For the first time all year, Andruw Jones started a day game after a night game in the outfield. He had started consecutive games just once in the outfield and that was when he hit three home runs in nine at-bats in a doubleheader in Boston on July 12.
As for starting a day game after a night game in the field, Wednesday marked Jones’s first instance since June 15-16, 2011.
“If my legs are feeling healthy, then yeah, I would rather [play the outfield],” Jones said. “I can help Curtis, position himself out there and I feel more in the game, but I really don’t mind the DH.”
Like many other players, Jones’s splits as a designated hitter and outfielder are different. In 30 games as an outfielder he is hitting .224 (22-for-98) with nine home runs and 15 RBI and in 14 games as the designated hitter, Jones is hitting .333 (10-for-30) with three home runs and 10 RBI.
Jones is hitting .379 (11-for-29) against left-handed pitchingwith five home runs since June 22. In that span he hit home runs against Jonathan Niese, Brett Cecil, Franklin Morrales and Felix Doubrant.
“It feels good,” Jones said Tuesday. “Everybody when you might go one game not feeling good at the plate, you’re looking forward to that next game and getting another four at-bat game. Since we’ve played in Boston, I’ve been feeling pretty comfortable at the plate.”
Robinson Cano is the only major leaguer with a hitting streak of at least 15 games in each of the last four seasons. This year, he has surpassed that by becoming the first Yankee to hit in 20 straight games since Derek Jeter from April 8 to May 3, 2007.
Since 1942, Cano is the 10th Yankee to have a hitting streak reach 20 games and it is the longest by a Yankee whose main position is second base since Joe Gordon hit safely in 29 straight from May 13-June 14, 1942. Coincidentally, Gordon’s streak began nearly a year after Joe DiMaggio’s record 56-game streak began.
Cano is hitting .405 (32-for-79) with six home runs and 20 RBI during this run, which is part of an extended tear that has seen him hit 18 home runs in 51 games since May 18.
“A 20-game hitting streak means he’s being productive,” manager Joe Girardi said. “As far as how far it goes I really haven’t thought too much about that. I think all of us expect Robbie to have good at-bats every day. When he does that, he’s going to get his base hits, so hitting in 20 straight games isn’t a surprise.”
Three runs for 41 games and counting
The Yankees took an astounding streak of 41 straight games with at least three runs scored into Wednesday afternoon. Since 1920, that is the longest single-season streak, though the longest overall streak was 49 straight games from Sept. 7, 1950-May 16, 1951.
The streak began with a 6-5 win in Anaheim on May 20 and during its life, the Yankees have had five games where they were held to the minimum. Those instances account for five of their 11 losses in that time period with four coming by a 4-3 margin.
“There are going to be days when pitchers throw the ball well and runs are tough to come by,” Girardi said. “But our guys have done a good job of finding a way to scratch some runs.”
The Yankees are 13-9 in one-run games and have won eight of 12 since May 30.
Follow Yankees beat writer Larry Fleisher on Twitter @LarryFleisher.