Hindsight is a beautiful thing because New York Yankees fans mercilessly booing their newest jewel, Giancarlo Stanton, after a dreadful start to the 2018 season is just laughable now.
Some pinstripe supporters were ready to hit the panic button after the first 20 games of the reigning National League MVP’s debut in the Bronx after he was traded from the Miami Marlins over the winter following a 59-home-run 2017.
While a period of acclimation was expected from Stanton as he transitioned from a small market like Miami to the most recognizable baseball team in the world, not many thought it would have started as badly as it did. Stanton batted just .198 with four home runs, 12 RBI and a dizzying 32 strikeouts in those first 20 appearances.
But all he needed was some time. Stanton’s strikeout rate is still concerning as he leads the league with 55 punchouts, but his last 20 games have been significantly better, headlined by a massive 4-for-4 effort with a home run and three RBI on Sunday afternoon against the Oakland Athletics. That game alone raised Stanton’s season average 20 points from .232 to .252.
From games No. 21 through 40, Stanton has batted .311 with six home runs and 14 RBI along with a .393 on-base percentage, 100 points better than his on-base percentage in his first 20 games.
It’s put him right on pace with his MVP-like numbers from last season. In fact, it’s practically dead on:
Giancarlo Stanton stats through May 13, 2017
.259 BA, 11 HR, 26 RBI
End-of-season stats: .281 BA, 59 HR, 132 RBI
Giancarlo Stanton stats through May 13, 2018
.252 BA, 10 HR, 26 RBI
Stanton really came alive in August of last season to make a push for 60 home runs as he hit 18 round-trippers in the calendar month. He was able to do so in a much more-expansive Marlins Park compared to the hitter-friendly Yankee Stadium. Just wait until Stanton finds his home run swing in the Bronx.