One of many Yankees hindered by injuries throughout the 2019 season, Giancarlo Stanton had his second year in New York cut short as he battled back from several ailments.
Stanton played in only 18 regular-season games, slashing .288/.403/.492 with three home runs and 13 RBI while missing 144 games because of a handful of injuries to his biceps, shoulder, knee and quad.
After the injuries wiped him out for all of May, July and August, Stanton enters Year 3 with the Yankees hoping to bounce back -- and New York manager Aaron Boone believes the power-hitting OF/DH can do so.
"I think it was very frustrating for him. And, to his credit, he handled it very well," Boone said Tuesday on SiriusXM's MLB Network Radio. "He was in such a good place last year, going into the season -- not only physically, but mentally.
"I felt like his process and his work, even in the small amount of games that he did play for us, is at that quality to start the season before he got hurt. Then, he came back and had the fluke (injury), where he hurt his knee on a weird slide into third base. His at-bats and his focus and his process really, really good last year. I felt like he was going to have a monster season for us. And I feel that way very much going into this year.
"So the big thing is going to be just keeping him healthy, keeping him built up properly, using spring training smartly. And I do feel like he's got a special season. The desire and the burn is very much there."
Stanton rejoined the Yankees in time for the postseason, slashing .231/.389/.462 with one home run, two RBI and four walks to five strikeouts while logging five games.
Brought to New York in December 2017, the blockbuster trade that sent middle INF Starlin Castro and two prospects to the Miami Marlins for the four-time All-Star and then-reigning NL MVP, Stanton debuted with durability. In 158 games, Stanton slashed .266/.343/.509 with 38 home runs and 100 RBI on the 2018 season -- a decline from his career-high 59 homers and 132 RBI he belted for 2017, but productive nonetheless.
With Stanton's contract from the Marlins, the Yankees are still on the hook for nine more years of his $325 million guaranteed deal he signed in November 2014. Stanton is set to make a base salary of $26 million in 2020.