Nothing compares to the beauty of a silky smooth swing. The Yankees have had plenty of great power strokes over the years, and fans can boast that their own Babe Ruth possessed the first true home run stroke in baseball history. Despite poor camera quality in the 1920s, you can still appreciate the beauty of the Babe’s swing through fuzzy black and white.
Maybe none of the guys listed below have the same pure swing that Ken Griffey Jr. had, but there have been plenty of pinstriped sluggers whose swings were nothing short of a work of art. We’ll keep this list confined to the past few decades due to the volume of phenomenal hitters that the Yanks have had over their history, but there are still plenty of memorable swings to choose from.
Let’s begin with the best hitter on this list. Rodriguez is the greatest hitter I have ever seen, and his power stroke to all fields has a lot to do with that. His swing is so incredibly powerful, yet he makes it look effortless. When it comes to his swing, Rodriguez leaves the best for last with one of the sexiest follow-throughs I have ever seen, holding the bat above his head for a brief second before dropping it at his feet to begin his home run trot. If I were to teach my kid how to swing a bat, I would immediately bring up Rodriguez highlights. His mechanics are absolutely flawless.
Oh how I miss seeing this swing in the Bronx. Like Rodriguez, Cano sometimes made his swing look effortless during his Yankees tenure, while making the right field seats his own personal playground for home runs. What is amazing about Cano is his ability to square up a pitch regardless of its location. Cano gets his hands through the zone at lightning speed and seems to drop his bat before his swing is even finished, but boy does it look amazing.
Strawberry is another example of a Yankee with lightning-quick hands. In fact, at times it looked like he was generating his power from just his hands and wrists. The former Yankee always kept his elbow up before beginning his swing, and kept the swing level through the zone. His landing spot on his leg kick was always perfect and many of the balls he hit found landing spots in the outfield seats.
Sure, Gary Sanchez is the talk of the Baby Bombers (and for good reason), but Bird’s swing will be catching my eye in 2017. I love the poise of his stance. He wastes no motion when awaiting the pitch and you will rarely see his hands drift on a breaking ball. Hopefully the shoulder has fully recovered and Bird will be back to using his pretty swing to generate plenty of home runs for the Yanks this year.
I just love this swing for the exact opposite reasons as the others on this list. Everything from Sheffield’s stance to his swing were so violent yet he seemed in perfect control all the time. His 400th career home run captures the incredible essence of his fierce stroke.
This power stroke tops them all.
Tell us whose swing you liked to watch.