. After opening as a designated hitter on Friday, Stanton played right field the next day. Stanton hit nine of his 35 homers last year in 16 games as an outfielder.
“Anything I can do to help this team win,” Stanton said after the game. “I got — put a good barrel on the ball, and good things are going to happen.” He praised the pitchers, as well: “Awesome,” he said. “They’re executing, getting the job done — low pitch counts, too. So it’s been good. Gotta keep it going.”
Yankees manager Aaron Boone praised Rizzo and Stanton’s performance. “G had a lot of good at-bats tonight, ahead of the home run — smoked two balls on the ground his first couple times,” Boone said in a postgame press conference. “Good to see the big boys doing some damage.”
They definitely have. The Yankees opened their season 2-0 for the first time since 2018, according to the New York Post.