As the New York Yankees get ready for Opening Day this week, there are a lot of eyes on who could be a potential breakout candidate for the team this season.
Last year, Aaron Boone told Nestor Cortes at the start of spring training that not only will he be in the starting rotation, but that he would also be an All-Star — a bold statement that ultimately came true.
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Boone was asked by the “Talkin’ Yanks” podcast (available on Audacy here) on Sunday whether he had a player in mind to take off for this season.
“I’ll give you guys one: [Josh Donaldson] is gonna have a good year,” he said.
Donaldson, 37, is coming off his worst offensive season of his career and has drawn the scorn of many Yankees fans from his underperformance after the team traded Gary Ssanchez and Gio Urshela for him last offseason.
Yet, Donaldson has shown some promise this spring that he may have regained the pop in his bat that was missing last year.
In 13 games this spring, he is 7-for-33 with three home runs and eight RBI and an .848 OPS.
Obviously, spring training stats are a small sample size and should be taken with a grain of salt, but a more reliable Donaldson at the plate would do wonders for a Yankees offense that struggled in the second half and postseason last year outside of Aaron Judge.
Boone has not necessarily had the sit-down with Donaldson in the same way he did with Cortes last year, but Yankees fans will certainly hope that Boone’s intuition is right again.
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