Encouraging bat in the early going

The Yankees have an encouraging start to the season, with the best record in MLB in April (15-6). This is especially encouraging for Cashman, who, due to his (in)actions during the off-season, had a lot of questions surrounding his decisions.

If it wasn't for the early results of the additions, the voices against Cashman would (probably) be more visible and in the upper hand. As of now, it seems that the majority gives him the benefit of the doubt, and want to see how this season plays out.

For my pick I'm concentrating on new additions, so because Rizzo was already part of the team last season, I didn't chose him. After some doubts if I didn't prefer DJ, but I convinced myself to choose a surprising and encouraging candidate in Isiah Kiner-Falefa.

IKF, drafted in the 4th round by the Texas Rangers in 2013 as a SS (checking the draft order I notice he was 4 picks before Tyler Wade). Known for his versatility and his glove, I was curious to see if the hitting coaches could get something more out of his bat. He had a career OPS+ of 81 in Texas (according to baseballreference), and career wRC+ of 83 (with 118 in NY included because I couldn't get the table right with selecting only his TEX years (according to fangraps)). He was more known for his contact ability, seen his career K% of 15.5, and the league average being around 23% during this same period.

Now fastword to 2022 with the Yankees and his early numbers are indeed encouraging that there could be more in his bat: 0.311/0.346/0.392/118 wRC+/120 OPS+. All by suffering a small increase in K% with 18.5%.

He still isn't a baseballsavant-darling, as he only rates above 50 percentile rankings in xBA, K% and whiff%. Beyond those numbers, he also brings some speed to the table, which gives the bottom of the order another dimension, and Boone some options to manufacture runs.

Thanks for the read and let me know your thoughts in the comment section!

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