Will Defense Be A Strength Or Liability For The Yankees This Season?


No matter what big-league team you root for, there’s no denying that the Yankees have one of the best offensive units in baseball. But where do they rank among the league’s best on defense?

Errors and fielding percentage are simple statistical categories that show if defense is a player’s strength or weakness – and we’ll get to that here – but why not utilize the game’s latest analytical approach as well.

This past season, the Yankees had a total of 5,778 chances on defense – determined by adding putouts, assists and errors together. Interestingly enough, 5,778 chances was the second-lowest amount of opportunities on the defensive end among all Major League teams. Only the Indians had less chances on defense (New York’s pitchers had the fourth-most strikeouts in all of baseball, so that impacted their lesser total of opportunities).

Getting a little more specific now, the Bombers committed 102 errors and posted a team fielding percentage of .982 in 2019, per Baseball Reference (both ranked 21st in baseball). In recent history, the Yankees have hovered around the league average (which was .984 last season) – defenders in pinstripes haven’t had a fielding percentage better…

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