Monday, August 13, 2018


Photo: Getty Images
Let me get this straight....Greg Bird was benched for Luke Voit? Hmm... even I think that is strange.

I will admit I am not a big Bird fan. Some say "Bird is the word" and I don't follow that enthusiasm but even I don't think sitting Bird in favor of Voit makes sense. I'm equally as critical of our Skipper Aaron Boone lately so I guess in the battle of two guys that I criticize quite a bit, I guess in this case I would have to pick team Bird for once.

Photo: Getty Images
I just don't get it. Bird was benched on Friday's game, then played Saturday and went 2-for-4 with two doubles and then was benched on Sunday. Bird has been less than effective all season and he finally has his best game in WEEKS and Boone benches him. If this was a case where Boone benched Bird for someone who had a consistent track record and needed to find a way to get the guy's bat into the lineup I wouldn't question it at all. But, Voit? It makes no sense.

Boone insists that this had less to do with Bird then it did with Rangers lefty Martin Perez, read more HERE. So Boone wanted to keep Voit relevant? He says he wanted to see what the Yankees got when they acquired Voit.

Photo: Getty Images
Why test the waters with Voit after considering that before Saturday Bird hadn’t driven in a run since July 31 or had an extra-base hit since July 28. When Bird is right and he's hitting he balances out this lineup. Why would you sit him after he has his best night since going 4-for-40 with no extra-base hits, three walks and 11 strikeouts? I don't understand Boone's logic.

Corey Sipkin
Boone says he thought "a lot" it before he finally decided to bench Bird but maybe he needed to do some more research. I don't know how you justify sitting Bird when stats show in 52 plate appearances against lefties this season his OPS is .799, while in 194 plate appearances against right-hand pitchers it’s .690. Bird is successful against lefties!

I've been pretty critical of Boone, and I know I am not the only one. I understand the Yankees want to see what they have with Voit, but you can't spin it to say you want to keep Voit "relevant" when Bird has been struggling with his own relevancy not just this season but previous as well. Bird is an "everyday" player (when healthy) and Voit is not that player for the Yankees. He's a bench guy.

Photo: Getty Images
If the Yankees want to be relevant as they fight to get into the postseason they need Bird to be relevant. Realistically, Voit doesn't have the same relevancy as Bird does long term. Some may even say he has ZERO. If Boone doesn't understand that then we may be talking about his relevancy going forward.

I can't believe I just defended Bird. Write in on your calendars everyone, it isn't likely to happen again. Oh and Boone....please take note.

--Jeana Bellezza-Ochoa
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @nyprincessj

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